The voters of Virginia’s Seventh Congressional District don’t need another reason to send Rep. Dave Brat (R) packing this November — but yesterday he gave us one.
Like people of conscience around the world, Brat’s constituents are horrified by the images and sounds of families being torn apart by U.S. border agents. Here in the Seventh, we’ve been making Brat’s office phone ring off the hook. The staffer I reached on Monday assured me that the Congressman opposes family separation.
(Maybe this phone jockey was the same person who promised me in November 2016 that the Congressman would protect health care for Americans with pre-existing conditions? Spoiler: Dave didn’t.)
Next, I asked the staffer what Rep. Brat would actually do to reunite families. This one was a stumper for him, until he remembered to tell me that our favorite ex-seminarian was appearing on FOX “News” to address the issue, and that I could check out Brat’s comments there. When I compared notes with other Seventh District residents, it looked like this was the only answer Brat’s staff was authorized to give.
So what did Dave Brat (R – Seminary, Economist School) have to say about the Trump administration’s brutal family separation policy? Not much. Possibly for the first time ever, he didn’t even remember to mention that he went to seminary. As shameless as Brat is, maybe he couldn’t defend the notion that ripping a breastfeeding infant from its mother lines up with the Judeo-Christian values he loves to crow about.
Dodgin’ Dave danced around the topic as much as possible. He tut-tutted about the need to respect “the rule of law” (not the Refugee Act of 1980, which codified the international Refugee Convention of 1951 apparently; but why split hairs?) He repeated an easily debunked claim that building a border wall would stop the opioid epidemic. He and anchor Harris Faulkner even took time to praise each other for asking and answering “tough questions.” (Yeah, right. Faulkner actually thanked Brat for explaining — i.e., lying about — the Republican legislative agenda, not even pretending to be a journalist who should be informed on the topic herself.)
One thing that Brat did have to say, though, tells us everything we need to know about the Republican agenda.
“Take care of the kids and family separation – we can do that tomorrow morning if they show up to play ball and compromise.”
By “they,” Brat means House Democrats, and by “play ball,” he means sacrifice their own principles and rubber stamp one of the Republican hardline immigration bills currently under consideration. These bills, mind you, do absolutely nothing to end family separation. Dave just wants to change the subject from this indefensible practice, precisely because it’s indefensible.
Of course, Republicans hold a majority in the House. It’s baffling why Brat would insist that Democrats need to cave in and support one of the Republican bills. (Or not THAT baffling: House Republicans can’t keep their own caucus together and the Republican toddler-in-chief might not sign a bill his own White House staff worked on, just because he doesn’t feel like it at the moment.)
The entire purpose of this Faux “News” interview, which Brat offered to his constituents in response to their rage and pain, was to blame the whole horrible situation on Democrats. That, of course, simply isn’t so (aka, it’s a LIE). Over in the Senate, every Democrat and not one Republican supports a bill that would keep families together. President Trump and his executive branch could reverse the zero tolerance policy that led to this travesty any time.
And the House? Just listen to Dave Brat.
We could help these kids tomorrow morning, Brat says of his fellow Republicans.
But they won’t. Because there’s nothing in it for them.
Watch this whole interview below, if you can stomach it. Then do something to help Democrat Abigail Spanberger beat Brat this November. There’s no “playing ball” with politicians, like Brat, who can’t or won’t argue in good faith. We need to raise hell, and then we need to vote these jokers out.