watch the votes

A month ago, Senator Jeff Flake took the floor and said, "Mr. President, I rise today to say 'enough'." His impassioned speech won him much praise. One Democratic Representative tweeted, "Dear Senator @JeffFlake: Welcome to the #Resistance."

That same day, Jeff Flake voted to continue to condone forced arbitrations by preventing a new rule from the consumer bureau from rolling out which would have allowed for class actions to put pressure on misbehaving companies.

Trump degrades every institution that he comes into contact with: our electoral process, the executive, the legislature, our judicial system, and so on. Dignity in these places is important, but it is never enough. One of the scariest parts of the current political moment is that it makes dignified politics a smoke screen for policies that steer us in the wrong direction. Trump's depressing absurdity normalizes already awful politics.

To wit, a politics of decency with no substance is not good politics. So when we see Republican actors gather enough decency to object to certain parts of the wrecking ball that is President Trump, we can't forget to watch the votes. When Republicans enter the floors of Congress to cast their votes for the tax bill, watch the votes. They say more than words ever will.