Patterico's Pontifications

8/22/2022

Rusty Bowers: The Constitution Is Hanging By A Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:03 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Here is an illuminating interview with Rusty Bowers, Arizona’s speaker of the House who lost his bid for the Senate last month. As you might recall, Bowers had refused to subvert the election despite facing immense pressure from Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani, and John Eastman. As a result of his refusal to submit to Trump’s demands, he faced death threats, as well as protesters assembling outside of his family’s home.

Anyway, I can’t express how much I relate to Bowers’ sentiments below. I don’t believe he is being dramatic or overstating the issue. This is simply a realistic view of where we currently find ourselves. His words resonate with me because, like Bowers, I believed the Republican Party to be the gatekeepers of the Constitution, and that every effort would be made to protect it, no matter what might come along to challenge it. Never did I dream it would be Republicans that would be so willing to betray it:

“The constitution is hanging by a thread,” he told me. “The funny thing is, I always thought it would be the other guys. And it’s my side. That just rips at my heart: that we would be the people who would surrender the constitution in order to win an election. That just blows my mind.”

Here’s a bit more from the interview with Bowers:

The ascent of election deniers across the board marks the final transformation of the Republican party in the state. Trump’s grip is now complete; the strain of constitutional conservatism epitomized by Bowers is in the wilderness.

“I think it’s a shame,” was his rueful reflection on that transition. “The suite of candidates that we now have representing what used to be a principled party is just like, wow … It’s like being the first colonizer on Jupiter.”

In February, a mega “election integrity” bill was introduced into the Arizona legislature that was the culmination of the anti-democratic drift of the party. House bill 2596 would have given the Republican-controlled legislature the power to reject any election result that the majority group didn’t like.

Bowers resoundingly killed off that bill by sending it to languish not in just one house committee, but in all 12 of them. “I was trying to send a definitive message: this is hogwash. Taking away the fundamental right to vote, the idea that the legislature could nullify your election, that’s not conservative. That’s fascist. And I’m not a fascist.”

It’s a party that doesn’t have any thought. It’s all emotional, it’s all revenge. It’s all anger. That’s all it is.

Bowers said he remains optimistic that the party will one day find its way back on to the rails…

“It’s not like I’m alone in the wilderness. There’s a lot of people from all over the United States thanking me.”

But for now, he accepts that things are likely to get much worse before they get better. I ask him, at this moment, is the Republican party in Arizona lost?

“Yeah,” he said. “They’ve invented a new way. It’s a party that doesn’t have any thought. It’s all emotional, it’s all revenge. It’s all anger. That’s all it is.”

He held the thumb and digit finger of his right hand so close together that they were almost touching. “The veneer of civilization is this thin,” he said. “It still exists – I haven’t been hanged yet. But holy moly, this is just crazy. The place has lost its mind.”

–Dana

23 Responses to “Rusty Bowers: The Constitution Is Hanging By A Thread”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (1225fc)

  2. The Arizona Republican Party has been captured by people who ignore truth, and might act if it. (and maybe this could become true in a few other states)

    But it’s only the Republican Party.

    Not all elected Arizona officials, and the Arizona Republican Party is going to lose elections.

    That however, does not make the Democrats there a good choice.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  3. Remember, there was a time, not so long ago, when there wasn’t democracy in more than a dozen states.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  4. * The Arizona Republican Party has been captured by people who ignore truth, and might act on it.

    Copied from the weekend thread:

    https://www.wsj.com/amp/articles/liz-cheney-and-her-unhappy-choice-among-liars-trump-2020-disinformation-election-wyoming-campaign-gop-polls-establishment-11660939811

    Offhand, only one lie heard in normal, everyday American discourse seems to me close in size to Mr. Trump’s 2020 lie, and that’s the routine, universally affirmed lie, which is nowhere found in the science, that climate change is the end of the world..

    I don’t think that other lie is universally affirmed, even if Al Gore and AOC and some others seem too say it, although when made it tends not to get contradicted, and disagreement is confounded with denial that anything at all is happening.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  5. Backing Mark Kelly; wise perspective on war, peace & gun rights- for obvious reasons; and the planet itself. In this day and age, any combat vet and experienced astronaut in a 21st century elected office [he flew in the Gulf War and aboard four space shuttle flights] is an asset to the nation.

    DCSCA (009b73)

  6. The meme of the “constitution hanging by a thread” is well established in the Mormon church. Virtually every adult member of the church (in America anyway) knows that phrase. It comes from Joseph Smith, the founder.

    https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/ensign/1976/06/i-have-a-question/did-joseph-smith-say-that-the-constitution-would-hang-by-a-thread-and-that-the-elders-would-save-it?lang=eng

    In May 1843, he prophesied that “the time would come when the constitution and government would hang by a brittle thread and would be ready to fall into other hands but this people the latter-day saints will step forth and save it.”

