Way too many in the DC media and punditry are downplaying the extremism of new Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, a Republican from Adrastros’ home state of Louisiana.
CNN’s anchor John King referred to him thusly: “he’s a blank slate.” He says this because many Americans do not know who he is, but it is not like THEY AS JOURNALISTS WHO ARE SUPPOSED TO DO JOURNALIST THINGS LIKE TWO MINUTES OF RESEARCH do not know who the guy is.
Sorry for yelling. It’s just hard to be calm with these people.
A cursory examination of Johnson’s record reveals a litany of extremist positions and controversial actions. For instance, he has consistently opposed LGBTQ+ rights, leading efforts to curtail anti-discrimination protections for this community. Johnson’s stance on reproductive rights is similarly extreme, as he supports draconian anti-abortion laws that infringe upon a woman’s autonomy over her own body. His views on immigration mirror this radicalism, endorsing harsh policies that tear apart families and exacerbate divisions.
Oh, and he refused to accept the results of the 2020 presidential election. For a “blank slate” the guy has quite a history.
Also, instead of looking like Failed Speaker Candidate Jim Jordan, who appears like someone who screams at his kid for talking during daddy’s football game, Our New Speaker is a smiling fascist. One of those far-right Christians like Jerry Falwell who looks happy about the idea of you going to hell for being a liberal.
ERIC MCDANIEL, BYLINE: Yeah. So he’s a social conservative guy from Louisiana, and he’s known as a nice guy, which helped at a moment like this. He’s known as a bit of a policy-minded person. He’s also an evangelical, which played a big role in his acceptance speech, and his win’s being celebrated by anti-abortion rights groups. He’s long been allied with the former president, Trump. He was one of just a few folks chosen to defend Trump in his first impeachment trial. And like Kevin McCarthy before him, Johnson voted against certifying Biden’s election win.
MARTÍNEZ: Was there a big GOP sigh of relief?
MCDANIEL: Folks were chanting his name as the vote got underway. It’s hard to overstate just how relieved folks seem there right now. And in fact, placeholder speaker Patrick McHenry, who has cut a dour figure in the Capitol over the last few weeks, was all smiles as he presided over the vote yesterday. But even after cobbling together this win for Johnson, the hard part’s probably still to come. The government shuts down next month, and Johnson has already had to waylay Congress’ recess to buy himself some time to get something done to try and keep it open.
MARTÍNEZ: So what is it about Mike Johnson that got him all the votes that he needed?
MCDANIEL: Look. Like I said, he’s a nice guy.
He’s just a likable guy and can he really be all that bad, even with the LGBTQ hate, attacks on women, etc.? But you see, he’s a “social conservative” and Mr. McDaniel, Mr. Adrastros WOULD LIKE A WORD.
Is that all it takes to make the end of democracy and the start of American fascism palatable? A smile? God help us all with a DC media like this.