Transfer over, Florida. Texas Republicans aren’t going to play second fiddle to anybody relating to killing off their very own voters for political factors. It is a state that can blow you up, freeze you to dying in your house, or flip your native mall meals courtroom right into a free-fire zone if it’s going to let the subsequent Texas conservative print a brand new bullet level on their marketing campaign flyers. Nothing says “freedom” like a blanket authorities mandate laid down on each enterprise within the state demanding that not one rattling one in every of them implement the quickest doable strategy to finish a nationwide pandemic outright.
A lot of the ensuing commentary has centered across the peculiarity of Abbott posturing as a defender of freedoms whereas signing some very specific “limits, restrictions, or necessities” on what Texans can or can’t do, however this has at all times been Republicanism’s tentpole. “Freedom” means the best to limit your freedoms; “liberty” means the best to disregard no matter restrictions your neighbors attempt to place on you.
Objecting to both half of that equation is met with frequent allusions to the Second Modification and darkish intonations that nicely perhaps “put a masks over your snot holes throughout a well being emergency” is the ultimate straw and that if you are going to press the problem there’s going to have to be a number of homicide round right here to set issues proper. You possibly can’t inform me what to do with my face holes. It’s not a uterus.
If it looks like you’re listening to the identical tales again and again, relating to vaccines, Texas, Florida, and Republicans, you’re not imagining issues. The celebration has set a stool beneath this cow and we’re going to be right here till they’ve extracted each final self-promotional drop. Abbott introduced an govt order fairly much like this new regulation over two months ago, and one which seemed to have some significant legal problems in forcing companies not to take well being precautions.
As for Abbott? Sigh. Simply one other day in Republicanism because the post-Trump celebration makes an attempt to seek out its new Pricey Chief, somebody who rejects science and booklearnin’ and primary decency towards anybody not of their church group. Whether or not the brand new regulation helps unfold the lethal virus whilst we appear on the cusp of quashing outbreaks elsewhere might be much less necessary to Abbott than selling his signature as press-release response to Florida Man DeSantis’ headline-grabbing anti-vaxxer war against his state’s cruise ship industry. Gotta sustain, in spite of everything. Gotta show you could be as reckless as anybody else.
Once more: Simply presume all the things that both Abbott or DeSantis does is completed in service to a want to maneuver up Republicanism’s ranks. At each decrease and better rank of celebration hierarchy, presume the identical intent. You will not ever be flawed, and it is doubly true for something that entails the general public security of anybody who’s Not Them.
If you’re the playing type, although, you possibly can in all probability guess your 2024 chips on DeSantis, not Abbott. DeSantis has discovered the central lesson of Trumpism, which is that the bottom craves extremism on the size that almost all fashionable politicians wouldn’t dare give them. DeSantis has leapt into that crevasse with no wire connected and no look after the place the underside could be. Abbott, in distinction, appears largely a copycat. He’ll soar on no matter paranoia you inform him to, however solely after different members of his celebration have already overwhelmed these speaking factors into the bottom.