John Klar and Phil Scott, two peas in a pod.
Scott, so respected as a man of principle, has thrown his principles out the window as he desperately seeks to block the Democrats from winning veto-proof majorities.
Klar is on a lower perch with less at stake, but this is a stunning self-abasement for him as well, He claims to operate on nothing but his own curious set of principles. But after years of railing against the Quisling of moderation, even seeking to challenge Scott in the 2020 primary, Klar is happy to get into bed with the governor to win a seat in the state Senate.
This picture does, after all, constitute a mutual endorsement.
(By the way, love the shoutout to Lenore Broughton’s doomed political action committee in the headline.)
Make no mistake. Scott will claim that he gets photographed with all kinds of people all the time and it doesn’t mean he support them, but you can bet a shiny new Anna May Wong quarter that Klar would have had to get permission from Team Scott to use this photo in a campaign ad. The caption doesn’t say “I Endorse John Klar [signed] Phil Scott,” but it might as well have.
Scott would rather have this obnoxious extremist in the Senate than Mark MacDonald, who may be a liberal but he’s also a veteran lawmaker who knows the process and respects the process. Klar would take to the hallowed halls with a rhetorical flamethrower. The governor no longer finds that objectionable.
Let’s tot up the stuff that the governor is willing to endorse just to protect his veto power.
Climate change denial? Check.
Killing reproductive rights? Check.
Barely-veiled racism? Check.
Extreme, hate-filled political rhetoric? Check.
Election fraud lies? Check.
Vermont-centric xenophobia? Check.
The list goes on. John Klar is antithetical to the open-minded moderation that is supposedly Phil Scott’s calling card, the very thing that prompts so many Democrats to split their ticket.
The governor criticizes “politics as usual” every chance he gets. He assigns political motives to the Democratic Legislature, maintaining that he is above all of that.
If he ever was, he isn’t anymore.