Project 2025: Dystopia Wrapped in a Flag Carrying a Bible

The Handmaid's Tail: a costume for star Elisabeth Moss's cat

Note, “Bubby”  or “Brother of Claw” teamed up with me on this post.

For years, decades really, both major political parties have relied on the term, “Big Tent” to refer to a willingness to welcome a broader cross-section of the electorate into their camps.  For the Democrats, this is largely an exercise that has been true to the term.  We are the most diverse political party in the country, if not the world.  For Republicans, “Big Tent” is a marketing tool, a trope, for time after time they have shown a willingness not just to shut the door, but eject their own.

Three Republican state senators in South Carolina who filibustered an abortion ban in the state have lost in their primary elections this month.

Katrina ShealySandy Senn and Penry Gustafson lost to three male candidates and were among a bipartisan group of five women state senators who filibustered a near-total abortion ban. They were nicknamed the “sister senators.”  As a result of their coordinated effort, the group was chosen last year to receive the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award.
“During the filibuster, each of the five lawmakers took turns describing the complexities of pregnancy and the reproductive system, the dangers of lack of access to contraception, and inadequate privacy laws,” said the announcement about them receiving the award. “In the immediate aftermath of their filibuster, the Sister Senators were heckled and harassed by anti-abortion activists. The three Republicans were also met with strong opposition from their own party — including censures and promises of primary challenges in 2024.”

This is a weird hill to politically stage a battle on.  While the Republicans continue to consolidate support from the furthest fringes of the right, they are shrinking in the middle faster than Jillian Michaels on a new cleanse.  The polls continue to shift against them, but they keep doing it.  To say it is anything other than bizarre would be an understatement.  They don’t have the political capital or support to execute any kind of Handsmaidian Tale plan, short of Trump installing himself as a dictator.

But what if that is their plan?

Introducing Project 2025.

From Senator Patty Murray’s (D-WA) release:

“There are no two ways about it: Republicans intend to ban abortion nationwide. They have made their plan public for all the world to see with Project 2025, the radical and detailed agenda that a far-right alliance is preparing to implement under a second Trump administration,” said Senator Murray. “This plan by Donald Trump and his allies includes reversing FDA approval of mifepristone, attacking access to contraception, implementing a new regime of invasive abortion data tracking, and trying to misuse the 1873 Comstock Act—which the Department of Justice has repeatedly made clear does not apply—as a backdoor way to ban abortion nationwide by criminally prosecuting people for mailing medication abortion, and potentially even the medical supplies necessary for abortion care. It’s a detailed roadmap to rip away a woman’s right to choose in every single state in America—and they don’t even need Congress to try to do it! Americans need to understand that abortion rights are on the ballot this November, in every single state.”

That is a broad outline of the misogyny element of Project 2025.  Let me share with you this nugget of nightmare:

The detailed plan to dismantle and reconstruct the government laid out by conservative groups known as the 2025 Presidential Transition Project has critics up in arms over its “apocalyptic” and “authoritarian” nature.

The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C., led an effort to create the more than 900-page “Mandate for Leadership,” published in April 2023, reimagining the executive branch and presented a plan to overhaul several federal government agencies, including the FBI, for the country’s next conservative president to follow.

According to the Project’s website, the playbook provides a governing agenda and a lineup of people ready to implement it to “rescue the country from the grip of the radical Left.” It includes a domestic and foreign policy agenda, a list of personnel, training, and a 180-day playbook. “It is not enough for conservatives to win elections,” Project 2025 said on its website. “With the right conservative policy recommendations and properly vetted and trained personnel to implement them, we will take back our government.”

I will bring much more on this growing threat in the coming weeks, but there is one particular element of this malevolence I want to drive home to you.

The chapter on the Department of Homeland Security in Project 2025’s Mandate for Leadership, written in part by Ken Cuccinelli—who notoriously served as the acting director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under President Trump—lays out a vision of an immigration enforcement agency that is even more draconian than its previous incarnation, one that will be purged of personnel who aren’t loyal to Trump and will be far less subject to oversight. Under the plan, the DHS would be dismantled, and immigration-related agencies from across the executive branch would be combined into “a stand-alone border and immigration agency” (except for the Transportation Security Administration, which would be privatized).

Oh so instead of trained professionals protecting our families’ safety on flights we would have blood-thirsty border mercenaries.  Nothing like a bad 80’s action film to base border policy on.  More to come.


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