Instead of taking concrete action to hold Trump accountable, however, they’ve been satisfied to criticize him while confirming his nominees and advancing his legislative agenda, such that it exists. For all their dismay and condemnation, neither Flake nor his like-minded colleagues have tried to connect their work to their rhetoric. They’re posturing against Trump while doing little to actually stop him.
There’s nothing to stop Jeff Flake or Bob Corker or Susan Collins from standing up against the president. Indeed, both Flake and Corker will retire at the end of the year—they have nothing to lose. And while they are substantively conservative—and likely approve of the judges and policies that have happened under the president’s watch—they’ve also framed Trump as uniquely transgressive. Either Trump is a threat to the country that demands action, even if it costs conservative victories, or he’s not. If he is, all they have to do is have the courage of their conviction. All they have to do is put words to action.
Otherwise, this is a charade, meant to garner attention and praise, while doing little—if anything—to challenge the dire threat they claim to oppose.