We’d completely forgotten that retiring Arizona Senator Jeff Flake had even written a book. “Conscience of a Conservative” reportedly explained Flake’s break with the Republican party on many issues, which of course resonated with the New York Times’ Jennifer Senior, who gave the book a positive review.

But now she’s taking that review back.

So why praise Flake’s book and then change your mind? Senior maintains that Flake is a class act, but …

But are these our only standards for Trump critics? Good manners?

When his book came out last year, I saluted Flake for doing something politically contraindicated and Rubicon-crossing, establishing himself as the first Republican senator to call President Trump the domestic and international menace that he is. I applauded him for describing the president’s tweets as “all noise and no signal” and for daring to charge his administration with Orwellian doublespeak, “dividing us along fissures of truth and falsity and keeping us in a kind of low-level dread.”

So Senior applauded Flake for some of his anti-Trump tweets, but then something shocking happened: Flake voted with Trump 84 percent of the time, and therefore his entire book was null and void. Orange man bad, Jeff Flake bad.

Hey Sen. Flake … consider this a preview of how the media will treat you if you try to run as a centrist in 2020. It won’t go well for you. Maybe CNN will take you on as a token “conservative” panelist if you smile more, though.


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