While Republicans try their damndest to place as many restrictions as possible on who can vote in elections, perhaps their party would be better served by new restrictions on who is actually eligible to run for office.
The GOP would be immensely less harmful and embarrassing if they simply instituted a minimum IQ standard that candidates must meet before running for office under the Republican brand.
Just imagine how many of the party’s rising stars would be out of work had the GOP instituted this rule before the 2020 elections — Congresswomen Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Lauren Boebert (R-CO) come immediately to mind — and how the entire ordeal of the Trump presidency could have been avoided had they applied such a rule before the 2016 election.
In the absence of such common-sense candidate regulation, however, we are faced today with the spectacle of Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX) demonstrating the necessity of better quality control in the Republican lawmaker ranks.
Rep. Gohmert set a new low bar for scientific acumen with a question during a House Natural Resources Committee hearing that makes one wonder whether the Texas legislator ever paid attention in high school.
“I understand, from what’s been testified to the Forest Service and the BLM, you want very much to work on the issue of climate change,” Gohmert stated. “I was informed by the immediate past director of NASA that they found that the moon’s orbit is changing slightly and so is the Earth’s orbit around the sun. We know there’s been significant solar flare activities, and so, is there anything that the National Forest Service or BLM can do to change the course of the moon’s orbit or the Earth’s orbit around the sun? Obviously, that would have profound effects on our climate.”
If Gohmert had asked a similar question of an official representing NASA, then perhaps his comments would not have inspired such mockery on social media, but his expectations of planetary orbit-changing capabilities of the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management seem to be poorly considered to say the least.
While the expert witness to which Congressman Gohmert was addressing his question let him off gently with her diplomatic response to his bizarre query — “I would have to follow up with you on that one, Mr. Gohmert,” she answered — the responses to a video of the question posted on Twitter were not so kind.
I watched, thinking there is context that comes in to play, but Gohmert truly delivers as the "dumbest person in Congress" here. Jfc, how does he get elected?
— BgMac Vaxxed and still Masked (@bgmacneill) June 9, 2021
And graduated “MAGA scream loudly”
— Tracy Roberts (@TracyR_2001) June 9, 2021
That was years ago. They're all much worse now.
— Gritty is the Way (@Gritty20202) June 9, 2021
I disagree. She should've blasted him for asking such a stupid question.
— TimTimNotTim (@TimTimNotTim1) June 9, 2021
Just saw this clip and now I feel like a f-ing genius.
— SpartanGirl (@susie_belttari) June 9, 2021
Is he talking Bureau of Land Management or Black Lives Matter. Considering the level of stupidity in that clip I’m honestly not sure.
— #WearADamnMask (@GPSparty) June 9, 2021
Since shame alone no longer seems sufficient to drive unqualified people out of Congress, the passage of minimum intelligence qualifications for legislators seems to be the only solution that can prevent people like Louis Gohmert from being among the people determining our nation’s future.
Let’s all urge our lawmakers to begin drawing up a bill to create an SAT level test for our representatives that can separate the highly functioning from those who would be better off repeating a grade or two.
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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.