Yesterday, I titled my post “Yes!” Today–after the election of a new House Speaker–I can only retreat into “No!”

After nearly four weeks of total dysfunction, the House GOP elected a Speaker candidate–essentially, Jim Jordan without the public buffoonery and scandal baggage. According to the Washington Post, here are five things to know about this previously undistinguished culture-war Representative from deep-Red Louisiana.

First–and least surprising, although deeply troubling– he’s an election denier.He opposed certifying the 2020 election and urged Trump to “stay strong and keep fighting” as Trump tried to overturn his loss in the presidential race. He tweeted out a message urging Trump to fight the results, adding “We must exhaust every available legal remedy to restore Americans’ trust in the fairness of our election system.”

Johnson also objected to certifying Biden’s electoral win and was one of the architects of a legal attack on the election that consisted of arguing that states’ voting accommodations during the pandemic were unconstitutional. He led a group of 126 Republican lawmakers in filing an amicus brief to the Supreme Court alleging that authorities in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan had “usurped” the constitutional authority of state legislatures when they loosened voting restrictions because of the pandemic. The court rejected the underlying complaint — filed by the state of Texas — citing a lack of standing, and dismissed all other related motions, including the amicus brief.

Second, and extremely concerning, he was one of 57 lawmakers — all of them Republicans — who voted against a $39.8 billion aid package for Ukraine in May. Although a majority of GOP Representatives support aid to Ukraine, Johnson is not among them.

Third–and probably least surprising–Johnson, “a constitutional lawyer who identifies as a Christian,” opposes abortion. He actively celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, has insisted (via Twitter) that rights are not protected by government but “given by God,” and those God-given rights don’t include reproductive autonomy for women. He supports an absolute national ban on abortions.

The antiabortion nonprofit Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America gives Johnson an A+ ranking on this issue, stating that he “has voted consistently to defend the lives of the unborn and infants,” including by “stopping hard-earned tax dollars from paying for abortion, whether domestically or internationally.”

Fourth, his election cements the takeover of the GOP by Trumpers–as if there was any doubt.

He served on Trump’s legal defense team during his two impeachment trials in the Senate. He has called charges against Trump — which include a federal case relating to his attempts to overturn the 2020 election — “bogus,” and has said the legal and political systems have treated Trump unfairly.

Fifth, Johnson displays the anti-LGBTQ bigotry we’ve come to expect from the GOP’s pseudo-“Christian” culture warriors. He continues to oppose same-sex marriage, for example.

Johnson has positioned himself on the far right of the political spectrum on several social issues, even within the current conservative Republican conference. Notably, he introduced legislation last year — modeled after Florida’s “don’t say gay” bill — that would have prohibited discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as related subjects, at any institution that received federal funds. The Human Rights Campaign, a pro-LGBTQ civil rights organization, gave Johnson a score of 0 in its latest congressional scorecard.

Johnson also opposes gender-affirming care for minors and led a hearing on the subject in July. In a statement, he described gender-affirming care — meaning medical care that affirms or recognizes the gender identity of the person receiving the care, and which can include giving puberty or hormone blockers to minors under close monitoring from a doctor — as “adults inflicting harm on helpless children to affirm their world view.”

Health-care professionals, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, disagree, but Johnson and his ilk dismiss expertise of all kinds in favor of listening to the God they have created in their own image…

So here we are, fellow Americans.

I’d rate the likelihood that Congress will now begin attending to business somewhere between zero and minus-one on a ten-point scale; at best, we will be treated to a more regularized performance of hari-kari.

If the extreme public meltdown of one of the nation’s political parties was taking place at a less-fraught time, I might actually find watching it enjoyable. But with two wars raging and a government shutdown looming, it’s agonizing to watch ideologues and intellectually-vacuous incompetents take the helm of the ship of state.

Johnson is a good fit for a political party that has been reduced to trading on ignorance, hate and fear. He’s a disaster-in-the-making for a country that needs to return to its constitutional and philosophical roots.


  1. I am scared to death! I knew nothing about him when he was chosen but when I saw he was from LA I knew it wasn’t good for us in our country!

  2. It is my understanding that bible bangers like the new speaker are eager for a major war in the middle east as it is part of their end times fantasy. Scary indeed

  3. I have often thought that the GOP will continue on its downward spiral util the people of the nation get a belly full of it, and I still believe that is true. But the bottom keeps falling away, and there is no telling how much more it will take.

    As has been stated here and elsewhere, it will end only with a massive vote by the public against MAGA, and I do not have confidence in liberals to band together, even in the face of existential threats to American democracy that the current GOP represents.

    When a would-be autocrat tells you what they are going to do, pay attention. That is exactly what they will do.

  4. It appears the House republicans are emulating the republican base in general by nominating the worst possible candidate ( or one of the worst) fo any particular office. They know their platforms are unpopular with a large segment of the voting public so they ignore that public and serve only their cultish base and those billionaires who thrive on the chaos. I’ve lso stted repeatedly you simply can not be a real, practicing, believing Christian and a trump supporter. Apparently Mr Johnson follow “republican Jesus” a mango colored obese “biblical” figure who looks and acts like a demented billionaire who has never won a popular vote and thinks the world revolves around himself. Maybe the good news is the folks who don’t normally pay attention will notice the far rights destructive and autocratic tendencies and vote blue in 2024.

  5. Human industrial sulfuric acid drain opener!

    Not to be used in PVC drains or sewer lines! What happens? Sulfuric acid will melt the pipe! Thereby, rendering waste removal inoperative!

    Instead of a healthy environment, one would wallow in deep deep doo doo!

    They don’t make boots high enough to accomplish anything in that environment. One would need a deep diving suit!

    This plumbing system needs to be ripped out by governmental plumbers, and replace it with a brand new functional sewage and waste removal system.

  6. Ukraine’s Parliament just voted to remove church influence from government. Ukrainian and Russian Orthodox. They see the dysfunction that religion brings to government. The Ukrainian ship is signaling danger ahead, reverse course, but the American ship just keeps heading for the Bermuda triangle while the band is playing on deck, lol!

  7. “So here we are, fellow Americans.”

    “I’d rate the likelihood that Congress will now begin attending to business somewhere between zero and minus-one on a ten-point scale; at best, we will be treated to a more regularized performance of hari-kari.”


    I certainly agree with the first two paragraphs from Sheila today. You go, girl!

    However, it’s about Republicans, and I’m a Democrat, liberal.

    At best, this “news” shows the meltdown of the party of my long-deceased staunch Republican parents. It bodes well for us liberal Democrats in next year’s Biden vs Trump Presidential election.

    I think it’s a Democrat dream match-up for 2024.

  8. Fine! Now let’s see the be-speckled twerp run that Congress with all of its Republican competing factions after their own agendas.

  9. I can’t muster much additional outrage/fear/concern over this guy. I mean, it wasn’t likely the speaker of the house wasn’t going to be exactly on brand, was it? This seems to fall firming into the “well, yeah” category.

  10. Robert Hubbell’s newsletter today is prominently tilted “A choice Republicans will regret.” Hubbell notes that Speaker Johnson “is already being batted around by Matt Gaetz and other extremists who are claiming that Johnson made ‘doomed-to-fail’ deals in order to become Speaker.” For example, Hubbell reports that Gaetz claims Johnson won’t propose a continuing resolution to keep the government operating because “It’s not part of the plan,” even though Johnson sent a “Dear Colleague” letter that presupposes a continuing resolution by the end of November. Hubbell concludes that “(i)n a few hours on Wednesday evening, it became clear that Johnson will be an albatross around the neck of every vulnerable Republican in districts won by Joe Biden in 2020.”

    I agree with James that the GOP is continuing on its “downward spiral” and likely is near the bottom of its swamp of irreconcilable lies tied to a leader whose personal freedom is in imminent jeopardy. It hard to imagine that it could get any worse for Republicans.

  11. It is a colossal tragedy to put an idiot ideologue in the Speaker’s chair. But, people on this blog have indicated for years what an abject failure the Republican party is and why it won’t/can’t govern for the people. This “party” is the wholly owned and operated entity of corporate/banking America. CBA WANTS fascism. They WANT to end democracy and destroy the Constitution.

