There’s an unwritten code on “The View” — the greatest threat to our country is any electable Republican or any conservative who gets any traction in the media.
This week, “View” co-host Joy Behar went viral for calling Jesse Watters, the replacement for Tucker Carlson in the 8 p.m. time slot on Fox News, a “terrible person” and a bigot. It’s almost like the people who helped hound Carlson from the network just think anyone who’d accept a job there (aside from Geraldo Rivera, of course) is a racist and scoundrel and general waste of carbon.
So, imagine the not-surprise when the same panel that has been calling Donald Trump a threat to democracy for years also called the only credible opposition he’s faced thus far in the 2024 GOP presidential primary campaign a threat to democracy as well.
On Monday, shortly after Trump announced special counsel Jack Smith had sent him a letter stating the former president was the target of a criminal investigation regarding his actions on Jan. 6, 2021, the day of the Capitol incursion — usually a prelude to an indictment — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis told CNN that “this country is going down the road of criminalizing political differences.”
“I don’t think it serves us good to have a presidential election focused on what happened four years ago in January, and so I want to focus on looking forward,” DeSantis continued.
I don’t want to look back,” he said. “I do not want to see him — I hope he doesn’t get charged.
“I don’t think it will be good for the country. But, at the same time, I’ve got to focus on looking forward, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
So, instead of hating on Trump or DeSantis, the panel got to hate on Trump and DeSantis all at once.
Fair enough: This is their schtick and they’re going to milk it for all it’s worth.
It’s another thing, however, to go out and call DeSantis a “dictator,” which is exactly what Whoopi Goldberg — first among equals on the panel — did during Wednesday’s episode.
After a discussion about why GOP opponents weren’t using Trump’s indictments against him — I mean, aside from the obvious reason that nobody wants to exploit the weaponization of the Justice Department — Goldberg said, “What’s interesting about very many of these people who you’ve sort of talked about not even saying or admitting that anything wrong was done, it’s because they want to do the same thing.”
“DeSantis wants the same kind of country,” she said. “He believes — I believe that he wants to also be a dictator. I believe many of these folks who are defending this think this is an interesting prospect.
“I have to tell you, I never thought in my lifetime that I would see this country come as close to dictatorship as I’ve seen, ever.”Everyone on “The View” just let that one slide, because apparently any Republican who opposes the specter of the weaponization of the powers of the Department of Justice against the political opposition just wants to be a dictator.
I would have sworn that would mean they wanted the opposite of dictatorial government — i.e., a republic where the DOJ isn’t issuing criminal charges against a potential nominee for the party that doesn’t control the White House every few weeks — but thanks, Whoopi, for setting me straight on that.
Co-host Alyssa Farah Griffin — who worked in the Trump White House until the scales fell from her eyes, which was right about when the then-president became radioactive to the establishment — then gave her perspective.
“What’s crazy to me about this whole scenario,” she said, “is Donald Trump — there’s this big piece in The New York Times, we talked about it briefly yesterday — Donald Trump’s team around him now on the record saying his plans for a second term are to grow the executive branch and the powers of the presidency.”
Co-host Sara Haines said the move was “to eliminate checks and balances,” to which Goldberg responded, “That’s called dictatorship. Let’s call it what it is.”
So the guy who’s in the Oval Office now, who tried to use the power of the presidency to compel Americans to take a controversial vaccine and to illegally cancel student loan debt — is he a dictator for bypassing Congress on that? Is Joe Biden a dictator for floating the idea that the 14th Amendment could be used to supersede Congress on the debt ceiling?