The religious right would have you believe that they just want a place at the table for Americans with “traditional values.” But one has to wonder what those “traditional values” are, considering that the nation’s so-called moral guardians continue to be all in for Donald Trump. Their support for him even in the face of his almost daily outrages almost amounts to idolatry–all because he has made clucking noises they like about rolling back abortion and marriage equality.
Well, it turns out we got another lovely example of this borderline idolatry on Thursday, just hours after Trump suffered one of his most humiliating defeats to date. The Senate voted in favor of a resolution disapproving of Trump’s declaration of a national emergency in order to grab more money for his pet project–a wall along the southern border. It wasn’t even close–59-41, with 12 Republicans breaking ranks to join all of the Democrats in opposing it.
The argument from those supporting this resolution was simple. Whatever they may have thought about the wall, they saw Trump’s declaration as a clear breach of the checks and balances enshrined in the Constitution. Take Jerry Moran of Kansas, for instance.
Moran supports the idea of a wall. However, he contended that if Trump’s emergency declaration were allowed to stand, it would open the door for future presidents to do end runs around “laws and appropriations approved by Congress.”
But such considerations didn’t appear to matter to Trump in the hours before the roll was called.
Nor did they seem to matter to one of Trump’s most diehard religious right supporters, Lance Wallnau. Within minutes of the Senate officially smacking Trump down, Wallnau hit the roof.
Wallnau was speaking in code when he was referring to “Baal donors.” That code is all too familiar to this left-leaning charismatic Christian. Baal, you will recall, is frequently referenced as a false god and an idol in the Bible. So unless I’m reading this wrong, Wallnau is effectively saying that voting for checks and balances is an act of idolatry.
Wait a minute. You mean to tell me that if Senators choose to uphold the oath they swore to uphold the Constitution, they’re committing idolatry? As twisted as that sounds, it’s the logical end to the religious right’s claims that God himself put Trump in the White House. To hear Wallnau and other fundies talk, if you oppose Trump, you’re opposing God’s plan for this country.
For instance, Wallnau himself would have you believe that opposing Trump gives the devil an open door into your house. So if you want to keep a president from having carte blanche to do an end run around the budget process when he sees fit, you’re putting out a welcome mat for the devil? Got it.
This isn’t the first time that Wallnau has shown open and disturbing contempt for democratic norms. Just before the 2018 election, he openly wished that Trump could give his critics the same treatment that Vladimir Putin gives his critics in Russia.
And now he believes standing up for checks and balances amounts to idolatry. Let there no longer be any doubt–Wallnau is preaching something close to fascism wrapped in the cross. And he’s doing so while propping up a man who may be the closest thing to a fascist we’ve seen to date in the White House.
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