The reverberations of the audacious anti-democracy stance that Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) revealed on Twitter during the last 24 hours continue to echo down the halls of Congress.
Senator Lee shocked Americans last night with a series of posts denigrating America’s democratic system as “rank” and undermining our democratic constitutional order as not “the objective” of our government.
Democracy isn’t the objective; liberty, peace, and prospefity are. We want the human condition to flourish. Rank democracy can thwart that.
— Mike Lee (@SenMikeLee) October 8, 2020
The libertarian-leaning senator’s posts immediately came under a barrage of criticism that called his statement out as the first outright expression of the up-to-now unstated desire of the Republican party to institute a non-representative, authoritarian, fascist state to replace our current democracy.
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) saw one of Senator Lee’s posts and responded this morning with a pithy comeback for the budding authoritarian in the GOP.
We’re not a democracy.
— Mike Lee (@SenMikeLee) October 8, 2020
Maybe we should be. https://t.co/AC5491EW56
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) October 8, 2020
It was a simple and easy way for the progressive legislator to cut to the heart of the matter.
Forget arguing over whether our nation is a true representative democracy or actually a republic. That question has already been answered quite definitively by , an opinion writer for The Washington Post, who concluded in an op-ed written over five years ago that the distinction is a false dichotomy since the United States is actually both a representative democracy and a constitutional republic.
The question indeed is not what form of government that we actually have at this moment in time but what form of government we need to have going forward: one that allows the elite class of billionaires to control the political process through secretive campaign contributions and high-priced lobbyists or one that actually represents the will of the citizens who actually cast their ballots expecting to see their representatives pass legislation that benefits their own well-being rather than that of the GOP’s corporate masters?
Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez wasn’t the only Democratic politician, progressive luminary, or even “Never-Trump” Republican to condemn Senator Lee’s fascistic philosophy. Here are some of the other responses to the Utah reactionary’s extremist interpretation of the Constitution.
Dear @SenMikeLee: The American people rejected your view that “Democracy isn’t the objective” when they ratified the 17th Amendment. You became a senator through rank democracy.
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) October 8, 2020
A 6th GOP justice was nominated by an impeached president who lost the popular vote by 3M, and will be confirmed by GOP senators representing 11M fewer Americans than their Dem colleagues, after Obama's pick couldn't even get a vote.
Mike Lee simply said the quiet part out loud. https://t.co/yVvzokxZtd
— Robert Reich (@RBReich) October 8, 2020
run against this guy. Someone should think about it. @ProjectLincoln
— Steve Schmidt (@SteveSchmidtSES) October 8, 2020
Even White House correspondents and Hollywood celebrities condemned the senator for his condescending elitist attitude towards allowing the rabble to have a voice in how they are governed.
"We the people" in your state elected you. Take a civics course. Democracy is the best means to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Your rank stupidity thwarts that. Read a history book @SenMikeLee then take a hike. We'll "flourish" just fine. https://t.co/z2AFJQD8LQ
— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) October 8, 2020
Get out. You are only where you are for the grace of democracy. Go hit the streets and get a regular job.
— Patricia Arquette (@PattyArquette) October 8, 2020
It seems as if Senator Lee’s tweets disrespecting the very concept of democracy have struck a nerve with anyone who believes in our nation’s founding principles as expressed in the U.S. Constitution which in its very opening words– “We the People” — exemplifies the supremacy of the people as the only legitimate source of government power.
A senator who does not believe in democracy should not be participating in our legislative body.
Senator Lee should resign or be recalled by the people of Utah before being allowed to continue to represent their state for the remaining four years of his term.
And let’s vote the rest of the GOP — the ones who believe what Senator Lee expressed about democracy, but are smart enough not to say it out loud — out of their offices while we’re at it.
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Vinnie Longobardo is the Managing Editor of Occupy Democrats. He's a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music, and art.