GOP Russia report reflects Republican midterm fears

The threat to their survival in the midterm elections has left Republicans no choice other than to prop up President Trump.

From The Hill:

The GOP’s House Intelligence Committee report acknowledging Russian meddling in our elections but no collusion by the Trump campaign is like any bad crime fiction. We know how it’ll end before finishing the first chapter. No stunners here, no twists of plot. This is a political document written in a midterm election, for a midterm election, by Republican members of Congress who fear losing a midterm election.

There’s a well established corollary in any midterm election: The lower a president’s job approval, the more seats his party will lose in the House and the Senate. Those two factors are joined at the hip. Sometimes the right hip, sometimes the left, but basically tethered.

When Democrats won their majority in the 2006 midterm, President Bush’s job approval was at 38 percent. When they lost it in the 2010 midterm, President Obama’s job approval was at 45 percent. President Trump’s is consistently under 40 percent in Gallup’s weekly tracking. What happens down ballot? Energy. […]

That’s the crux of the problem for House Republicans in this midterm. It explains why the partisan report from Republicans who control the House Intelligence Committee was written even before the first word was formulated. Republicans may privately grit their teeth at President Trump’s incessant tweets, careening foreign policy, daily distractedness, and perhaps even evidence of some kind of collusion between his campaign and Russia in the 2016 election.

Publicly, however, they have no choice other than to prop him up.

Read the whole thing …