John Cornyn: “Unity” Concern Troll

Tim Miller on why we should stop taking this cornpone yutz seriously.

Leading The Bulwark…

John Cornyn: “Unity” Concern Troll

TIM MILLER: Stop taking this cornpone yutz seriously.

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🎧 On the Pods… 🎧

Jonathan Chait and James Wallner on Filibusters and Impeachments

On today’s Bulwark podcast, Jonathan Chait and James Wallner join Charlie Sykes to talk about the future of the filibuster in a divided Senate, and what the possibilities are in impeachment 2.0.

ACROSS THE MOVIE AISLE: 'Promising Young Woman' Reviewed! Plus: Seth Rogen v. Ted Cruz.

On this week’s episode, Sonny Bunch (The Bulwark), Alyssa Rosenberg (The Washington Post), and Peter Suderman (Reason) discuss the provocative new movie Promising Young Woman. Meanwhile, in controversies and nontroversies, the gang weighs in on the Ted Cruz/Seth Rogen spat.

For Bulwark+ Members… 🔐

MORNING SHOTS: How Impeachment Exposes the GOP 🔐

CHARLIE SYKES welcomes you to impeachment part deux.

THE TRIAD: Finance Is Magic 🔐

JONATHAN V. LAST on why it is not good magic.

ACROSS THE MOVIE AISLE: Bonus Episode! Joe Biden's Fancy Watch 🔐

On this week’s special bonus members-only episode of Across the Movie Aisle, the gang discusses the nontroversy surrounding Joe Biden’s fancy watch, the aesthetics of politics, and why men are lacking in nice things that they can hand down to future generations.

From The Bulwark Aggregator…

In Today’s Bulwark….

By Blocking Biden’s DHS Nominee, Hawley Is Picking a Bigger Fight over Immigration

LINDA CHAVEZ: Alexander Mayorkas is eminently qualified to lead the rudderless department, but objections over policy have delayed his confirmation.

The GOP’s ‘Pre-Fascist’ DNA

RICHARD NORTH PATTERSON: The term “fascist” is too often thrown around carelessly—but it can be helpful in explaining the direction of the Republican party.

A Bipartisan Agenda on National Security

STEPHEN PETER ROSEN: Policy moves that President Biden could take to unite the country and build on its strengths.

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The GiverI’ve been thinking a lot about one of the formative books of my youth these days. Which is why I initially reached out to my penpal Lois Lowry, to ask her to write an item for The Bulwark last year. I thought there were a lot of parallels withs with the world of 2020, COVID-19, and the world she imagined in The Giver.

So very graciously, she did submit a piece. If you haven’t read it, you should.

There’s just so much that connects that work with our present world. A couple quotes:

“The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It's the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared.”

“We gained control of many things. But we had to let go of others.”

But I think the most significant one is this:

“It's the choosing that's important, isn't it?”

Joe Biden has been President for six days. Not even. And how I see my right-wing compatriots react makes me laugh, cry, and want to kiss $0 goodbye on their criticisms. For them, the sky is falling. Joe Biden is doing pretty much exactly what he campaigned on, and the world is ending.

I’ve gotten nine text messages from “WinRed” asking me for money in that period of time. I don’t typically get a lot of those messages.

Republicans are scared.

But they also are secretly very quite happy. Because Republicans do not like governing. Being in the opposition and poking holes and making the perfect the enemy of the good is a house speciality.

EARLIER TODAY, only five Republican Senators chose to vote against their party on Sen. Rand Paul’s resolution on the constitutionality of a Trump trial after he was out of office.

It’s the choosing that’s important, isn’t it?

This tells us there will not likely be the requisite votes to bar Trump from holding future federal office. There will still be a trial. There will still be a vote.

Will all five stick with their vote on the constitutionality?

It’s the choosing that’s important, isn’t it?

Yes. It’s the the whole kit and caboodle.

