The January 6th attack on the Capitol was a violent assault on American democracy, but the current Republican caucus, which is dominated by extremists, is even more dangerous because it is making it impossible for the government to function.
Sixteen days without a functioning House of Representatives, but Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), a conservative firebrand endorsed by former president Donald Trump, is still unsuccessfully seeking to succeed Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).
All three New Jersey Republicans voted for Jordan, who failed to reach a majority on the House floor Wednesday, drawing one less vote than he got on the first ballot Tuesday.
Jordan told reporters that he plans to stay in the race after failing to win a third ballot Thursday.
Twenty-two Republicans voted against Jordan on the second ballot but to be elected, he would need all but four GOP House members.
One-hundred and ninety-nine House Republicans voted in favor of Jordan, leaving him 18 votes short of the majority needed to win the speakership. McCarthy, who was ousted more than two weeks ago, endured 15 failed attempts before his caucus relented and let him claim the gavel.
Every Democrat voted for House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) on each motion to elect a Speaker, leaving the GOP to flounder in a cesspool of its own making.
The GOP caucus dominated by crackpots is making it politically suicidal to engage in the actual work of running the country.
The Tea Party movement was a fiscally conservative political movement within the Republican Party that began in 2009.
Members of the movement called for lower taxes and for a reduction of the national debt and federal budget deficit through decreased government spending.
The movement was hijacked by extremists whose “core principles” of unapologetic U.S. sovereignty and constitutional originalism represent a radical departure from traditional American constitutional law and the government norms that have evolved over the past two and a half centuries.
The Tea Party movement is a fundamentally radical political movement because it challenges the role of the federal government in the United States, as it has played an increasingly important role in society over the past century.
The Tea Party believes that the government should be so limited in its scope, that it cannot intervene in the free market or protect individual rights, while allowinf unfettered corporate control over the economy, environment and political system.
So radical and powerful has this right wing populist movement become that top GOP leaders have been toppled in primary challenges, as the Republican Party embraced the authoritarian dictatorship of former President Donald Trump and pursued such potentially disastrous risks as holding the debt ceiling hostage to budget cut negotiations, shutting down the government, and attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
Now, the relentlessly bizarre brand of Republican anarchy is tearing apart the GOP as election denying radicals are unable to coalesce around a leader.
Some Republicans believe that the January 6th attack on the Capitol was a legitimate response to a stolen election, while others agree that it was an assault on American democracy.
This divide between fantasy and reality has made it difficult for Republicans to agree on a House Speaker who can unite the party, with the most delusional equating any compromise necessary for responsible governing as an absolute betrayal of the party’s values and patriotic duty.
When large numbers of Americans voted to empower these zealots, and the GOP establishment validated and legitimatized the reckless fanatics, they made it possible for them them to cripple the most powerful nation on the planet.