Nicolle Wallace did a segment on her MSNBC show fondly reminiscing — okay, actually calling it tragic — that many prominent Republicans once condemned Trump’s racism and xenophobia during the 2016 presidential campaign and have now fallen completely silent in the face of his most obviously racist attacks yet. A few of the examples she cites:
“He’s a race-baiting, xenophobic, religious bigot,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said in December of 2015.
“Look, of course, it’s inappropriate to be attacking a federal judge’s race or ethnicity,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said in June of 2016.“Quite frankly, I’m very disturbed by the way he keeps referring to this judge, an American born in Indiana, who he continues to raise issues about and I hope he’ll stop doing that,” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said in June of 2016.
“I think a good place to start would be to apologize for the various totally inappropriate things he said over the last couple of weeks,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said in June of 2016.
Political necessity, or at least the perception of it in the minds of a politician, takes precedence over principle and ethics. It was politically convenient of them to condemn Trump’s racism when running against him or supporting someone who is, but now that he’s in office and has a fired up base willing to attack anyone who criticizes him, we see that those condemnations were hollow and meaningless from the start. You will wait in vain for those same politicians to condemn him today.