Today In Republican Detachment Disorder: Michael Gerson

In which former George W. Bush chief speechwriter, senior Republican policy adviser and reliable Beltway Republican stalactite, Michael Gerson, demonstrates yet again that it is virtually impossible for a Republican to look Republican evil in the eye and call it by its true name.
The cowardice among Republicans is staggering
You say "staggering".  I say "utterly predictable". 

But do go on.
According to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, the declassified Devin Nunes memo — alleging FBI misconduct in the Russia investigation — is “not an indictment of the FBI, of the Department of Justice.” According to President Trump, the memo shows how leaders at the FBI “politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats” and “totally vindicates ‘Trump’ in probe.”

Both men are deluded or deceptive...
No,  both men are evil.  They are both liars and they are both evil.
The existence of reckless partisans such as Nunes is hardly surprising. The nearly uniform cowardice among elected Republicans is staggering. 
No,  we've discussed this.  You can't say the performance of something is "staggering" when you have spent your entire adult life working to ensure that it will perform exactly as it is performing.  You stocked your GOP with bigots and imbeciles, con men and lunatics, gun nuts and oligarchs, fake Christians and real fascists.  You did it strategically, methodically, over the course of decades. 

How the fuck did you expect they would act like when their Il Douche finally arrived?
And what to make of Ryan (R-Wis.)? 
That he is an evil man.
I have been a consistent defender of his good intentions. 
Because you are an idiot and a terrible person.
But after the 17th time saying “He knows better,” it dawns that he may not. 
Because, as I just said, you are an idiot and a terrible person.
By his recent actions, the speaker has provided political cover for a weakening of the constitutional order. He has been used as a tool while loudly insisting he is not a tool. The way Ryan is headed, history offers two possible verdicts: Either he enabled an autocrat, or he was intimidated by a fool. 
No. There is a third verdict.  That he was an evil man, leading a party of monsters.
I believe Ryan to be a good person. 
But you believe because you must, not because it is true.  You believe it because to believe otherwise would mean that you are an idiot and a terrible person who has spent his adult life enabling a party of monsters. 
But the greatest source of cynicism is not the existence of corrupt people in politics; it is good people who lose their way.
Paul Ryan was never a good person who lost his way.  He is an evil man who found a hospitable ecosystem in which his evil could thrive in your party of monsters.
Why can’t Republican legislators see the personal damage this might cause? 
Because they are a party of monsters, led by evil men.
A generation of Republicans will end up writing memoirs of apology and regret.
No, they won't.  Y'all will just do what you did the last time your party of monsters collapsed under the weight of your own corruption and perfidy.  Republicans and their quisling enablers in the media will spend a shit-ton of money gassing up the Bush Off Machine and then taking it out for a  nationwide propaganda blitz.  Almost overnight millions of Trump-loving MAGA Republicans will disappear and be replaced with "Independents" who never even heard of Donald Trump.
But it is damage to the conscience that is hardest to repair. 
But Republicans don't have a conscience. 

They have a Hannity.

Behold, a Tip Jar!