Rachel Maddow looked at the recent events involving Republicans in Michigan, Ohio, Arizona, and Tennessee and painted a picture of a party that is completely out of step and growing more extreme.

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Maddow said:

But, you know, if we’re looking for a top prize here, like step right up. Ohio in contention, obviously, Michigan in contention with their repeated fistfights at Republican party statewide meetings. Arizona obviously in contention with a neo-nazi college Republican speaking tour. But I think if somebody is going to take the cake in this current news cycle, it’s probably not the Republican parties in any of those states. It’s probably Tennessee.

You might have seen over the weekend that there was a weekend ruling from a federal appeals court in Tennessee. Tennessee Republicans have been going after trans people every way they can. A federal appeals court this weekend on Saturday in a divided 2-1 decision let that state go forward with banning specific kinds of health care for trans people. And this is not some, you know, some distant threat or something that’s kind of locked up in the courts now. Thanks to that appeals court ruling, again, on Saturday, this weekend, for people under the age of 18, that ruling this weekend means whatever ongoing health care they have been getting in Tennessee, it is now officially illegal. That ruling went into effect immediately. Any such health care, ongoing health care that you’ve previously been receiving has to stop immediately.

But that’s also happening in the context of this other thing that Republicans are doing in the state of Tennessee. I do think puts them sort of at the front of the line right now. The Republican state attorney general in Tennessee is using his office to obtain the private medical records, unredacted full medical records for patients who have had care at a particular clinic in Tennessee at the Vanderbilt university medical center. He’s using his office as attorney general to take people’s individual private unredacted medical records for the purposes of an investigation in his state attorney general’s office. Now Vanderbilt university medical center says that they had no choice but to hand over the records after the attorney general demanded them, but they also didn’t notify their patients that they had handed over their records until after they had already started handing them in.

The Michigan Republican Party’s descent into Lord Of The Flies type chaos is funny, but it shows how extreme and dysfunctional they have become. Arizona College Republicans are embracing nazism, which is a long term threat that needs to be monitored. Ohio Republicans are trying to outlaw people from being able to vote against them which is an overt attack on democracy, but what is going on in Tennessee is chilling.

The former party of small government and privacy is using the biggest of big government tactics to violate the rights of people in Tennessee and deny them access to healthcare.

After the 1/6 attack, it became clear the extremism of the right was no longer something to be chuckled at and brushed off.

Republicans are a dangerous threat, and the more elections that they lose, the more extreme they become in response. By looking at the rundown that Rachel Maddow provided, it is clear why Republicans, but what isn’t so easy to see is how or if they are interested in stopping their plunge into authoritarianism.



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