The day after the election last week, there appeared in our local newspaper (The Northern Virginia Daily) an article featuring Ben Cline, who had just been elected to the seat (VA-06) vacated by Trump-accomplice Bob Goodlatte.
In addition to some of the traditional Republican garbage (like the idea that Democrats kill the economy with their regulations– despite the fact that over the decades the economy has grown more under Democrats than under Republicans), Cline gave clear signals that he is going to join this Republican President and his Republican minions in Congress in their attempt to obstruct justice.
Something doesn’t have to be a surprise to be an outrage, and I felt that Cline — stepping right into Goodlatte’s shoes as a GOP party hack — simply had to be called out. So I wrote this letter-to-the-editor, which will be appearing in that same newspaper:
I was appalled by the comments from our Congressman-elect Ben Cline (quoted in the NVD of 11/8).
On a week that President Trump fired an Attorney General whose “sin” was to do what Justice Department regulations required of him (recuse himself); and has replaced him with a new AG whose only qualification seems to have been a publicly expressed willingness to put the President above the law; and a week when this same President threatened the Democrats that if they do what the Constitution requires of them to oversee the executive branch and, when necessary, act as a check on him, he would take a “warlike” stance against them…
On such a week, Ben Cline comes out with baseless insinuations to discredit both avenues of inquiry into possible presidential wrong-doing as supposedly partisan exercises.
As if the good, lifelong Republicans running the Mueller Investigation somehow are partisans opposed to this Republican President.
As if the Democrats had not been given a mandate by the American people, who gave the Democrats their largest gains in the House in more than 40 years, since the last time we were witness to crimes being committed in the Oval Office.
As if Trump weren’t obstructing justice regularly right out in the open (in ways Nixon did only behind closed doors), driving the nation into a crisis that threatens the American constitutional democracy.
And so I am appalled to see Ben Cline signaling so clearly that in the battle between lies and the truth, between his Trump Party and the Constitution that Delegate (and Congressman-to-be) Cline has already sworn a sacred oath to defend, he’s going to put himself squarely on the wrong side.
If that’s the case, I want to say to him: You may have won the election, but you don’t represent me.
And I expect there are, among the Republican voters whose support has elevated Cline to his new position, there are some genuine American patriots who feel the same about that as I do.
Protecting our Constitution and the American democracy it has given us is an obligation that goes way deeper than any “issues” that traditionally divide conservatives and liberals.
That last sentence, I should note, can be seen as a kind of “preview of coming attractions.” In 2015, I ran against Mark Obenshain for the Virginia State Senate seat in District 26. This district is 70-30 Republican. (It even went 60% for the execrable Corey Stewart.)
In view of how the Party of Trump (and Cline, and Obenshain) are attacking the foundations of our constitutional democracy, I have decided that I will take on Obenshain again in the upcoming 2019 election.
At such a time, and in such a district, I feel it incumbent (pardon the expression) on me to hammer home that essential point that so many of these Republican voters seem to have forgotten:
“Protecting our Constitution and the American democracy it has given us is an obligation that goes way deeper than any ‘issues’ that traditionally divide conservatives and liberals.”
I am just gearing up my campaign. I don’t yet have a website, but I have a fundraising page at Act Blue. Donations can be made to support my upcoming campaign to defeat Mark Obenshain. Here’s the link.