The Republican Party has morphed into an entirely anti-democratic institution
Line of cars at Minnesota food bank. As millions are forced onto food lines as they worry about becoming infected with COVID the anti-democratic GOP is denying them any help while it instead works overtime to reverse the results of a free and fair election. | Neil Blake/Grand Rapids Press/AP

The decision by the majority of Republican lawmakers in the House to sign onto Donald Trump’s fascistic push to overturn the 2020 elections will go down in history.

It marks the day that the Republican Party officially becomes a new type of political party in America, a party that is both anti-democratic and openly fascistic. The days when the GOP could be characterized as a “conservative” party are over and, truth be told, have been over for a long time.

The GOP was well on the road to fascism 20 years ago when it drew congressional district lines that disenfranchised millions across the country.

They were on that road even before then when they embraced Nixon’s Southern Strategy, a politics based on racism and division.

They were on that road during the impeachment battle last year when they supported Trump’s scheme to discredit his likely political opponent, Joe Biden, by bribing a foreign leader in a scheme to exchange weapons for damaging information.

Their thirst for power at all costs, including the cost of dispensing with democracy, was exposed when 19 attorneys general petitioned the Supreme Court this week to reverse the choice of the people in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Georgia, and Wisconsin.

Those attorneys general hammered out their strategy at a closed meeting at the White House. And then, putting the icing on the cake, a majority of the Republicans in Congress added their names to the unprecedented scheme to reverse the results of an election.

In addition to openly attacking democracy, the Republican Party, like most anti-democratic and fascistic political parties, is also openly embracing violence and killing.

Fascistic mobs, militias, and racist groups like the Proud Boys are brandishing weapons in front of the homes of election officials who simply did their jobs. The GOP lawmakers who signed onto the latest petition to overturn the election have placed their party in an open alliance with these racist, dangerous and fascistic forces.

In true fascist form, the GOP is carrying out a strategy that exacerbates and worsens the multiple crises facing the country.

As the nation has been forced to its knees with more than 3,000 a day dying from the coronavirus, and unprecedented numbers out of work and millions waiting 12 or more hours on line to pick up boxes of food at food banks, the party’s answer is, “You are all on your own. We have plenty of money to fund the war machine and we have plenty of money to fund big tax breaks for the rich but you are on your own!”

The dead Americans, as a result, now approach those who lost their lives in World War II. The Republican Party as a whole is now officially the party of racism, fascism, and death in America. Those who thought Trump’s refusal to admit his loss was just the raving of a madman must now grapple with the reality that the real threat to democracy in America is a well-heeled purposeful strategy carried out by the Republican Party, the nation’s one major party that openly disavows democracy.

Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy warned on national television last night that no one should expect that they will relent even if the SCOTUS turns down their latest suit.

And don’t expect them to relent when the Electoral College on December 14 confirms the Biden win.

The Republicans are gearing up to challenge the Electoral College vote itself when its votes are presented to the Congress in January. They will push Congress to reject those results, which, under our flawed Constitution, it can do.

If the Senate and the House don’t agree to uphold the Electoral College, then everything gets kicked back to the states and we have a constitutional crisis like we have never seen in this country.

So even when Biden eventually takes over, assuming he does, we have a nation embroiled in multiple deadly crises and a nation in which many millions have lost all their faith in democracy.

“I don’t know how this ends without violence and death,” Clint Watts, a Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at George Washington University, said on MSNBC this week.

The physical threats and attacks so typical of fascism are growing by the day:

  • The plot to kidnap the Michigan governor
  • Armed militia members showing up at the home of Michigan’s secretary of state while she was decorating for Christmas
  • Violent threats directed at Georgia’s secretary of state, his family, and random election workers
  • A Georgia election official’s urgent warning that death threats in the state will get someone killed
  • Death threats made against the Arizona secretary of state and her family
  • The Arizona Republican Party asking whether people are willing to die for Trump’s cause
  • Armed protesters showing up at the homes of Idaho health officials and terrorizing their families

Many of the threats are coming from states where militias and fringe right-wing groups have traditionally thrived—Idaho, Michigan, Arizona, and Georgia. Watts said worse is yet to come.  “They now have had time to think about what they want to do, they have heard continuous false claims—which they want to believe—and now they are being pushed and pointed to places to mobilize.” Watts added the dynamic was only going to get worse in the months ahead after Trump is ejected from the White House, the coronavirus starts to be less of a threat, and there’s more public targets as people start returning to public life. These are the forces the GOP now embraces as part of their governing coalition.

If you don’t think they are serious, note how GOP leaders Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy torpedoed a symbolic resolution that would have recognized Joe Biden as rightful president-elect for the purposes of the inaugural ceremonies.

And many state GOP lawmakers continue making various legal and rhetorical efforts to push support for Trump’s fascist coup attempt.

Meanwhile, Trump himself is trumpeting clear calls to violence. “We will soon be learning about the word ‘courage’, and saving our Country,” Trump tweeted Thursday, before spouting more lies claiming that he actually won the election until it was “FIXED!”

These events are leaving commentators without words. Nicole Wallace on MSNBC asked how Republican lawmakers and conservative media could possibly fail to draw the line at stoking violence over an election Trump clearly lost?

“That line is in the rearview mirror,” responded former GOP strategist Steve Schmidt. “They crossed it. … We cannot be fantastical in wishing that what has happened has not happened in our thinking. It has happened.”

Schmidt went on to assert that the Republican party is no longer committed to the American ideal of representative democracy.

“They all know that Biden has won the election,” Schmidt said. “What they’re doing is for no purpose other than power. The Republican party is an organized conspiracy for the purposes of maintaining power for self-interest, and the self-interest of its donor class. There is no fidelity to the American idea and ideal.”

In this Nov. 5, 2020, file photo, Jake Contos, a supporter of President Donald Trump, chants during a protest against the election results outside the central counting board at the TCF Center in Detroit. President Donald Trump and his allies have fomented the idea of a “rigged election” for months, promoting falsehoods through various media and even lawsuits about fraudulent votes and dead voters casting ballots. While the details of these spurious allegations may fade over time, the scar it leaves on American democracy could take years to heal. | David Goldman/AP

So it is clear that we are in a war, a war to save our lives, a war to save the economy, and a war to save democracy.

The people have won the first big battle in this war by winning the 2020 election and defeating the head of this openly anti-democratic Republican Party.

The next battle is defeating the two right-wing Republicans in the January Senate run-offs in Georgia and there will be many battles yet after that extending well into and after the Biden Administration.

In election after election, anyone associated with this anti-democratic Republican Party will have to be defeated, which is all the more reason that the broad coalition that propelled Biden to victory must remain intact and in fact be broadened even further.

This is not the first time that the people have faced the threat of fascism and it will not be the first time when we finally defeat this particular threat.

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John Wojcik
John Wojcik

John Wojcik is Editor-in-Chief of People's World. John Wojcik es editor en jefe de People's World. He joined the staff as Labor Editor in May 2007 after working as a union meat cutter in northern New Jersey. There, he served as a shop steward and a member of a UFCW contract negotiating committee. In the 1970s and '80s, he was a political action reporter for the Daily World, this newspaper's predecessor, and was active in electoral politics in Brooklyn, New York.