- Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) announced that he won’t seek re-election in a lengthy speech on the Senate floor, saying, essentially, that the country has gone to the dogs and he can’t win without playing to Trump’s base. It was a sad, dark speech that spoke in brutal terms about the president his party elected, although many over the course of Flake’s anti-Trump crusade have noted that he’s no moderate hero, and likes to preach a return to good old non-racist “conservative values” without seeming to realize that such a thing doesn’t quite exist. Is this a disingenuous play for 2020 or 2024? Is it just a savvy strategy to wriggle out of an uphill primary challenge next year? Maybe, maybe not. It certainly seems better than the boot-licking alternative. “It must also be said that I rise today with no small measure of regret,” he said during his address. “Regret, because of the state of our disunion, regret because of the disrepair and destructiveness of our politics, regret because of the indecency of our discourse, regret because of the coarseness of our leadership, regret for the compromise of our moral authority, and by our—all of our—complicity in this alarming and dangerous state of affairs. It is time for our complicity and our accommodation of the unacceptable to end.” [Washington Post, New York Times]
- Meanwhile, his party is aligning itself with theocratic psycho Roy Moore, who recently announced that the Supreme Court’s decision on gay marriage was “worse” than one that upheld slavery. [Politico, The Hill]
- ICYMI: a tiny, brand-new firm with 2 full-time employees in Ryan Zinke’s hometown somehow landed a huge contract to help rebuild Puerto Rico’s power grid. [Washington Post]
- What bump stock ban? [The Daily Beast]
This has been Barf Bag.