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Those committed to truth and facts must fight five times harder than the Republicans and their lies.

6 min read

It depresses me to acknowledge this, but the Republicans’ commitment to blatant and serial lying, and Orwellian “make believe” governing, pose a real threat by overwhelming the public debate and individual’s efforts to stay grounded.  While a bit well-worn (and of uncertain provenance), this quote is fundamentally true: “A lie can travel halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on.

In practical terms, it just can be hard to remember all of the Republicans’ lies and dysfunction (before, during and (regrettably) after Trump).  How do you keep track?  

But, as we nobly fight against this Republican scourge, a bullet point timeline can greatly help.  Yes, the below list is very long — but that is the whole point and the challenge.  And, trust me, you will be hit with feelings of “Oh yeah . . . wtf?”  And so much is left out of this list, such as the January 6 insurgency and Trump’s mishandling of Covid.  Again, that is part of the point — even this “bullet point” list of Republican lies and dysfunction is partial:

With We’re trapped by the GOP’s commitment to lying,” Greg Sargent lists recent misconduct:

  • Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Fox News host Tucker Carlson are vaguely suggesting that Anthony S. Fauci is to blame for creation of the coronavirus, based on a convoluted stew of half-truths and speculation about international virology research and the hypothesis that the virus originated in a lab in China. Carlson has been telling his viewers that covid vaccines have been killing people by the thousands. He’s the highest-rated host on cable news.
  • Republican members of Congress are trying to recast the Jan. 6 insurrection as a gentle stroll through the Capitol by people who may or may not have been Trump supporters. Meanwhile, the purging of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) shows that the lie that Trump won the 2020 election has become the central organizing principle of the GOP.
  • The very act of fact-checking work is so offensive to Republicans that a group of GOP state legislators in Michigan have filed a bill called the “Fact Checker Registration Act.” It would require fact-checkers to register with the state and acquire a million-dollar insurance policy, and fine them if their fact-checks are displeasing to the government.

In December 2020, a smart writer noted the following:

For the earlier time period, Maddow Blog’s Steve Benen summed it up this way:

  • April 2011: House Republicans threaten a government shutdown unless Democrats accept GOP demands on spending cuts.
  • July 2011: Republicans create the first-ever debt-ceiling crisis, threatening to default on the nation’s debts unless Democrats accept GOP demands on spending cuts.
  • September 2011: Republicans threaten another shutdown.
  • April 2012: Republicans threaten another shutdown.
  • December 2012: Republicans spend months refusing to negotiate in the lead up to the so-called “fiscal cliff.”
  • January 2013: Republicans raise the specter of another debt-ceiling crisis.
  • September 2013: Republicans threaten another shutdown.
  • October 2013: Republicans actually shut down the government.
  • February 2014: Republicans raise the specter of another debt-ceiling crisis.
  • December 2014: Republicans threaten another shutdown.
  • February 2015: Republicans threaten a Department of Homeland Security shutdown.
  • September 2015: Republicans threaten another shutdown over Planned Parenthood.

Holy cow, right!?!  But reading this list of “Republicanism” illustrates the absurdity of asking whether Republicans intend today to be “bipartisan” or helpful in any respect.  Absorbing this chronology should dispel any notion that “some moderate Republican coalition” exists to help pass bills or make progress.  

And understanding all of the above  — and refreshing your memories — is required to meaningfully assess our current political situation and the unbroken, continuing, and consistent threat posed by the Republican Party.  

And the misconduct by Republicans is so varied and repetitive, and covered up by lies, that we should likely publish (and update) this chronology every month.  

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