    Why? Because, in their tiny, short-term, compartmentalized minds, they see getting MORE profits for they stockholders and themselves as the big win. They spit on, ironically, the very people who have made them rich. THESE are the sponsors of the Republican party.

    I’m glad I’m old.

  12. Sadly this fellow is not even the bottom of the barrel for the GOPigers! But, he’s what/who is there. As reported elsewhere, yesterday, he told his crowd, in a meeting yesterday, that his god, essentially, has arranged for them to be there, so he is already , happily, breaching the boundary between church and state. This boundary may be in more serious jeopardy now, than ever before.
    The only good thing that may come out of this is a determined vote to oust these buffoons, in ’24.

  13. Clearly – the Republicans are on a path of trying to – Do Whatever it Takes – to try to win the 2024 elections – through – Donald Trump. If that – relates to trying to Tank the Economy – or get an opportune war or – turn on Anything Done by Biden and the Dems – they’ll do it. The key issue – of course is the combination of the U.S. voters and Dem Politicians. How competent/incompetent – will both be. IF – for example – the “popular” opinion – is that the Reps are “better at managing the economy” – they will attempt to – make the Economy Horrible – around April-July, 2024 – to destroy the credibility of Biden – when it really matters. Just a simple example – we will see – and we will either – Avoid a Disaster – or be in the Middle of it.

  14. Will the extreme gerrymandering in red states make it impossible for citizens to replace their current far-right bible thumping/intellectually-vacuous representatives? They shamelessly bend or break the rules and laws in order to maintain and/or steal more power.

    Indiana’s Jim Banks is very pleased with the new Speaker. Who knows what kind of extra power this will give to Banks for his Senate campaign. The MAGA far right keeps pushing our country closer to a civil or revolutionary war. Eventually, the masses will fight back when they realize they have absolutely no power or control over their own lives.

  15. This isn’t puzzling at all…why wouldn’t the MAGA Republicans plug in a psycho-speaker of the house?

    Unless the Democrats in Washington grow a brass set and start clobbering these buffoons, we’ll get more of the same. Once again, thanks, Nancy Pelosi, for letting their worst off the hook. Karma smacked her hubby; now it’s her turn.

    The pendulum is so far to the right and stuck in crazy land. Can our youth get it moving again back to the left?

  16. Just what the world needs: A Constitutional Scholar, who doesn’t read the Constitution as a whole document, but picks out only those parts the seem to be in agreement with his personal beliefs. Why isn’t he on the Supreme Court? He seems to be a perfect Trumpian pick.

  17. We are so in to the transgender cult that we are willing to trash anyone who wont vote for children being indoctrinated in our schools before they at the age of 12? We arent even teaching the basics in public schools and this article makes it clear why so many in the black community are jumping ship. Begging to get vouchers and care less concerned with integration and are more concerned about their kids coming home as gender dysphoric.
    We are heading down the erongbpath itcwill eventually backfire on us.
    China has in its one child policy has aborted 400 million children and sociologists report China is having difficulty economically with their population becoming age challenged. Their goals economic domination are diminished. In the US 60 million have been aborted and now both sides are looking at immigration as a necessary thing.
    63% of children that are gender dysphoric eventually acknowledge they are gay as adults. Does that mean we continue down the path of using the argument of gender affirming care for minors as good or evil? … as some in the gay community are looking at possible populations of gays being transgendered instead? Not good because we are putting children on gender affirming drugs before they can reach adulthood and develop their bodies correctly?
    Coming out isnt a bad thing for many but getting ghem to do corrective surgeries before they work through puberty is wrong. Puberty blockers have never been cleared for the reason that no studies for this purpose have been doneand the results so far are disastrous for many.
    Its science. But lets jump on the bandwagon of fear mongering, lets divide this country.

  18. Here is a link to a brief article in today’s edition of the Ohio Capitol Journal that provides a thorough history of Mike Johnson’s background prior to his election to the House, along with what he has supported or fought against while in the House.

