Partisan infighting drama shows the US has degraded into a 'banana republic'
Published: Aug 11, 2022 10:53 PM
US partisan conflicts escalate as both parties target the 2024 presidential election. Cartoon: Vitaly Podvitski

US partisan conflicts escalate as both parties target the 2024 presidential election. Cartoon: Vitaly Podvitski

The US is presenting the world a partisan infighting drama. After the FBI searched former US president Donald Trump's home at Mar-a-Lago in Florida, Trump on Wednesday invoked his Fifth Amendment right in refusing to answer questions under oath in New York over alleged fraud at his family business. 

There have been many controversies and allegations about Trump. However, the timing of the FBI and the US Department of Justice's (DOJ) actions indeed cause suspicion. The midterm elections are less than three months away, which makes external observers on US affairs easily speculate that the investigation into Trump and the raid of his home are really aimed at influencing the outcome of the midterm elections, discrediting Trump and hindering him from running in the 2024 presidential election, Chinese analysts noted. 

The FBI search led to fierce bickering between Democrats and Republicans. Democrats defended it as a long-overdue step toward justice and proof that no one - even a former president - is above the law, while Republicans and Trump supporters accused the Democrats of weaponizing federal agencies against political opponents and vowed to probe what they alleged was political interference at the DOJ if they win the majority in Congress in November.

The political farce, like a soap opera, is far from over. When Trump tried to turn the FBI's raid to his benefit, citing the investigation in fundraising emails soliciting political donations from his supporters, he added extra comedy color to this drama. 

Analysts believe that the search on Trump's home will open Pandora's box - the Democrats will be revenged in the same way after they step down and the US partisan battle is losing its bottom line. "This is possible. There will be a more vicious competition such as hunting down opponents through judicial means," said Xin Qiang, deputy director of the Center for American Studies at Fudan University. He noted that this will lead to further division in politics or even society. "It cannot be ruled out that some other US presidents may also face constant lawsuits after stepping down in the future," Xin told the Global Times. 

This isn't the political ecology that a healthy power is supposed to have. In fact, the US has degraded into a "banana republic." The search on Trump's home further steps on the accelerator of US political degeneration and decline.

The US itself is sick. Although it's still a major power with a strong economy, military and a domineering diplomacy, it has serious political, economic, social and legal problems. The intensifying political division and partisan battle have led to a major crisis in the US at all levels.

The art and core of democracy is compromise, but the situation in the US is a fierce struggle - If I cannot engineer your downfall, then it is me who's going to jail. Is this still democracy? US politics has not followed the path of benign partisan democracy of compromise, but is heading toward the opposite direction - toward a populist and authoritarian direction with deeper partisan divisions, opposition and polarization.

The foundation of the US empire is loosening, and it has been shaken by American politicians themselves. Trump insisted that "Such an assault could only take place in broken, third-World countries. Sadly, America has now become one of those countries, corrupt at a level not seen before." But it is these unscrupulous politicians, who live on partisan struggle, that make the US degenerate. 

The US has completely destroyed its image as described by the political elites. When there is no partisan mutual trust left, how can the rest of the world still believe the US?

"With more of such farces of partisan struggle emerging in the future, the US will have more serious domestic political problems, which will naturally change other countries' views on the party politics of the US. They will at least raise more questions and reflect on the so-called Veto Politics and its negative influence upon national governance capability of the US. This is inevitable," Xin said.