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The Reckoning Arrives For Donald Trump, Fox News, And The GOP

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The Reckoning Arrives For Donald Trump, Fox News, And The GOP


Spy magazine got it right more than two decades ago: Donald Trump is simply a short-fingered vulgarian.

For any remaining non-believers, this week’s released tape of Trump boasting about his sexual predator behavior eliminated any real doubts. (“Just kiss. I don’t even wait,” and “Grab them by the pussy.”)

In the wake of the ground-shaking campaign bombshell, the Republican Party now faces a political crisis the likes of which it probably has not seen since the days of Watergate. In terms of a political party openly at war with its presidential nominee one month before Election Day, as a GOP chorus grows demanding Trump step aside, there’s simply no precedent for this in modern American politics.

How did the Republican Party arrive at this cratered-out low point? Simple — this is what happens when conservatives feast exclusively on Fox News gobbledygook for years, especially for the last eight years under President Barack Obama. It’s what happens when you abandon policy, when you abandon common sense, and when you abandon hope in favor of vulgarity as a party platform.

This Trump fiasco was telegraphed months ago. All of it. It simply wasn’t possible that a vainglorious narcissist like Trump, deeply uninterested in how the world works, would be able to pull off a presidential election campaign without revealing his true identity.

The best case scenario was that Trump would run as sort of a bombastic and obnoxious Mitt Romney, lose, but not do serious lasting damage to the Republican Party. The far more likely scenario, and the one that’s unfolding during the final weeks, was that Trump would reveal himself to be a pathological liar and disturbed sexual predator who thinks fame gives him a license to assault and harass women.

Think about that: The GOP nominated a pathological liar whose moments of truth seem to be when he brags about his sexual predator habits. And even then, when audio and video proof finally confirmed what was long suspected, prominent Fox News hosts immediately sprang into spin control mode, while far-out Fox guests uttered bizarre statements.

Gina Louden: “No one was raped, nobody has died.”

Dinesh D’Souza: “In my entire adult lifetime but never before have I seen the media so aggressively huffing and puffing to drag this crooked hag across the finish line.”

The simple truth is the GOP followed Fox News into the ethical and moral abyss long ago. And the GOP did so willingly. Seduced by the millions of dollars (billions of dollars?) worth of free airtime that Fox News provides the party each year, and aroused by the channel’s unvarnished hate rhetoric and its fever swamp attacks, Republicans abdicated party leadership to the now-disgraced Roger Ailes, who then turned around and helped crown Trump the Fox News mascot/presidential nominee.

This train wreck, this dumpster fire, this…..thing now on display in the form of the Trump campaign represents the logical conclusion for a party that decided to walk away from governance and embrace the bottom-of-the-barrel offerings cooked up by Fox News. For a party that opted to nominate in Trump someone who scooped up all that Fox hate rhetoric and made it the very cornerstone of his campaign. And yes, that includes dangerous insurrectionism and the racist smear that Obama is a foreign-born terrorist sympathizer.

Lots of Republicans have since stood by Trump despite the fact he’s repeatedly denigrated women, African-Americans, Latinos, and the disabled, among others. That’s how the party arrived at its current crisis.

The funny thing is we tried to warn them.

Four years ago, I wrote about how Fox News was destroying the Republican Party. But no, back then I never imagined we’d be witnessing this kind of public disintegration of the Republican Party’s presidential nominee in 2016.

And that’s what makes this unraveling so stunning. It’s not that the campaign apparatus has fallen apart. It’s not that Trump’s team misread the electorate. It’s that the GOP candidate has fully revealed himself to be a loathsome person who has surrounded himself with equally loathsome people. First and foremost among them is former Fox News chief Roger Ailes, who was forced out this summer amidst a sexual harassment firestorm.

Please keep in mind:

During July, we learned that women claimed men who worked in positions of power at Fox News (namely Ailes, but not exclusively) groped women, kissed women against their will, made wildly inappropriate sexual comments (“Are you wearing any panties? I wish you weren’t”), asked about female employees’ sex lives, pressured younger women to date older men in the office, made “jokes” about liking having women on their knees, promised promotions in exchange for sex, and cut short careers of women who took offense.

And yes, Fox News general counsel Dianne Brandi and Ailes’ deputy Bill Shine were accused of trying to cover up their former boss’ behavior. (Shine has since been promoted to Fox News co-president.)

Twenty years ago on Friday, the same day the predatory Trump tapes were released, Fox News made its national debut, on October 7, 1996. Over the last two decades Fox News has forever changed American politics. And right now, the Republican Party is paying the biggest price.

Reprinted by permission from Media Matters for America.

