Smart man.

Courtesy of Des Moines Register

Citing concerns about the coronavirus, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley said he will not attend this year’s Republican National Convention, marking the first time he has sat out a convention since he was elected to the U.S. Senate 40 years ago.

“I’m not going to go. And I’m not going to go because of the virus situation,” Grassley said Monday morning on a conference call with reporters.

Grassley, 86, said he has attended every RNC since he was elected to the Senate in 1980. The conventions are held every four years to nominate the party’s candidate for president. This year, President Donald Trump will accept the party’s nomination for reelection at a convention in Jacksonville, Florida, which is scheduled for Aug. 24-27.

This year’s Republican convention was moved from Charlotte, North Carolina, after Gov. Roy Cooper and Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles, both Democrats, wouldn’t commit to allowing a full convention because of health concerns.

It is almost impossible to give Republicans too much credit these days, but at least Grassley recognizes a kill jar when he sees one. 

I would not be at all surprised to hear that more Republican lawmakers are planning to give this thing a miss as well. 

I would also not be at all surprised to hear about the virus outbreak that is sure to occur days or weeks after the end of the convention. 

Trump wants no social distancing and no masks.

So essentially he wants his fellow Republicans to put their lives on the line in order to demonstrate their allegiance to him. 

I am not sure that even Hitler made such dangerous demands of his subordinates.

Update: So after I wrote this is learned that yet another GOP Senator has joined Grassly on taking a pass.

Courtesy of TPM:

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) announced that he has decided against attending the Republican National Convention next month, making him the second Republican to opt out of the event.

In a statement shared with TPM on Tuesday, Alexander’s office said that although he is an honorary chair of the Tennessee Trump campaign, he will not attend the RNC “because he believes the delegate spots should be reserved for those who have not had that privilege before as he has had.”

Alexander’s announcement as Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told reporters during a conference call Monday that he wouldn’t attend the convention due to “the virus situation,” referring to surging cases of the coronavirus across the country.

Although Alexander didn’t point to surging cases of the coronavirus across the country in his statement, last week he doubled down on his call for everyone, including President Trump, to wear a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19, during a Senate coronavirus hearing.

If this keeps up by the time they hold the convention the only folks who will show up will be Devin Nunes, Ted Cruz, and the sycophants at Fox News. 

With any luck, this might wipe out the whole lot of them. 

Update 2: Three more Senators are skipping the convention.

Courtesy of TPM:

According to the Washington Post, Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Mitt Romney (R-UT) have now joined Sens. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) in opting out of their party’s convention as coronavirus cases continue surging across the country.

And the vast GOP migration begins.