Let’s see how those five choose to vote when the trial is done. Will there be five, or fewer? Or, if you want to offer me a prop bet, will there be more than five? (I am kidding. I don’t bet on politics.)

How WallStreetBets Pushed GameStop Shares to the Moon… Despite my interest in the story, I have not paid attention to the GameStop fiasco in recent days. I just sort of viewed them as a modern day Sears. Then I read JVL’s newsletter today.

As one of my salty college friends who works in finance observes:

“It’s all fucking market witchcraft and not remotely tied to any real value. Just the first time in history retail traders bent institutional investors over a barrel.”

Hey, remember when Kevin McCarthy told us to give the far-right GOP crazies a chance? Fun times.

It’s like when he blamed President Trump for his role in the insurrection, and then walked it back a few days later. Except, he’s not going to walk back the fact that multiple members of his caucus are, well, nutjobs.

Let’s pause for some food. Because I know what I am buying this weekend.

If you’re in a place where you can financially support your neighbors, whether they’re at a chain (god forbid!) or a local eatery, please do so. Otherwise you might have to learn how to make Birria Tacos yourself. As my buddy Grant says, water your own grass. The memes about why chains are bad ignore the fact that the people who work at Walmart or Applebee’s have kids, too, and if you follow that logic, do you want their kids to be denied ballet lessons?

It’s never made sense to me.

The Carone Party. Rob Portman announces his retirement, and in that unnamed state up north, what happens the next day?

I am not sure “we the people” deserve this, but the GOP. Sure. To people who have confused Christianity and politics, well, Numbers 23:23 speaks volumes:

Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought!

If you’re like me, you might add a question mark to the end of that.

Snitching and “cancel culture”… Ben Dreyfuss has a really good take on it which you should read.

Tempus Fugit… John Cornyn apparently has a short memory.

A tale in two acts…

The Hut tries Detroit Pizza. I will admit I read this story and immediately wanted to order some Little Caesar’s, but my wife looks askance at this practice. I end up ordering too much. (Don’t blame me, it’s good and cheap!)

Pizza Hut seems to be in a weird place, like Papa Johns, that hasn’t reached death spiral yet. I wish them luck with the new style, and hope to try it. Even if they don’t deliver to me, despite being 2 miles away. But rather than order from Little Caeser’s, I just made pizza at home. Whether it passed the Time Value of Money concept I am too lazy to calculate.

More punishment, please… I’m sorry, but fining two rich people $1,000 (Canadian!) is total fucking bullshit.

Walk through the moral hazard scenarios. This is Canada, so I can’t tell them as an American how they ought to operate, but these people, a millennial C-list actress and her older husband of no notoriety, so far as it has been reported:

  • Used a private jet to fly to a rural native community. (Expensive as heck!)

  • Lied to government officials (Very bad!)

  • Jumped to the front of the line to get the vaccine (Very bad!)

And now are paying a collective $1,000 Canadian fine. I’m sorry but screw that. If the penalty for jumping the line is $500 US a person, people are going to do that with reckless abandon.


The Bakers were both charged under the territory’s Civil Emergency Measures Act, which carries a maximum fine of C$500 ($392) plus a C$75 surcharge, six months in jail, or both.

Why aren’t they also being charged with other things? Falsifying a government document or something? I don’t know. I don’t know Canadian law.

But if the penalty is not even $1,000 for two people, what is going to stop others from trying this?

It’s going to happen here to an even more TMZ worthy degree, because I suspect (since I know Canadians) that we are even more selfish than they are when it comes to human nature.

What are we going to do? I personally think the best answer is prison. It’s their greatest fear. If you lie or cheat to jump the line when we’re letting prisoners out because of COVID-19, you have to take their place.

I don’t make the rules, but if I did, that’d be one of them.

Speaking of jumping the line… Should teachers get to do this if there is a fight about whether or not they have to go back to work? My old colleague Rory Cooper writes at The Washington Post the answer should be no.

That’s it for me for today. We’ll see you tomorrow. Questions, observations, comments, you know how to reach me: