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Bulwark's Charlie Sykes calls out Charles C.W. Cooke for being an insufficiently Principled Conservative™

In case you missed it, yesterday, former President Donald Trump issued a statement claiming that when said that the fact that he lost the 2020 election meant that the U.S. Constitution could be gutted in order to reinstate him as president, he didn’t actually say that thing he said:


He’s completely full of it, of course.

By now, hopefully you, too, are tired of Donald Trump being stupid. No matter how awful and loathsome you find President Joe Biden, Donald Trump is awful and loathsome, too, and his comments about suspending the Constitution should be the last of all the final straws that broke the camel’s back.

National Review’s Charles C.W. Cooke effectively made that argument in a post he wrote yesterday:

Here’s how Cooke’s post concludes:

Why does this happen? Beats me. At this stage, literally nothing is being achieved by it — except, of course, to drive independents and mainstream Republicans from the coalition. No laws are changed. No judges are appointed. No arguments are won. No thorny topics are broached. America doesn’t improve. Conservatism doesn’t improve. The GOP doesn’t improve. Everything just gets dumber and more cultish. As there should be, there is a limited supply of political energy in this country, and for some reason, the American Right has decided to spend an inordinate amount of it defending a man who is now serving nothing except for his own boredom and his own ego. At some point, conservative-leaning voters are going to notice that all Trump cares about now is the pretense that he won the election of 2020, and that, in order to push that idea, he will happily destroy anything and everything that gets in his way. Until then, I must ask: Are you not tired of this crap?


In case it’s not abundantly clear, Charles C.W. Cooke is tired of this crap. He’s been tired of Donald Trump’s crap for years. But he also hasn’t let the fact that he’s been tired of Donald Trump’s crap for years prevent him from acknowledging positive things that happened while Trump was president or from acknowledging when liberals and Resistance conservatives’ criticisms of Trump were baseless or unreasonable.

And that, in eyes of The Bulwark’s Charlie Sykes, makes Cooke unclean, and unworthy of respect:

Charlie Sykes is here to administer the purity tests, everybody. Amazing how he still has time to do that in between doing Bulwark things and being an MSNBC contributor. He is supported, of course, by his Bulwark colleague Bill Kristol, who is apparently very fond of this line from Sykes’ “Morning Shots” newsletter:


Anyway, we know exactly where Cooke was. We know where Sykes was, too: he was claiming to be a Principled Conservative™ who opposed Trump in the name of Principled Conservatism™.

Cooke hasn’t wavered in his convictions; Sykes et al. have demonstrated that they have no convictions.

That’s it in a nutshell.

Did Noam Blum have the Principled Conservatives™ pegged or what?



Charlie Sykes is really depending on Donald Trump to distract from the fact that The Bulwark backed the wrong guy

Tom Nichols celebrates himself — and some very heroic friends — for coming to terms with what it means to be ‘conservative’ these days


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