State's election is about Trump, not Malloy

I'm already tired of Connecticut Republicans this election season, batting away questions about Donald Trump with retorts about the failings of Dannel Malloy.

I know a lot Democrats who will be as glad as Republicans to see Malloy go. And make no mistake, he's going. He's not on the ballot, already a part of Connecticut's political history. Forget about him.

Let's talk about what's really at stake. What is to be decided in this election, around the country and here in Connecticut, is much more important than Connecticut's fiscal crisis or the various strategies from the left and right proposed for resolving it.

President Trump has highjacked the Republican Party and is putting at grave risk the very core values and institutions that has made this country great.

Taking young children away from their families and holding them hostage, bargaining chips to score a political win, is evil and, for any sane Republican or Democrat, entirely indefensible. Confining them in secret holding cells, without allowing the public to see what's going on, is continuing and alarming.

It's clear the trauma inflicted on these children by the president is going to do lasting harm. More disturbing, it's not clear this inept and corrupt government has the means to ever be able to reunite all of them with their parents, even if they found the will to. Many newscasters can't help but shed tears as they explain this, a haunting new development I've never seen before in television news, through decades of Republican and Democratic administrations.

This is not an America any one of us should want to be a part of.

President Trump has surrounded himself with the self-dealing and corrupt, no more than common grifters who are more interested in using their offices and access to make money than to help the country. The money collected by the president's personal lawyer from companies and people with business before the government became a virtual slush fund for payoffs. Cabinet secretaries and Trump's own family are piggishly enriching themselves.

The attorney general of New York says the Trump charitable foundation was used for personal and political gain. How much more despicable can you get?

President Trump has been spitting on our closest allies and cozying up to the world's autocrats and despots.

Most frightening, Trump foreign policy, undoing our strategic alliances in North America and Europe, would probably be exactly the foreign policy of Vladimir Putin, were he in the Oval Office.

Indeed, he probably is. We won't have final proof, although we have lots of evidence, until special counsel Robert Mueller finishes his investigation.

No wonder that highest on Trump's agenda are his efforts to undermine Mueller, by attacking the institutions of law enforcement and justice that have kept our country safe for generations. This, too, must please Putin.

The guilty pleas of two top-ranking Trump associates, one jailed without bond, is certainly evidence enough that the investigation needs to continue. The special counsel also has laid out extensive evidence in indictments that Russia meddled in our election with the intent of electing Trump.

Like a petty criminal, Trump is attacking police and prosecutors, a bedrock of the country. It's not the behavior of an innocent, someone who can count on a jury of peers or an appropriate forum to exonerate.

As president, he works to divide and not to unite, for his own greedy and heartless ends.

Here in Connecticut, we have elected a delegation to Washington willing to stand up to Trump when Republicans there turn the other way. But we can't let Connecticut Republicans running for office get away with not addressing the rot at the head of their party.

I care, too, about the cronyism by Connecticut Democrats in Hartford, with their sweet-dealing appointments and judgeships. I'd like to use my vote to rid the government of leadership by and for the benefit of municipal unions.

But the 2018 elections certainly will be among the most important many of us Americans have ever voted in. Connecticut residents, in a state that isn't going to send Republicans to Washington anyway, need to make sure that anyone we vote for here vows to clean up their party.

I can't vote for any Republican who won't renounce Trump.

I believe those who vote for or defend Trump are entirely complicit in his divisiveness and ugly racism and enabling the greedy use of American institutions for corrupt ends.

The election is in full swing here. The microphones are on ladies and gentlemen running for office on a Republican ticket.

We know what you think of Dannel Malloy. Tell us what you think of your president.

This is the opinion of David Collins.

d.collins@theday.com

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