I have been slow to post these thoughts because many of my fellow Idahoans and many of my coreligionists will take offense, but I have never let controversy get in the way before, so here goes.

Richard Stallings

Richard Stallings

President Trump is the most controversial man to ever occupy the White House. Many admire the way he bullies women, minorities, the handicapped and others who dare to criticize him. Others love the way he attacks immigrants. They believe our nation has too many strange-looking people already, and we should close our borders. Still others admire his way of dealing with our allies and agree with his assessment that they are getting a free ride. While all of these issues are hotly debated, there is one practice Mr. Trump has engaged in that all should find discomforting; his complete and total disregard of the truth.

While all Presidents have probably distorted the truth or outright lied, none have come close to the level Donald Trump has achieved. In fact, Mr. Trump has told more lies than all of our former presidents combined. According to several sources, Trump told more than 30,000 lies during his four years in office. I would think that this should give even his most dedicated follower heartburn. And now his latest falsehood is that he won the 2020 election. He didn’t, according to his Justice Department, his pollsters, his judges and several Republican Secretaries of State.

Lying is totally contrary to all we Americans hold dear. It violates the Ninth Commandment as well as the teachings of Jesus. It makes free and open debate impossible, and undermines public trust. When our founding fathers drafted our Constitution they based it on the principle that all engaged would be truthful and for more than two hundred years our Democracy, based on truth, has thrived. Until today! Trump’s lies about the election and the Republican party’s grasping on to those lies has created an environment where future elections will be questioned. I’m 80 years old and won’t live to see our nation’s ruin, but I weep for our political system and dread the authoritarian system the GOP has in store for America.

A few years ago Tom Brokow identified the generation born in the 1920s as the “greatest generation” because of their successes in World War II and their untiring efforts to rebuild our war-weary nation. What label will the Republicans, who are in the process of destroying, our Constitutional system be given?

Richard Stallings is the former U.S. representative for Idaho’s Second Congressional District.

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