GOP Senator: Facts about Legality of President’s Executive Order Don’t Matter to Republicans

A new low for ‘Morning Joe’ – hosts and reporter ignore Sen. Coburn’s warning that GOP base might launch race war over immigration, Ferguson
Watch the video below the fold
Watch the video below the fold

In an interview with Susan Page at USAToday, Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., warned that the Republicans’ base might be provoked into violence, if Pres. Obama signs an executive order on immigration, as planned:

The country’s going to go nuts, because they’re going to see it as a move outside the authority of the president, and it’s going to be a very serious situation,” Coburn said on Capital Download. “You’re going to see — hopefully not — but you could see instances of anarchy. … You could see violence.”

Coburn appeared on on MSNBC’s right-wing gabfest, “Morning Joe,” to clarify his remarks. In doing so, however, he committed a classic Kinsey gaffe — meaning he inadvertently told the truth:

I just… you know .. Joe, I just think, ah, the President oughta walk into this a lot more slowly, especially after an election. This idea, the rule of law, is really concerning a lot of people where I come from. And whether it’s factual or perceptual, it really doesn’t matter. And the glue that holds our country together is this common belief in the rule of law. [Emphasis added.]

A Republican senator admitted on their show that facts were irrelevant to his party’s base. What was the reaction from Scarborough, his cohost Mika Brzezinski and Jeremy Peters, the New York Times reporter whose turn it was next to ask Coburn a question?

Nothing. No one on the set appeared to notice what Coburn had said. Maybe they weren’t listening.

It is hardly news to liberals that facts don’t matter to Republicans. What is new here is that it’s so baked in in Beltway media circles that when a Republican senator admits it on national television, no one notices.

Coburn’s offhand manner is also a tacit admission that Republican leaders feel no compunction to set their voters straight when they’re wrong on the facts. In fact, pointing out that Ronald Reagan signed an executive order deferring deportation of undocumented children in 1987 and that George H.W. Bush signed a similar order deferring deportation of undocumented spouses and children in 1990 might make it appear they sided with Obama. And yet, as Coburn and his colleagues know full well, presidents Eisenhower, Ford and George W. Bush signed similar orders — at least 18 in all among five Republican presidents, none of whom were impeached.

So what is really going on here? In his next breath, Coburn elided Obama’s order and the unrest in Ferguson, Mo., to suggest there was a racial component to the GOP’s post-election derangement:

And when we see the things that are going on in Ferguson, and the worries there about whether or not it’s equally applied. We shouldn’t be doing anything right now to shake that worse. That’s my number one concern. I don’t know if it will happen. I hope it doesn’t happen. But I know people where I come from and across the South and Midwest are extremely concerned about it.

When Coburn says he hopes “it doesn’t happen,” presumably he referring to an uprising among the white under-class — “people where I comes from, across the South and Midwest” — against the unequal application of law to favor blacks and Latinos. In other words, Coburn suggests that the president’s perceived lawlessness — his uppityness — in giving temporary amnesty to Latinos risks triggering a violent reaction among the GOP’s racist base, which is already agitated by African-American demands for justice in the Michael Brown case.

Coburn raises a warning against a white riot, but, again, nobody on the “Morning Joe” set seemed to notice, or if they did, they didn’t care.

Compare and contrast Coburn’s “factual or perceptual” gaffe in which he admitted that Republican voters are untethered from reality, meanwhile, with the gaffe by Romneycare and Obamacare consultant Jonathan Gruber in which he admitted that he and other framers of the Affordable Care act had relied on “the stupidity of American voters” not to notice they’d reclassified a “tax” as a “fee.” While Coburn’s gaffe — his offhand admission that Republican voters were easily duped, a form of stupidity — went unnoticed, as of two days ago, Gruber’s gaffe had been mentioned on Fox 779 times.


  • Steve D
    November 20, 2014 - 7:19 pm | Permalink

    “Jonathan Gruber … admitted that he and other framers of the Affordable Care act had relied on ‘the stupidity of American voters'”

    Why is everyone complaining about this guy? He should get the Medal of Honor or the Medal of Freedom, and I argue for both.

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