"Stay away from personal attacks. Stop attacking the media. End the attack on Fauci and focus on problems," Sen. Thune told CNN. Gee, this review could have been useful months if not years earlier. But they were nowhere to be found when Senate Republicans dodged reporters and spent more time claiming they didn't see the news of Trump's recent atrocity when they actually passed legislation.
But if you want to get a glimpse of what really goes on when Republicans are fighting for their political lives, it's Trump's terrible handling of the coronavirus. Not only did Trump downplay the lethality of the pandemic from the start, he actually went to war against the scientists in his own administration, and got Dr. Fauci last attacked as a "disaster" – nothing less than an election campaign call.
North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis, who recently tested positive for coronavirus and is now just a few points behind his Democratic rival Cal Cunningham, took Fauci's side in the debate.
"I have a lot of faith in Dr. Fauci," said Tillis.
Montana GOP Senator Steve Daines, who usually holds back and also faces a tough challenge from Democrat Steve Bullock, wired his support for Fauci without mentioning him or Trump. "We're seeing huge peaks in Montana right now," Daines said when asked about Trump's broadside on Fauci. "We need to focus now on stopping this pandemic."
Even the always submissive South Carolina GOP Senator Lindsey Graham sided with Fauci, saying, "I think I trust his judgment on Dr. Fauci."
Oh, and Texas Senator John Cornyn suddenly found his voice and told the editorial staff of a local Texas newspaper that he had spoken out against many of Trump's positions, but behind closed doors where no one could see them – privately, he says .
That did a lot of good. Has anyone noticed that Trump made this linchpin for a competent, ethical, and law abiding official? No
And that's exactly because of episodes like this one being told on CNN.
After Trump's rocky appearance at the presidential debate last month, Cornyn spoke to two reporters on a range of topics. However, when Cornyn was asked about Trump's refusal in the debate to reject white supremacists, he abruptly cut the back and forth.
"I'm done. See you later," Cornyn said as he walked through the halls of the Russell Senate Office Building.
What a brave profile.