Despite having lost more than 50 legal challenges to the vote in various states and getting rebuffed by the United States Supreme Court, President Donald Trump continues to undermine American democracy through his daily rants about a rigged election and his blatant attempts to get state legislators to steal a win for him in the Electoral College. His supporters are so stirred up by his fabrications that public officials from both parties in many parts of the country have received death threats and have found gun-toting mobs gathered on their front lawns.

And the response to all this by most Republicans has been shameful.

With a few brave exceptions, GOP elected officials have refused to take a stand against Trump’s self-serving demagoguery or the toxic extremism of so many of their constituents. Some have maintained a cowardly silence. Others, like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy, have pretended that what Trump and his clown car of lawyers are doing is merely normal due process. But McConnell, McCarthy and other Republican leaders are, in truth, playing a cynical game. They know Joe Biden won the election fairly and by more than seven million votes, but it is to their partisan advantage to have the president-elect come into office weakened by Trump’s foul shenanigans.

Perhaps even worse than McConnell and his ilk are the elected Republicans at both the state and national levels who have actively supported Trump’s gambit. The most vile case in point: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton – a man currently under investigation by the FBI – is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to invalidate the electoral votes of several key battleground states and, thereby, throw the election to Trump. No serious legal authority believes Paxton has a chance of pulling off this coup, but, to their endless disgrace, Republican attorneys general in 17 other states are joining him in the effort hoping to please Trump and appease his rabid followers.

This is no longer the party of Ronald Reagan or George H.W. Bush and certainly not the party of Abe Lincoln or Teddy Roosevelt. Trump’s attempt to overturn the results of the presidential election is a despicable, dangerous charade built on paranoia and nonsense, but it has made one fact clear: Today’s GOP is a warped ghost of a once great political party.

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