IMAGE: Former Fox News Channel CEO Roger Ailes, before he was ousted last summer.



  1. Jock40 October 9, 2016

    With a decent Republican party the US would be a whole lot better place than the badly divided nation it is now as a result of the Trumpettes. I’m sure they’re not going to take their self-destructing hero’s election demise well. They’ll believe it was rigged and the scary thing is that between them, this angry cult have massive firepower coupled with little brainpower. A dangerous mix.

    1. Thoughtopsy October 9, 2016

      The US needs a functioning Conservative party for the health of the country’s political system.
      If you have a forced two party system then both parties need to be strong and smart or the system will eventually suffer.
      …Or you need to bring in MMP or a different system to allow distribution of both voices and power (not that that will ever happen) so one party can go completely off the rail and disappear with minimal effect on the overall institutions.

      I hope they sort their party out soon.
      That would mean:
      1) Ejecting the racist/bigot/misogynist element, plus Breitbart, the KKK and the rest of the “Alt Right”, as no longer welcome in the Republican party of the future.
      2) Moderating or ejecting the social conservatives as no longer useful or wanted. (Real conservatism believes strong in individual rights… having the government mandate marriage or who gets to use the bathroom is as far from true conservatism as it is possible to get).
      3) Working for all conservatives (Including non-white) for more opportunity and business success. i.e. Not targeting minorities with policy.
      4) Immigration reform. In some form. Because it’s 2016 and their current “Build a Wall” strategy with “Send them all home” dressing is built on false facts and is just embarrassing. Many minorities would vote conservative if the Republican party wasn’t actively promoting policies that hurt their families, communities and businesses.
      5) Less critical, but still important… Stop pandering to corporations and oil companies and trying to sell it as conservatism. It’s favoritism. It’s stacking the deck for big business. And its corrupt.

      1. Sand_Cat October 10, 2016

        Nothing personal, but if the GOP “ejects” the people you suggest, they won’t have a party.

        1. Wayneo November 2, 2016

          We can only hope.

    2. Sand_Cat October 10, 2016

      Trump has NOTHING, repeat NOTHING to do with it. There hasn’t been a “decent Republican party” in decades. Where have you been?
      All Trump has done is blunder along saying openly what the GOP has used code to convey all along, which is one reason much of the party establishment hates him.

    3. kep May 26, 2017

      Must be talking about liberals?

  2. Jon October 9, 2016

    Fox News and the Republican Party gave birth to Trump and his supporters. Trump made false and hateful statements at the time he announced his candidacy telling his supporters that Mexico was sending drug dealers and rapists to the U.S. When he continued to make hateful false statements they went unchallenged.The Republican Party never bothered to vet it’s candidate and act as if they are shocked and offended at what a neanderthal he proves himself to be.

  3. Sand_Cat October 10, 2016

    Once again, the GOP wasn’t destroyed by either Trump or Fox news, both of whom simply said more openly what the GOP honestly thought and wanted all along. Fox “News” is and always was the tool of the GOP, not the other way around. All the faux outrage is triggered by someone who simply brought it out in the open in the most explicit terms. Just what the HELL did the GOP voters think their leaders and representatives were really talking about? I can’t of anything more fitting than the whole party’s sliding into the toilet with all the other $#I+; they’ve finally found their way home.

    1. Wayneo November 2, 2016

      I just hope they don’t drag the country with them. I know that they have ruined Kansas.

      1. Bullseye June 5, 2017

        “They” didn’t destroy Kansas. The Kansas voters did that.

  4. Rob_Steinman November 9, 2016

    Amazing article, congrats God bless you!

  5. jaynemcgill December 1, 2016

    It’s been one yr since I decided to abandon my last job and that decision was a lifechanger for me… I started to work at home, for a company I found on-line, several hrs /a day, and my income now is much bigger then it was on my old work… Last payment i got was for 9000 dollars… Great thing about this job is that i have more free time for my family… http://chilp.it/728813e

  6. newsuperhuman December 10, 2016

    LOL. At least you had the balls not to remove the article. Petty, moralizing, hysterical, vapid – you’re just on the wrong side of history and couldn’t feel the pulse of a man having a heart attack. Best of luck with your “journalistic” career – you might want to consider an internship over at CNN or the Washington Post.

  7. Bullseye June 5, 2017

    Trump does things differently than previous Presidents? I certainly hope so. He is a sexual predator for his lewd comments? What does that make J. Kennedy and B. Clinton? He has undesirable people in his entourage? Obama consorted with Jeremiah Wright. The Kennedy’s father was a bootlegger and associated with the Mafia. In case anyone has forgotten Congress passes the laws and allocates money. Criticize those do nothings if you think progress is lacking.


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