    Rusty Bowers is Mormon, so it makes sense that he would say it.

    As a lapsed member of the church, I don’t believe that Joseph Smith was a divine prophet. He may very well have made the statement because he anticipated a clash between the church and the federal government over religious freedom, specifically the practice of polygamy.

    Even if I’m wrong, there’s always the blind squirrel phenomenon.

    As for the Mormons saving the Constitution, that remains to be seen. Will the Mike Lees prevail, or the Mitt Romneys?

    norcal (da5491)

  7. That however, does not make the Democrats there a good choice.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a) — 8/22/2022 @ 2:16 pm

    True. An example is the gun-grabber Mark Kelly v. Blake Masters. The only choice is not to vote for either.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  8. I do not understand how anyone aware of the mere idea of “political machines” in American politics can imagine that all the corrupt practices developed over a century have somehow been eliminated by innovations like same-day voter registration; vote-by-mail; WiFi and internet-connected polling stations;…

    What innovations of the 21st century have made elections more secure than those of, say, Dade County in November of 2000?

    “Our entire field is bad at what we do…” https://xkcd.com/2030/

    Pouncer (67ca42)

  9. From the year 2014

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3_0x6oaDmI

    Skepticism about our processes, and doubts about the results of changes to those processes made hastily, in panic, on the excuse of epidemic, are not unreasonable. And the more people CLAIM implausible perfection the more scrutiny those processes deserve.

    Pouncer (67ca42)

  10. It seems to me that if under the Constitution statehood can be granted by a simple Act of Congress signed by the President, it can be taken away the same way and revert the place to a territory or possession. Moreover, Article IV guarantees the states a republican form of government which, for those from Rio Linda, does not mean the political party but the political system.

    So what, I hear you ask? So if a state were to enact a one-party system, with the party in power deciding the election no matter how the people voted, it would be entirely Constitutional for the federal government to step in and impose martial law and hold free elections, or for Congress to revert the place into a territory and have Congress govern it till the people recovered from their sunstroke, or both. It would not be shredding the Constitution. It would be using the safeguards already written in it.

    nk (03e61e)

  11. nk (03e61e) — 8/22/2022 @ 7:32 pm

    Sunstroke! Well-played. (Arizona).

    norcal (da5491)

  12. @6. Perhaps less ‘hanging by a thread’– and merely ‘thread bare.’ The Second Try is 233 years old now ‘ya know; the fading ink flaking off the parchment. 😉

    https://constitutioncenter.org/learn/educational-resources/historical-documents/the-constitution-of-the-united-states-original-image

    DCSCA (1f8fdd)

  13. urbanleftbehind (0900f9) — 8/22/2022 @ 7:43 pm

    Good for Kari. Baby steps.

    Now stop it with the Trump puffery.

    norcal (da5491)

  14. The “stop it” was for Kari, not you, ULB.

    norcal (da5491)

  15. The thing that drives this is that Trump’s people think that “They” would be doing this to any Republican who dared to defy the Deep State. Trump’s personality and minor peccadilloes have nothing to do with it. You just cannot get them off that idea for love or money.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  16. The ascent of election deniers across the board marks the final transformation of the Republican party in the state. Trump’s grip is now complete; the strain of constitutional conservatism epitomized by Bowers is in the wilderness.

    It is much worse than this. Fixing the GOP is not longer good enough as the Democrats see all this going on and think “Hey!”

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  17. We are entering the aftermath of cutting down all the laws.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  18. True. An example is the gun-grabber Mark Kelly v. Blake Masters. The only choice is not to vote for either.

    Blake Masters might just be an opportunist.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  19. Offhand, only one lie heard in normal, everyday American discourse seems to me close in size to Mr. Trump’s 2020 lie

    Do you consider Socialism a lie? Because3 that is the other side’s offering.

    God but this sucks. James Mattoon Scott looks like the better choice. After all, fascism has never really been done right.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)

  20. Rubbish! San Francisco’s $20,000 designer trash can struggles to contain trash– guardian.com

    Storm the castle.

    DCSCA (2d07b0)

  21. Colorado gop senator piola switches to democrat party after attacks on his fellow republicans.like rusty bowers by trumpsters.

    asset (b2bf47)

  22. Ironically, it could be the stickers that Trump put on the Supreme Court that shut him down. Three justices have had an in-depth encounter with Mr Trump and have a measure of the man. That probably doesn’t help Trump’s case much. I doubt any of them came away impressed by Trump’s 5D chess playing.

    Kevin M (eeb9e9)


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