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In 2016, during the heart of the Republican presidential primary race, Sen. Lindsey Graham declared that if his party nominated Donald Trump, “we will get destroyed…….and we will deserve it.”

Like Erwin Schrödinger’s fictitious feline, Graham’s prediction was both wildly wrong, and eerily accurate, both at the same time. Because while the Trump presidency ended up being the culmination of decades of conservative masturbatory fantasies, it’s also become the instrument of the GOP’s ultimate destruction — at least, the destruction of a Republican Party that still clung to the antiquated notions that their racism should be superficially genteel, and their criminality subtle. That GOP is dead, and in the chaotic aftermath of Donald Trump’s second impeachment acquittal, its corpse is being defiled by its meaner, MAGA-fied replacement as we speak.

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What I mean is: kick back, relax, and watch these fuckers eat themselves alive.

Friends, it’s hilarious.

ITEM:

After voting to impeach former President Trump for fomenting the January 6th insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, Illinois Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger was not only censured by his local LaSalle County Republican Central Committee (boo hoo) but was disowned by members of his own family who sent him a two-page, handwritten letter accusing him of joining “the devils army” in the face of “horrible, rude accusations” against Trump.

“It is now most embarrassing to us that we are related to you,” the congressman’s family whined. “You have embarrassed the Kinzinger family name!” Que terrible!!

ITEM:

In discussing a potential censure for Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey for voting to (unsuccessfully) convict Trump over the January 6th insurrection, Pennsylvania Republican official David Ball announced that: “We did not send him there to vote his conscience. We did not send him there to ‘do the right thing’ or whatever.”

“Or whatever,” folks. “Or whatever.”

ITEM(s)

Sen. Richard Burr? Censured.

Sen. Bill Cassidy? Censured.

Sen. Susan Collins? Probably gonna be censured!

Sen. Lisa Murkowski? Sure looks like she could be censured!

Sen. Ben Sasse? You guessed it! Censure’s likely a’comin (also, a Stalin comparison)!

To! Be! Clear! None of these people are heroes, or brave, or even particularly interesting for having scrounged up the bare minimum of human decency and situational awareness to accurately remember that Donald Trump told people to march to the Capitol and “fight like hell” and then to remember that those people did, in fact, do just that. They don’t deserve accolades for simply saying that the thing we all saw happen, happened. But oh my god, is it funny watching the Republican Party twist itself into some sort of yoga pretzel from hell all to defend the sacred honor of Donald Trump — who was acquitted. It’s even funnier when you consider that this wave of censures is the political equivalent of saying “and don’t even think of doing it again!”

Meanwhile, Republicans savvy enough to know which way the wind is blowing have begun the deeply undignified process of massaging Trump’s ego in the hopes of avoiding their own purging at the hands of a younger, hungrier, MAGA-fied GOP. For instance, House Minority Whip Steve “David Duke without the baggage” Scalise reportedly made a pilgrimage to visit his leader-in-exile at Mar a Lago this week — the very same day Trump released a rambling statement threatening Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling him “dour” and “unsmiling” (show me the lie) and, in an earlier draft of his letter, mocking McConnell’s multiple chins. Scalise clearly knows who’s buttering the GOP bread from here on out, and is perfectly willing to bend the knee or kiss the ass or whatever cliché you prefer in order to stay in their good graces.

The party is purging itself of non-believers (which is to say: Republicans who believe in Trump’s basic policies, just not his personality) in the lamest way possible. Next comes elevating the most enthusiastically unhinged true MAGA believers out there, especially the charismatic idiots, the insane sociopaths, and the ones who could honestly be either. Cachet in this new GOP will be based solely on how much someone can prove their dedication to the cause, no matter if they botch everything else. That’s probably bad for, well, everyone, in the long run. But for now, you just gotta laff!