Marjorie Taylor Greene: Romney, Collins, and Murkowski are pro-pedophile

As an expression of the populist id circa 2022, this tweet can’t be topped. Fittingly, it came from the House GOP’s most embarrassing member and was aimed at three of the very few Republicans in Congress willing to hold Trump accountable for anything.

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It’s got it all. It’s cartoonishly demagogic. It’s combative — “she fights!” — to the point of outright smears. It’s tribalistic, targeting Republicans who refuse to go along with crowd instead of focusing on the other party. It’s conspiratorial, echoing the core theme of QAnon. And it’s faddish, as accusing critics of being “groomers” or sympathetic to child molesters has become the tool of choice lately to demonize opponents among some activists.

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It’s not the first time lately that Greene has implied that a political opponent is preying on children either. At Trump’s last rally in Georgia, she warmed up the crowd by warning Pete Buttigieg and his husband to “stay out of our girls’ bathrooms,” which makes no sense except by broadly reasoning that “gay” = “pervert” = “molester of little girls.”

All this for an allegation against Ketanji Brown Jackson that was so thin and cheap that National Review felt obliged to debunk it on her behalf. The new rule in populist politics seems to be, as it has been in QAnon for years, “Everyone whose politics I don’t like is pro-pedophile.”

And the corollary: “If I do like their politics, their pedophilia doesn’t matter.”

That’s one of the reasons Romney ended up voting yes on Jackson, I suspect. He was asked about it today and made a point of saying that he concluded she’s firmly “mainstream”:

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He was asked a few weeks ago about Josh Hawley’s insinuations that Jackson was soft on child abusers on the bench and said he had looked into it and found “no ‘there’ there.” The fact that it was Hawley who spearheaded that attack probably stuck in Romney’s craw since he’s seen before how low Hawley is willing to stoop to try to jumpstart some presidential buzz on the populist right. When senators were being rushed out of the chamber on January 6, Romney reportedly screamed at him, “You have caused this,” a reference to Hawley’s announcement days earlier that he would object to certifying the votes from certain swing states. That gave the “stop the steal” push momentum and inspired Ted Cruz to announce his own effort to object, not wanting to be out-pandered by Hawley on the right.

With Senate populists suddenly promising fireworks on the 6th, Trump and his protesters were galvanized. The rest is history. He won’t admit it publicly but my guess is that Romney tilted towards Jackson partly to rebuke Hawley’s latest grandstanding. It’s hard otherwise to explain how he believed she wasn’t mainstream when he voted no on her appellate court confirmation last year but reconsidered in time for this week’s vote.

Although partly too I think he’s eager to get back to the days when well qualified nominees were confirmed by comfortable margins despite their clearly conservative or liberal predispositions:

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If neither party can support a qualified nominee with whose judicial philosophy they disagree then Supreme Court vacancies can’t be filled unless the same party controls the White House and the Senate. The country can’t function that way. So he’s setting an example.

As for using “groomer” as a light insult on the order of “RINO,” consider the implications:

“The point isn’t to protect children. It’s to weaponize concerns about their safety in the service of conservative political power,” wrote Joel Mathis about “groomer” becoming the political weapon du jour. It’s simple McCarthyism in most cases except with child molesters subbed in for communists. No wonder Greene took to it like a fish to water.

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I’ll leave you with this.

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David Strom 8:00 AM | July 25, 2024
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