Tuesday, June 7, 2016

To be or not to be: Republicans will either abandon Trump or see the country abandon the GOP

"The sad reality is that we knew this would happen. It doesn’t take a prophet or an extraordinarily gifted prognosticator to see the GOP arriving at this exact point. So I can’t take any credit or derive any joy from saying “I told you so.”" ~ Steve Berman, Trump Is Exactly What We Thought He Was
There will be a choice to make this election cycle. Unfortunately, the biggest one right now is not between Hillary or Trump. It has to do solely with the latter and how his nomination affects a political party...
TheResurgent: The Republican Party is on the verge of being set back a generation because of its Presidential nominee. If Republican Party officials do not man up and publicly repudiate their nominee, the voters will repudiate the GOP as the voters did in 2006. This time, however, it will be far more costly with far more long term damage. Thus far Lindsey Graham is the only major Republican to walk back his pledge of support for Trump, but his views reflect those of several dozen Republican governors, senators, and congressmen too chicken to speak out.

The Republican Party leadership is, like so often before, so focused on not angering anyone that everyone is angry with them. Right now, though, what is most shocking and demoralizing is that party leaders actually know the right thing to do and will not do it. They know Donald Trump’s attacks on Judge Curiel are way over the line. They know Donald Trump’s willingness to double down on war crimes is way over the line. They know Donald Trump’s support of a minimum wage increase and protectionist policies are economic disasters waiting to happen. His campaign has taken to threatening individuals including the wife of David French.

But what’s more, Republican Party officials privately are already conceding that with Donald Trump the party does face annihilation. Only Lindsey Graham is willing to say it publicly, but others in the upper levels of the party know it too.

Those Republicans who did think they could control Trump or that Trump would tone down his rhetoric also now realize they were delusional. Trump just yesterday threw his staff under the bus, telling his campaign surrogates that his own staff was stupid. This is the man who brags about the people he hires and he is calling them stupid.

What’s more, Trump’s top surrogates are beginning to leak in an effort to undermine his campaign. The significant details of this conference call leaking to reporters has not gone unnoticed. Trump’s campaign is also whispering on background that there really is no campaign. He has no data operation, little staff, and the wheels are starting to fall off before the Democrats even begin their $20 million blitz in the month of June.
And with the media tying a bow around the primary season, getting their Trump vs. Hillary face-off so desired, the political ground war has already commenced...

TheResurgent: And it is only going to go downhill from there.

It’s going to focus on Trump having affairs, Trump defrauding people, Trump keeping black people from renting properties, Trump not hiring veterans, Trump not disclosing his taxes, Trump’s attacks on Judge Curiel, and so much more.

Trump’s words will be used against him over and over in brutal fashion.

I warned you guys. But you decided you wanted Trump as the nominee. Now just watch.

And certainly more to come...so will the party still go along or cease to be?
The information regarding Trump University is awful and only going to get worse. The information regarding Trump’s former relationships and allegations of abortions is going to come out and suppress evangelical voters. The information regarding the Trump family’s rentals to black families is going to weigh him down. The information regarding Trump’s treatment of veterans is going to hurt him with that constituency. Trump’s taxes will haunt him too as will his lack of charitable contributions.

That’s only the beginning. It is going to be brutal. But consider this fact: we have not even gotten to those attacks yet and we already have enough information to disqualify Trump.

He is urging surrogates to attack reporters as racist at a time he is making racist attacks on a judge to try to undermine a fraud case. That fraud case already shows Trump employees will testify against Trump. Military and intelligence officials are already publicly worried about giving Trump classified information and Trump still insists he would have our military commit war crimes.

At some point, the good of the country demands Republican leaders exercise leadership against Trump. To hell with what a plurality of mostly non-Republican voters demanded in the Republican Party. The Republican Party’s long term survival is at stake and, frankly, the good of the country far outweighs demands of loyalty to a racist.

Lindsey Graham is a public voice who reflects the private sentiment of several dozen Republican governors, senators, and congressmen. It is time for them to speak out too. The GOP needs an intervention. It will either abandon Trump or see the nation abandon it for a generation.
If Republicans refuse to abandon Trump, will we witness the GOP going the way of the Whigs? It's quite possible...
"It was summer, and a major U.S. political party had just chosen an inexperienced, unqualified, loutish, wealthy outsider with ambiguous party loyalties to be its presidential nominee. Some party luminaries thought he would help them win the general election. But many of the faithful were furious and mystified: How could their party compromise its ideals to such a degree? Sound like 2016? This happened a century and a half ago." ~ Gil Troy
RedState: Last week, Dr. Gil Troy, a professor of history at McGill University, had an interesting story in POLITICO in which he compares Donald Trump to Zachary Taylor and indirectly wonders if Trump will do to the GOP what the election of 1848 did to the Whigs. I can’t do the article justice without provoking copyright attorneys from their slumber, you need to read the whole thing.

Historical comparisons are always inexact, RedStater Dan McLaughlin writing at National Review points this out, and similar facts don’t always produce the same outcomes but this one bears thinking about. (Taylor’s term of office ended in death after 127 days, something to consider. Just sayin’)

The GOP has been experiencing internal tensions between wings that are, on the one hand, essentially indistinguishable from Democrats in political philosophy and, on the other, supporters of a vision of a much smaller and less intrusive federal government. These tensions came to the fore in 2010 when a Democrat controlled House was flipped despite all predictions. In retrospect, it seems clear that there was a third, silent plurality in the GOP, the populist descendants of Anderw Jackson, William Jennings Bryant, Teddy Roosevelt, Bob LaFollette, Huey Long, and George Wallace.

In 2010, the mainstream of the GOP showed that it was willing to accept political opponents into its ranks for the sake of winning. Conservatives, it seems, assumed that the populist strain that gave them victories in 2010 and 2014 was actually a conservative movement.

While the GOP did not seek out Trump as a candidate this year, there is no doubt that the mainstream of the party started moving in his direction before the first caucus. In early January, it became obvious that Trump was the establishment candidate in Iowa. By mid-January it was clear that the GOP elites viewed Trump as a man who could win and with whom they could do business. A conscious decision was made that it was easier to jettison their values for a man who believed in nothing than support several men who actually believed in something.

Trump is bringing with him a background and political philosophy, to the extent that he can be said to have one, is anathema to everything the GOP has claimed to represent since the Reagan Administration… or maybe the Hoover Administration. The fault lines on isolationism, the role of alliances, crony capitalism, free trade, welfare, the role of the presidency, education, race relations and abortion are all plainly visible. If Trump loses, the GOP can sort these differences out for 2020. If Trump wins, actions by a Trump Administration will exacerbate those fault lines nearly guaranteeing a bitter primary fight should Trump decide to run again.

Maybe this is the curtain call for the GOP. I, for one, certain will shed no tears. I’ve put up with abject losers like Bob Dole and John McCain and the ugly spectacle of Failure Theater for longer than any sane person should. I don’t know what comes next but if anything has the ability to destroy the GOP it is a Trump victory.
Whatever the outcome, this century's descent is clear, from Dubya to McCain to Romney to Trump. This is a party in dire straits, regardless of a win or a loss.

If I Lose Friends Over Trump, So Be It

No comments:

Post a Comment