Indeed, disunion is in the air. Former Rep. Allen West, Chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, has endorsed legislation that would present a vote to the state’s citizens on whether to withdraw from the Union. This maneuver follows Texas Attorney General, Ken Paxton’s claim that the vandals who invaded the Capitol were not Trump supporters but Antifa activists. The fantasy that this mob was actually an elaborate psychological-warfare operation is quite popular among state-level Republican Parties.
Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey echoed these sentiments in a private conversation published on YouTube, in which he alleged that the Capitol siege was a “hoax” that “was all staged.” He went so far as to accuse Sen. Mitch McConnell of orchestrating the event because “they wanted to have a mess.” That might sound crazy to you, but it’s not crazy enough for the Michigan GOP. Shirkey was himself recently censured by his party for backing a ban on bringing firearms into the state’s Capitol building.
In Oregon, where the GOP has been rendered an afterthought, the party voted in favor of the hoax narrative in a January 19 resolution calling the Capitol siege “a ‘false flag’ operation designed to discredit President Trump, his supporters, and all conservative Republicans.” It was, the state GOP averred, an operation designed “to advance the Democrat goal of seizing total power, in a frightening parallel to the February 1933 burning of the German Reichstag.” In what has become a familiar dynamic, the state’s minority caucus in the Oregon House of Representatives condemned the unproductive resolution. The caucus is focused on winning elections, but the party has other designs.