In case you missed this absolute gem, earlier today the attorney general of the United States laughed and praised and guffawed as a group of attendees at the high school leadership council chanted, “Lock her up! Lock her up!”
And I started thinking—leadership is hard. True leadership. The type of leadership where you stare down people doing bad things and say, “No. No, no, no.” I often think back to John McCain on the 2008 campaign trail, when a supporter asked about Barack Obama being a Muslim. And the Arizona senator—a Republican, a conservative, a man fighting for the highest office—said this. It would have been easy for McCain to have either agreed with the woman. or, if nothing else, sidestepped the comment. But he didn’t. He rode with conviction.
Jeff Sessions, as far as I can tell, has little conviction. If he did, he would have leaned into the microphone and said, “No. I’m sorry, but no. Listen, I understand anger. And I support this president. But Hillary Clinton was our secretary of state. She was our First Lady. I don’t see the dignity in this chant, and I’d prefer we, as conservatives, move on and let her live her life.”
Of course, that would have taken courage.
In 2018 conservatism, I’m not sure those qualities remain.