  19. After reading about Johnson’s election, I couldn’t muster any outrage, only a resigned sigh. He’s just Jim Jordan in a Mike Johnson suit. I’m not overly encouraged by Mr. Hubble’s assessment that the sharks are already circling to take Johnson down (although it’s a little amusing), because it indicates that the dysfunction will continue, and with Johnson holding the gavel, the prospect of a government shutdown is even more likely. These people are more than willing to burn the house down just to “prove” that the Dems can’t be trusted to guard the matches.

  20. We are back to ye ole church and state with the just-appointed Brother Mike as speaker (and president #3 in line of presidential succession!). I see an historical parallel. Thus the Holy Roman Empire (which had bubonic plagues rather than Ukrainian War budgets with which to contend) whose peoples had no vote since their emperors were appointed by popes (the ultimate in church-state admixture) is a good example of where we may be headed. Appointing popes thought little of the governing qualifications of the emperors they appointed back then (e.g., one of their most famous emperors, Charlemagne, could neither read nor write). Such so-called Holy Roman emperors were, after all, mere conduits for Vatican policies and prerogatives. The popes called the shots, much as Trump today though out of office calls the shots for his cultists and political opportunists.

    So substitute popes with Trump as the Appointer and his cultists as Charlemagnes without portfolio and you have the rough equivalent of today’s Republican attempts to reverse the lessons of the Enlightenment and Madisonian democracy while reinstating the church’s role in Central Europe refashioned for the 21st century. Brother Mike is a mere conduit for Pope Trump, whose approval was necessary for Brother Mike’s elevation into leadership of the House by a “pope” who is about as far from being a “Holy Father” as I can imagine.

    I think that if amalgamation of church and state becomes the order of the day our democracy is kaput, over, done, and that Father Trump will be the first of many “popes” following who will appoint our emperors, all without voting, adherence to a dead Constitution etc., since God has spoken.

    Far out analysis with my morning coffee? Perhaps, but tell me how far out the present situation is where the Magas are not politicians as we know them but rather destructive nihilists intent on “burning it all down?”

  21. John S –

    Did you fail elementary school grammar lessons or are you just too lazy to type your own comments? I typically ignore your comments, but the last sentence in your comment posted at 10:24 caught my eyes and it states “But lets jump on the bandwagon of fear mongering, lets divide this country” appears to perfectly describe what you choose to focus on – the extreme far right’s fear mongering on culture issues. They’ve managed to completely suck you into their vacuum. By convincing vulnerable people like you to spend so much time focusing on battling culture issues this leaves much less time and energy to pay attention to the truly important issues that will affect your personal freedoms and economic interests.

    The right wing gop figured this out decades ago. While they are busy in Congress giving their corporate and uberwealthy campaign donors even more tax breaks and more ways to hide their incomes and profits, the people that choose to watch and/or listen to right wing media are fed ‘news’ that is full of lies. If the main far-right media sources provided factually true news coverage they could no longer keep people tuned in 24/7 and their massive profits would nose-dive. This is why Newsmax and Fox very rarely, if ever, interview GOP moderates and Democrat politicians because the viewers would actually hear the truth about what is taking place.

    I hope you will consider ignoring the culture issues that right-wing media uses to keep your attention away from the real issues that will actually affect your life and our country.

  22. Gerald Stinson –

    Your analogy of our current situation with the Holy Roman Empire’s history is spot on and very frightening.

  23. He’s too bright to be a true believer. He’s a con man just like most religious leaders and GOP politicians. They don’t believe this stuff. They just want fortune and glory.

  24. Johnson is a brilliant choice. With most of your reactions confirming. I really don’t know WHERE you all get your news but apparently you are unaware of other sources where conservatives obtain information other than Fox news!!!
    You just spit out the leftist talking points.

    To back up John S, about the “ transgender” cult, here is an article from Fortune Magazine about that very issue.

    In reality, all you self proclaimed “atheists” are really fighting “GOD” and that’s what makes you
    sooooooo angry. Because anger is the predominant emotion on this blog.

