Rich Lowry revisits Michael Anton’s famous “Flight 93” election at POLITICO but, I think, draws the wrong conclusion.
In Anton’s defense, he never said he believed that Trump knew how to fly a plane. In the future, when hiring someone to pilot the most advanced jetliner on the planet, he might want to add that to the job description, and check a couple of references.
Lowry’s observation that Trump didn’t know how to fly is cute, but doesn’t fit the Flight 93 analogy. Neither did the people on Flight 93. Anton said the choice in 2016 was: “Charge the cockpit or you die” — but the people on Flight 93 were doomed either way.
Here’s why their actions mattered: if the terrorists kept control of the plane, the Capitol was going to be targeted as well.
It turns out in 2016, we gave control of the plane to a terrorist. And he set the controls for an attack on the Capitol. Our last clear chance to stop it was the first impeachment. Removal after the first impeachment — which Lowry opposed — was the real Flight 93 decision. But only one Republican senator said “Let’s roll” while the rest decided to leave the terrorist in control, worried that their political careers might die if they took action.
Now the Republican party is in disarray, and many of the most vocal opponents of the first impeachment — one Rafael Edward Cruz comes to mind — have seen their political careers die anyway, but in ignominy.
Now, as we wander around the ruins of the Capitol, we have another choice. Are we going to let that same terrorist take control of a plane again? Or are we going to put him on the no-fly list?