The Universal Notebook: Republican creeps

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Remember CREEP, the Committee for the Re-Election of the President, the Nixon gang that played a role in the 1972 Watergate break-in? Well, those CREEPs look like choir boys next to the new generation of CREEPs – Corrupt Republican Extremists, Egomaniacs, and Perverts.

White House staffers H.R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman, legal counsel John Dean, Attorney General John Mitchell, special counsel Charles Colson, and CREEP security director James McCord were all convicted and sentenced to jail time and Richard Nixon was forced to resign under pressure from his own party.

Edgar Allen BeemThat’s not apt to happen today even though Donald Trump and his Big Lie mob actually tried to overthrow a free and fair election. Why? Because there aren’t that many honest Republicans in Congress anymore and the few that there are have been voted or driven out of office.

Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Illinois, one of the Republicans who served on the Jan. 6 committee, has said of the Trump GOP, “It’s not the party I ever joined. It’s around a person, and it’s kind of creepy, to be honest with you.”

The Republican Party now belongs to creeps like Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Matt Gaetz, Ted Cruz, and Josh Hawley. (Feel free to add your own favorites. DeSantis? Gosar? Collins? LePage? Poliquin?)

Rep. Greene of Georgia and Rep. Boebert of Colorado, you may recall, are the QAnon crazies who heckled President Biden during his State of Union Address, acting more like berserk WWE wrestling fans than members of Congress.

Greene is the looniest member of Congress, claiming not only that the 2020 election was stolen but that school shootings are fake and California wildfires are started by Jewish laser beams. Greene has called for the execution of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi; as a result, she has been stripped of all her committee assignments.

Boebert is the gun-nut who had her family pose with AR-15s for their Christmas card and spends most of her time attacking Muslim members of Congress. Boebert’s husband spent time in jail for exposing himself to two young women in a Colorado bowling alley; Boebert claims her hubby was just showing them his tattoos.

Rep. Gaetz of Florida has teamed up with Greene to promote Trump’s Big Lie and the revolutionary idea that the Second Amendment exists so that the American people can overthrow their own government. Gaetz is currently under investigation for trafficking an underage girl for sex. 

And those are just a few of the House Republican creeps.

In the U.S. Senate, of course, we have Sen. Cruz of Texas. His list of lunacies is long, topped perhaps by flying off to Cancun on vacation in the middle of the pandemic, but Cruz’s creepiest behavior might be his recent obsession with “Saturday Night Live” comic Pete Davidson’s love life, noting on a podcast that “that dude gets all these, like, hot women.”

And then there’s Sen. Hawley of Missouri. One of Trump’s most loyal toadies, Hawley is one of the creepiest Republicans because, given his Stanford University and Yale Law School education, he surely knows most of what he espouses to appeal to the Republican crazies is a crock. And Hawley’s interrogation of Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson set a new low in American judicial politics.

“What a creep this guy is,” observed comedian Jimmy Kimmel. “The senator from Missouri spent much of his 30 allotted minutes reading a list of child porn videos from a case the judge worked on – oh, that’s not a joke.”

Kimmel then added, “It’s funny listening to the same people who let the president get away with trying to overthrow the government call anyone soft on crime.”

The truth would be funny were it not so damn creepy.

Edgar Allen Beem has been writing The Universal Notebook weekly since 2003, first for The Forecaster and now for the Phoenix. He also writes the Art Seen feature.