What is the Republican Party?

As unfoxed Americans see Trump is a glob of pus larger than Uranus, and the Republican party careens toward massive defeat, some members now say, “I told you so.” Or, rather, “I should have told you so.” Or at least a few say it.

A number of anti-Trump Republican groups are indeed coming to the fore, including legions of officials from past Republican administrations, when sanity still reigned. Some even say that every GOP senator who voted against impeachment should be unseated. If that means complete Democrat control of the government, so be it — the Republican party must be burned to the ground and rebuilt.

Where were these people all this time? But I feel their pain. I experienced it myself after 53 years as a Republican. However, my answer was simpler: leaving.

My Republican party was for limited government, fiscal responsibility, personal responsibility, free trade, and strong global engagement opposing enemies of freedom, especially Russia. It actually believed in morality. And it was for black emancipation that that Republican party had literally been born. Now it is dead.

What, after all, is a political party? It’s not some static institution like, say, the Catholic Church. It’s people organizing together for certain political objectives. That’s always changeable. Those calling themselves Republican today do not promote the objectives cited above, but undermine them, actually pursuing an entirely different agenda. Mainly white nationalism. With this I could no longer associate myself.

There’s been much analysis of Trumpist politics, and yes, it’s a phenomenon way more complex than just those two words. For some evangelicals, abortion is key; for others, it’s guns. But everything else is window dressing. Fox News and the whole right-wing universe have worked mightily dressing up that window, creating an alternate reality, putting a halo on a scumbag and vaunting a record of supposed achievement that’s in fact horrible. They still call this “conservative.” Useful cover for people who don’t want to think they’re racist. But strip away all that camouflage and misdirection — and by now the sheer unavoidably obvious reality has stripped much of it away — and what’s left is mainly people continuing to back Trump because they see him as standing for whites against all those “others.”

This is what today’s Republican party is. It’s indeed the core theme of Trump’s re-election campaign. “Conservative” my ass. It’s no coincidence that probably a majority of the states Trump carries in November will be ones that seceded in 1861. Where for decades already a majority of whites have been Republicans because they don’t want to associate themselves with blacks who are mostly Democrats. More sociology than politics.

And more proof: normally a president responsible for some huge disaster would be toast. Trump owns the double catastrophe of raging coronavirus and economic melt-down. Plus his disgusting behavior regarding the BLM movement. Overwhelming majorities disapprove. So how does this guy still have any support at all? A big part of it is white bitter-enders, for whom nothing else matters.

But even that may actually be too rational an explanation. This is really a cult, with all the irrationality that implies. It might be explicable, sort of, if it centered on some really charismatic and inspirational leader. Instead it’s a vile creep. Evil does have a strange counter-intuitive attraction. There’s also a macho masculinity thing going on. And for Trump cultists this loyalty is part of their personal identity, so anything against it they take personally.*

The Republican voting base had long been tending toward know-nothing nativism. Party leaders tried to exploit this while at the same time keeping a lid on it. Then came Trump not only exploiting it but celebrating it. And the party’s responsible center just collapsed. No longer able to beat back the yahoos, formerly sane Republicans stampeded to join them.

Those anti-Trump Republicans I mentioned see themselves as battling for their party’s heart and soul. If only there were any left to fight for. But that horse left the barn when 99% of congressional Republicans voted against impeachment. In fact, there’s never in U.S. history been a party as united as today’s Republican Trump cult. Its 2024 presidential nominee will be Donald Trump — Senior or Junior. What’s to prevent that?

Yes, the party should be burned down, but rebuilding it into something better is a fairy tale. That imagined new reformed Republican party could meet in a closet.

Nobody still associated with the old one should ever be elected to anything again. That will likely pan out, to a considerable extent. Demography is against Republicans as older bigots die off, replaced by less religious voters with more open attitudes, while the electorate becomes less white every day. Trump thinking he’ll ride to victory waving the Confederate flag is political insanity. He’s indelibly stamped the party with this stain.

He also hopes to win by flooding the zone with lies. And preposterous scaremongering that radical Democrats will somehow destroy suburbs. And by blocking as many citizens as possible from voting. Republicans stole Georgia’s governorship that way in 2018. But Trump is so far down, his usual game plan of lying and cheating can’t save him.

Remember too that 2020 is a census year, with decennial redistricting ahead. Despite Republican efforts to game the census, a big Democratic tide in November will still give that party much more control over gerrymandering than it had last time, when Republicans dominated (2010 was a big year for them). This will disempower Republicans even more, going forward.

We’ve long had a two-party system. Looks like it will become more like a one-and-a-half-party system. That’s not good; could make reigning Democrats complacent, arrogant, and unresponsive. We need a new second party, but given our electoral system it’s hard to see how one could emerge as long as a zombie Republican party continues to stagger onward.

* I’ve also written often about the moral arrogance of the left’s intolerance for divergent viewpoints.

3 Responses to “What is the Republican Party?”

  1. Vloerverwarming Warmtepomp Says:

    Vloerverwarming Warmtepomp

    What is the Republican Party? | The Rational Optimist

  2. Www.Dealsclassified.online Says:


    What is the Republican Party? | The Rational Optimist

  3. Sports Betting sites Says:

    Sports Betting sites

    What is the Republican Party? | The Rational Optimist

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: