• Nathan Max

GOP Doesn't Grasp Definition of Unity

Steve Schmidt

Editor's Note: Steve Schmidt is one of the founding members of the Lincoln Project. He is a communications and public affairs strategist who has worked on several Republican campaigns, including John McCain's 2008 bid for the White House, and he is now a regular political contributor to MSNBC. On Thursday, Schmidt reacted to Republicans' complaints that Joe Biden's early presidential actions are not unifying. MaxNewsToday has assembled this 11-tweet thread and reprinted it as one easy-to-read op-ed for our ongoing segment, Schmidt Storm. It has been edited for grammar and clarity. Yesterday, Joe Biden called the American people to rise and face a confluence of great national crises. He called the American people to a great and difficult purpose, which is to endure the hardships yet to come, as we crush the virus that has killed 400,000 of our fellow Americans. Joe Biden called for us to love one another and to step back from the precipice of disunion and the cold civil war, turned briefly hot, that was started by a villainous and vile disgrace who he did not need to name. He called for unity. That call for unity was self-evidently sincere, and the crocodile tears of disingenuous GOP Senators, who are reacting to the lawful exercise of his presidential authority in rolling back Trump-era actions that were decisively repudiated in November is laughable. Let us consider unity for a moment. Joe Biden called for national unity, which doesn’t mean kowtowing to a cynical faction of GOP members of Congress, who have proven their stupendous bad faith and insincerity thousands of times over. Joe Biden won the election and Democrats control Congress. If there is to be unity, let it form around two great causes; the defense of American democracy and eradicating the death and economic suffering wrought by COVID-19. Many GOP members and the parasitic propagandists that pull their strings have a different concept of unity. They seem to be suggesting that unity requires our submission to a collective amnesia about the cause of the catastrophe we face as a nation. They seem to demand that we submit to an alternate reality where Donald Trump succeeded, and his actions should be enshrined as opposed to erased. Their definition of unity seems to be built on the absurd and stupid premise that the winner of the election must be considerate of the delusional sycophancy that self-poisoned the GOP to sate the insatiable ego and narcissism of a would-be dictator, who incited insurrection and disgraced his office. Unity seems to mean submission to the losers of an election by the winners. Unity in this country will be achieved through finding shared purpose in the name of the common good. Joe Biden has made clear that his hand is open, and he has extended it in good faith. Unity does not impose a requirement of naïveté or weakness on the part of the administration more Americans voted for than any other in the history of the United States. That Ted Cruz attended the inauguration is not a testament to his good faith; it is evidence of his shamelessness, capacity for deceit, sociopathy and cynicism. The president must act because we are beset by crises. Those actions should not be slowed in the name of the false definition of unity that many Republicans are trying to cynically establish. Elections have consequences. Unity doesn’t mean unconditional surrender by the majority to the minority.