Back in the old days when the whole town got excited about the carnival coming to the county fairgrounds, folks flocked to see the Funhouse Mirrors because it made them laugh to see reality so grotesquely distorted and absurdly confused. That’s the image that comes to mind after learning that AL Congressman Mo Brooks decided to join other Donald Trump sycophant/ political cultists in challenging the results of the 2020 Election without a shred of evidence to support their clearly bogus claims of widespread voter fraud or some outlandish deep-state scheme to “steal” the election for Biden.
Regrettably, we’re used to Mo Brooks’ carnival barking in Alabama, but for the rest of the nation- Welcome to the Mo Brooks Funhouse!
For decades, Brooks has been a political huckster who has mastered the art of garnering free media attention by making ridiculous “controversial” statements designed to enflame the worst elements of his radically conservative base. His legislative record is mostly an abysmal array of failed support for regressive and misguided policies that serve to divide and constrain, rather than unite and uplift. Other than that, he joins other hyper-partisan Republicans as obstructionists to demonstrate to their rabid constituency that they are “fighting” against amorphous heathen liberal boogeymen seeking to destroy ‘Merica.
In Mo’s Funhouse you can see things like: His opposition to illegal and legal immigration featuring a garish prismatic display of racism varying in clarity and intensity; His indecipherable rhetorical fog machine describing his half-baked, end-of-days economic prophecies; His genius theory that rocks falling in the ocean are the real culprit for rising sea levels, and, well, many more jaw-droppingly ignorant views too numerous to mention during his, um, illustrious four decades in politics. Ah, there’s nothing like a blowhard, do-nothing career politicians like Mo Brooks railing against career politicians and The Evil Washington Swamp!
Now, Mo has just unveiled his zaniest and most distorted mirror yet by leading a Don Quixote charge to overturn a fair and legal election without any significant or substantial evidence to back up Trump’s claims of widespread voter fraud, ballot shredding, or other 4Chan-type conspiracy rubbish.
Joe Biden won the election fair and square and will be our next President.
Tragically, Mo Brooks will continue spewing his outrageous comments and extreme views because Alabama Republicans swallowed Trump’s alt-reality red-meat bait long ago- hook, line, and sinker. The truth is that Brooks glories in media attention. Brooks branded himself as “controversial” and a “fighter” against the establishment because he knows it rallies his ill-informed base and, more importantly, his self-interested campaign donors. A quick glance at his history shows that Brooks has done little in Congress except regularly embarrass Alabama on a national stage.
He deserves much more than scorn and censure. It’s truly time for Mo to go.
Brooks’ efforts to overturn the election should have voters shouting in the streets for his removal. Alabama Democrats should be working day and night to find the right candidate and campaign team to ensure Brooks’ defeat. Given a powerful and charismatic candidate, there are a ton of folks that would cross party lines to vote Brooks out because he’s done such an excruciatingly pathetic job representing Alabama’s vibrant and extremely diverse 5th Congressional District. Seriously, take a moment, look at his record, look at his public statements and antics, and make your own judgment.
Just as America grew quickly disgusted and tired of Trump’s boorish reality-TV show version of the White House, Alabama is equally nauseated and weary of Mo’s Funhouse approach to politics.
Brooks’ delusions are now dangerous as he desperately seeks to overturn an election that has been legally certified and finalized. His words and actions are a threat to our democracy and the integrity of our election processes and oversight.
Mo’s Funhouse isn’t funny or fun anymore. It never really was and it just leaves you feeling sick.
Clete Wetli is former Chair of the Madison County Democrats and a liberal political activist.