  25. Nancy – Voltaire, the French Mark Twain of his day, famously and correctly noted that “The Holy Roman Empire was neither Holy, Roman, nor an Empire.”

    So we know what it was not, but what was this mixture of serfdom and a promise of eternal life as dished out by Roman popes, and how did it work out in practice? Pre-Luther Catholicism had a monopoly on what one must and must not do in order to gain entrance into heaven at the time, but apparently did not follow their own dictates since popes have led armies (thou shalt not kill?). sent crusaders to the Holy Land to expel the Saracens etc., and according to one historian, such crusaders raped more Christian women en route to the Holy Land than Saracen women after their arrival there, all of which was apparently no impediment to a pass from Saint Peter at the gates of heaven as interpreted by the popes of that day.

    Sounds to me like the popes of that day were politicians – and we know how that worked out. It didn’t, and now that we have had a taste of democracy and self-government I think and hope the genie is out of the bottle, never to return since, as I often write: Our democracy is the most precious asset we hold in common, and one of the last few things worth dying for.

  26. I suspect John and Becky are trolls. I ignore their posts because it was apparent from their first efforts that they are completely enthralled or deliberately, willingly misinformed or worse, maybe intentionally malicious.

    Johnson will prove to be a puppet, with tfg’s tiny hands pulling the strings.

    Being completely inexperienced and ideologically compromised, he will be calling tfg or his henchmen for instructions before he does anything, or more to the point, does nothing.

    The House is being set on fire, figuratively. The Reichstag was set on fire as a strategic move to put Hitler and the Fascists in power. But, remember, it happened with the willing complicity of the populace, no matter the motivation.

    If we surrender to the fascists, whether through self-interst, ennui or cynicism, we are then complicit in the result.

  27. Republican Party continues to sink lower and lower. This isn’t rock bottom, so it’s likely to get much worse in order to inflict enough pain that people are willing to leave and make a change. Listening to Alexandra Pelosi talking on Bill Mayer about her new documentary “The Insurrectionist Nextdoor “. She said some people that went to the capitol on January 6th had not seen the footage of people storming the capitol. They have their own news cycle that does not show that news. People living in news bubbles. I think that’s why it seems unfathomable to me that people are still following Trump. Because for me seeing the evidence & believing it to be true and that many Trump appointees have confirmed, I have the knowledge to make a rational judgment on his behavior. They are not seeing what I’m seeing. And when you’re told that’s all fake news & you drink the cool aid, I guess that’s how this division continues. Sadly, for many it will take a personal experience like maybe your daughter or wife will have an ectopic pregnancy and be on the verge of death before she’s given the health care she needs to survive. Or maybe a miscarriage that requires a D & C & they can’t get the healthcare they need because in Indiana we let dumbass state legislators with no medical training or experience make healthcare decisions for half the population.

  28. Jamie Raskin was interviewed in regard to the election of Mike Johnson as the new speaker. Raskin said that no one is right of Johnson in the house, and that Johnson believes in his fundamental evangelical religious tenets. Raskin made a comparison of Johnson to an extreme authoritarian in the “Hand Maids Tale”.
    tfg is still directing the Magas in Congress. Stefanic said that they were standing up to the federal government trying to take out Bidens leading competitor. How they could still be backing tfg for POTUS is too irresponsible and continues to hurt Americans. The time and expense elected Republicans have wasted in Congress is deplorable.

  29. JD. Im no troll. I belong to this community and have a solid opinion based on facts. I fear religious zealots who want to take away freedoms as well as a party that will turn out bills and vote lock, stock and barrel, through the radical left woke left. Its always the middle class and poor that get hit hardest. Affirming gender care bills contain legislation that will push for youths to bypass solid psychological help and attack those who know surgeries for children is wrong. Other countries, European countries are writing laws that agree with Johnsons pause.
    And when I agree with someone I mention their name. I consider it immature to attack people if I disagree. I agree with Shiela on articles at times, but my moderate voice needs to be heard and understood, not necessarily agreed with.

  30. Sorry to be pedantic, but for future reference:

    hari-kari —> hara-kiri

    hara = stomach
    kiri = cut

Comments are closed.