A Jan. 6th rioter was just booted out of his low-level public office by a judge in New Mexico and, well...in other news it’s Tuesday and it may or may not be raining wherever you are.
Not to minimize Santa Fe County District Court Judge Francis Mathew’s ruling in the case of Couy Griffin, a county commissioner in Otero County, N.M., who also co-founded of a group of nutjobs called Cowboys for Trump. Mathew’s decision is, legally speaking, significant if not groundbreaking. It marks the first time that an elected official has been successfully booted from office on the grounds that their participation in the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the Capitol violated the Constitution’s 14th Amendment. That’s the one that says that folks who try to overthrown the government shouldn’t be allowed to serve in it, because y’know, foxes-to-henhouses and such.
Mathew’s ruling is also the first time that a judge in any court has established that what happened that day represented an insurrection, something that could form the basis for future actions against people like Griffin. So while the case was serious business, Griffin makes it way to easy to shrug, or laugh or refresh yourself a glass of his saline tears with his outrage at the notion that he might actually be held accountable for his actions.
He told CNN that he was “shocked. Just shocked,” that a judge would actually do what the law said he should by removing Griffin from office and banning him from ever holding an elected post again. “I really did not feel like the state was going to move on me in such a way. I don’t know where I go from here.”
I’d suggest straight to jail, but Griffin has already served 14 days on a trespassing conviction due to him being part of the violent mob tried to run up on Congress and keep Donald Trump in power by stopping the certification of the the 2020 election results. At this point it doesn’t matter where he goes, as long as he doesn’t try to put his name on a ballot again.
If I empathized with the terminally privileged (I don’t), I might feel where Griffin was coming from. Here’s a man who committed his career to the service of Trump, a bigot of a president who got by by convincing his supporters they’d never have to face accountability for their violence, bigotry and hatefulness. MAGA, to people like Griffin was more an acronym for “Make Accountability Go Away” than it was for anything else, and to this day, Trump and many of his elected sycophants in Congress and state legislatures have almost entirely avoided any penalty.
Trump is still free, fighting to avoid prosecution in New York, Georgia and by the Feds, the Marjorie Taylor Greens and Josh Hawleys of the world still sit in Congress and it seems the only one who fucked around and find out the hard way was the lowly Couy Griffin, former Otero County commissioner and current convicted criminal.
Damn, these tears taste good.