As the country teeters on the brink of authoritarianism and the Right-Wing media’s propaganda machine goes into full mobilization mode to mock and deflect and redirect the narrative around President Biden’s speech demanding action on the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy quietly reported a non-election year record for fundraising.
$72 million, raised symbiotically through appearances on Fox News and Newsmax and OANN in which he trumpeted Fox-approved talking-points like these threats to subpoena Nancy Pelosi over January 6th on Sean Hannity’s program, or this empty threat of a Biden impeachment over Afghanistan, or this gleeful announcement on Brietbart that a 2023 House of Representatives with McCarthy as speaker will look a lot like retaliation and retribution: “The Democrats have created a new thing where they’re picking and choosing who can be on committees. Never in the history [of Congress] have you had the majority tell the minority who can be on [a] committee,” McCarthy told Breitbart, in a typical both-sides defense of his stated plans to remove Reps Adam Schiff, Eric Swallwell, and Ilhan Omar from their committee assignments if he’s elected House Speaker in 2023.
And make no mistake about it, McCarthy is being rewarded now for toeing the Fox approved line on everything from The Big Lie to Covid to pretending as if today’s “Inflation Crisis” were due exclusively to the $1.75 trillion stimulus passed early in the Biden Administration (and not the over $3 Trillion in stimulus passed by Trump). Because remember when McCarthy attempted, for about a day, to hold Trump accountable for his role in the January 6th insurrection? And then remember how quickly McCarthy was summoned to Mar-a-Lago to answer to Trump following those statements about Trump’s culpability in what happened on Jan. 6th, and how more quickly still a pliant McCarthy emerged and reneged his earlier statements so he could cower, shivering before Trump’s throne? Even as a (vanishingly) few principled Republicans accepted excommunication from (extremist) mainstream of Republicanism rather than participate in the Orwellian lie that Trump had somehow had the election stolen from him?
How do we imagine his fundraising numbers would have looked without the Fox propaganda machine to provide him the pulpit from which he could preach disinformation and lies? Or how about his bid to be Speaker? How are non Trump-aligned Republicans doing this cycle?
In the words of the above linked article from The Hill, “The few remaining Republicans in his firing line for showing insufficient loyalty could well be cut down. […because…] Trump doesn’t care whether Republicans win. It’s not about Republicans winning. Trumpism is about revenge.”