Raphael Warnock wins in Georgia. Now Joe Manchin and Kyrstin Sinema will have to arm wrestle for veto power.

Gilead

Donald Trump

Coup attempt


Fig. 1. “Jake Angeli (Qanon Shaman), seen holding a Qanon sign at the intersection of Bell Rd and 75th Ave in Peoria, Arizona, on 2020 October 15.” Photography by TheUnseen011101 [pseud.], October 15, 2020, via Wikimedia Commons, public domain.

The Democrats have increased their putative margin of control in the U.S. Senate by one vote with Raphael Warnock’s win against abortion hypocrite Herschel Walker in the Georgia runoff.[1]

[Raphael] Warnock’s victory means Senate Democrats — as long as they vote in unity — will no longer need to rely on Vice President Kamala Harris to cast tiebreaking votes. It also lessens the ability of moderate Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin III of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona to block or soften legislation, as they’ve done in the current Congress.[2]

But Democrats have a new demon to blame for inaction: a Republican-led House of Representatives,[3] albeit with what sure looks like an unworkable majority, which might mean that even less gets done.[4] There’s always, always, always an excuse. Always.[5] As for Donald Trump,

This is [Brian] Kemp’s party in Georgia, not Trump’s party in Georgia. The message has been sent to Donald Trump by Republicans that we don’t need you. We don’t want you. We’re going to move forward without you.”[6]

This sounds like hubris. You can’t imagine how it provokes my contrarian instincts. It persuades me I’m going to regret saying that as near as I can tell, it’s a more realistic attitude toward Trump than I’m seeing from a vast majority of Republican politicians.[7]

Tina Nguyen, “Has Trump Already Lost ’24?” Puck News, November 30, 2022, https://puck.news/has-trump-already-lost-24/

Tierney Sneed, “Appeals court halts special master review of documents seized at Mar-a-Lago in major defeat for Trump,” Cable News Network, December 1, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/01/politics/mar-a-lago-special-master/index.html

Kristen Holmes, “Trump expresses support for Capitol rioters as he continues to embrace extremist groups,” Cable News Network, December 2, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/02/politics/donald-trump-january-6-rioters-support/index.html

Bess Levin, “Donald Trump, Running for President in 2024, Defends Violent Mob That Broke Into the Capitol Over His 2020 Loss,” Vanity Fair, December 2, 2022, https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2022/12/donald-trump-defends-january-6-rioters

Karoun Demirjian and Toluse Olorunnipa, “White House rebukes Trump’s suggestion to suspend Constitution over 2020 election,” Washington Post, December 3, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/12/03/trump-constitution-truth-social/

Kristen Holmes, “Trump calls for the termination of the Constitution in Truth Social post,” Cable News Network, December 4, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/03/politics/trump-constitution-truth-social/index.html

Ruth Marcus, “Trump’s call for suspending the Constitution is too dangerous to ignore,” Washington Post, December 4, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2022/12/04/ruth-marcus-donald-trump-latest-outrage-is-too-dangerous-ignore/

Martin Pengelly, “Biden rebukes Trump for saying constitution should be ‘terminated’” Guardian, December 4, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/04/biden-trump-us-constitution-terminated-election-fraud

Amy B. Wang, “GOP lawmakers largely silent after Trump suggests ‘termination’ of Constitution,” Washington Post, December 4, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/12/04/trump-constitution-republicans/

Caleb Ecarma, “Republicans Apparently Have No Red Line With Trump—Not Even His Desire to Terminate the Constitution,” Vanity Fair, December 5, 2022, https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2022/12/republicans-trump-terminate-constitution

Jeremy Roebuck, “Rudy Giuliani doubles down on false Pennsylvania election fraud claims in disciplinary hearing,” Philadelphia Inquirer, December 5, 2022, https://www.inquirer.com/news/rudy-giuliani-dc-disciplinary-board-hearing-bar-pennsylvania-election-20221205.html

Sara Murray, Annie Grayer, and Zachary Cohen, “House January 6 committee has decided to make criminal referrals, chairman says,” Cable News Network, December 6, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/06/politics/january-6-committee-criminal-referrrals/index.html

Jenny Jarvie, “Warnock defeats Walker in Georgia runoff, giving Democrats a 51-seat Senate majority,” Los Angeles Times, December 6, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-12-06/sen-raphael-warnock-defeats-herschel-walker-in-georgia-senate-runoff

Twitter


Fig. 2. “Elon Musk shared a video of his entrance on his Twitter account.” Photograph attributed to Elon Musk, October 26, 2022, via the New York Post,[8] fair use.

Faiz Siddiqui, “Amazon, Uber ads appear on Twitter pages of white nationalists restored by Musk,” Washington Post, December 6, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/12/06/twitter-ads-elon-musk/


COVID-19 Pandemic


Fig. 3. Photograph by author, November 8, 2022.

Katy Stech Ferek and Lindsay Wise, “Lawmakers Agree to Rescind Military’s Covid-19 Mandate in Defense Deal,” Wall Street Journal, December 6, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/lawmakers-spar-over-marijuana-energy-permits-in-defense-bill-talks-11670355641


  1. [1]Jenny Jarvie, “Warnock defeats Walker in Georgia runoff, giving Democrats a 51-seat Senate majority,” Los Angeles Times, December 6, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-12-06/sen-raphael-warnock-defeats-herschel-walker-in-georgia-senate-runoff
  2. [2]Jenny Jarvie, “Warnock defeats Walker in Georgia runoff, giving Democrats a 51-seat Senate majority,” Los Angeles Times, December 6, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-12-06/sen-raphael-warnock-defeats-herschel-walker-in-georgia-senate-runoff
  3. [3]Hannah Knowles, Marianna Sotomayor, and Colby Itkowitz, “Republicans narrowly win House, ending full Democratic control of Congress,” Washington Post, November 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/11/16/republicans-win-house-majority/
  4. [4]Marianna Sotomayor et al., “Congressional Republicans panic as they watch their lead dwindle,” Washington Post, November 11, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/11/11/senate-republicans-mcconnell-midterms/
  5. [5]David Benfell, “Democrats and contradiction,” Not Housebroken, September 2, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/11/18/democrats-and-contradiction/
  6. [6]Buzz Brockway, quoted in Jenny Jarvie, “Warnock defeats Walker in Georgia runoff, giving Democrats a 51-seat Senate majority,” Los Angeles Times, December 6, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-12-06/sen-raphael-warnock-defeats-herschel-walker-in-georgia-senate-runoff
  7. [7]David Benfell, “Republican politicians out of touch?” Not Housebroken, December 6, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/12/06/republican-politicians-out-of-touch/
  8. [8]Thomas Barrabi, “Elon Musk barges into Twitter HQ as deal nears: ‘Let that sink in,’” New York Post, October 26, 2022, https://nypost.com/2022/10/26/elon-musk-barges-into-twitter-headquarters-as-deal-nears/

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