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US: ‘Dysfunctional Week’ uncovers fissures, fractures, faultlines in GOP

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Washington, Feb 12

  The GOP has “exposed” itself in a “Dysfunctional Week” in its actions in the Congress laying bare the fissures, fractures and faultlines across the party, sabotaging its own legislators carefully crafted bipartisan legislations in showing allegiance to former president Donald Trump.

Self-inflicted failures in both chambers of Congress, a decisive legal defeat for their standard-bearer and hints of an ouster for their embattled chairperson (Mitch McConnel) left Republicans looking rudderless and ineffective this week, media reports said .

A new level of political party dysfunction was on full display this week – with historic meltdowns in both chambers, intraparty fractures, a shake-up in the Republican National Committee and the legal defense for Trump, the likely Republican presidential nominee, pulled out from under him, the reports said .

“The Republican Party is now a complete mess that doesn’t stand for anything except allegiance to Trump, and there’s no consistent ideological content, and there’s no apparent effort to govern at all,” says David Barker, political science professor at American University and Director of the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies.

Trump’s campaign against Biden reached ridiculous levels of banality as he compared himself to renowned singer Taylor Swift saying he was more popular than her across the US. TIME magazine had voted her as the person of the year in 2023 in popularity ratings.

“The Republican Party is not really a conservative party anymore – it’s a populist party,” Barker says. “That unfortunately comes really close to just burning the house down, and that’s what sometimes it appears like they’re trying to do.”

House Speaker Mike Johnson oversaw a sloppy week, headlined by failed votes and party fractures, which began with the announcement that a bipartisan border security deal brokered in the Senate was dead on arrival in their chamber, the US News and World Report said.

The deal, painstakingly crafted over four months, included stiff new policies on asylum, funding to build a wall and the ability to close the border entirely, among other things – hard-line conservative policies of long standing with the Republicans.

Trump wanted to keep the border crisis a top issue in the presidential election, pressured his allies in the House to refuse anything other than a package of hard-line GOP policy priorities. They took their marching orders, the report said.

An embarrassing failed impeachment vote of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, whom hard-line conservatives sought to dethrone for “willful and systemic refusal to comply with the law” regarding the situation at the border and for “breach of public trust.”

It was the first impeachment attempt of a sitting Cabinet secretary and was followed almost immediately by a failed vote on a separate matter, as Johnson couldn’t garner the support necessary to move an aid package for Israel.

The “last nail on the coffin” was the extreme right wingers move to oust senate minority leader Mitch McConnel , the longest serving republican leader in the upper chamber who has helped seal the bridge between the republicans and the democrats to pass legislation, reports said.

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