WASHINGTON — Not so long ago, a powerful Republican congressman gave a revealing, behind-the-curtain glimpse at how the modern-day Republican Party had drifted away from reality. The Republican said the biggest change he’d witnessed in his time in Congress was the growth of pseudo-media outlets and hyper-partisan outside groups that polluted the political discourse with misleading, if not false, information. The effect of this, he said, was alarming:

“I used to spend ninety percent of my constituent response time on people who call, email, or send a letter, such as, ‘I really like this bill, H.R. 123,’ and they really believe in it because they heard about it through one of the groups that they belong to, but their view was based on

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