When Mark Robinson comes onto the stage at his rallies, his theme song should be “Crossroads” because Robinson has clearly sold his soul.
Legend has it that blues musician Robert Johnson was just a mediocre guitar player who was more an annoyance than a performer. One night, he went down to a crossroads in the Mississippi Delta where he met the devil. When he came back, he could play, sing, and write music like nobody else. He sold his soul in exchange for talent that gave him fame and notoriety. Of course, Johnson died at 27, probably poisoned by a jealous husband, becoming the founding member of the 27 Club.
Mark Robinson built his career making inflammatory statements that derided and demeaned the people he considers his opponents and taking extreme stands on the most divisive social issues. He called gay people “filth.” And he wants to ban abortion for any reason. Just over two months ago, Robinson said on a radio show, “If I had all the power right now, let’s say I was the governor and had a willing legislature, we could pass a bill saying you can’t have an abortion in North Carolina for any reason.”
Yesterday, after the legislature introduced a bill banning abortions after 12 weeks, Robinson suddenly had nothing to say. When asked about the bill, he told reporters, “I’m not interested in talking about abortion anymore.” Just like that, he’s over it. After years of comparing abortion to murder and telling us what he would do as governor, he’s done talking about it.
That’s what you call being handled. He’s not himself anymore. He’s become just another politician, doing whatever it takes to get elected. Just like Robert Johnson, he’s sold his soul. At least Johnson sold out to the devil. Robinson sold his to the consultants who are remaking him in the image of a generic politician, saying what’s right to appeal to the broadest audience. Good luck.
You may be asking if Tricia Cotham sold her soul, too. After a life time of staunchly defending abortion rights and calling on the legislature to codify Roe just last year, she voted for the 12 week ban. But Tricia didn’t sell her soul because she doesn’t have one to sell. She didn’t believe in abortion rights any more than she believes in the bill she just voted for. She doesn’t believe in the voucher scheme that’s gaining her applause in Republican circles any more than she believed in the public schools she once supported. Tricia doesn’t believe in anything but the applause.
Normal people would be embarrassed at the dramatic flip-flop, but Tricia’s not normal. She threw away everything she told us she believed in for the cheers of Republicans who would be nice to her. She should be right at home in the party that knows no shame and is no longer embarrassed by anything.
The GOP inadvertently reminded us of Cotham’s pathetically thin-skin and her lack of veracity when they referenced her in a tweet. The party’s official Twitter account accused Roy Cooper of “bullying and intimidation” for calling on people to put pressure on legislators who pledged to protect abortion rights and then voted to restrict them. The account asked “Sound familiar, @triciacotham?” What a bunch of snowflakes.
Mark Robinson and Tricia Cotham are two peas in a pod. They’ll say anything for applause. The difference is that Robinson is trying move up while Cotham has probably reached her apogee. They’ll trade everything, their dignity, their beliefs, their honor, for a little attention and power. How pathetic.
“Went down to the crossroads, fell down on my knees.”