The Republican Party is imploding. Right now, as you read this, the Grand Old Party, the Party of Lincoln, the Party of Reagan, is coming to its end. The Republican Party is collapsing in on itself with a roar. Thank you Donald Trump.
But is it just Donald Trump? This was the party that absorbed the Dixiecrats, the racist southern Democrats that left the party over the civil rights legislation introduced by Lyndon Johnson in the 1960s. This is the party that devised the “Southern Strategy” for winning over those Dixiecrats by appealing to their racist beliefs with coded language about race, specifically African-Americans.
This is the party that embraced Reaganomics — that still embraces Reaganomics — one of the most destructive economic ideas to ever be implemented by the United States. It all but destroyed the Middle Class and began the income redistribution from the poor and middle class to the top one percent.
This is the party that embraced the Willie Horton ad in the 1988 presidential race.
What the GOP now has is a frontrunner — who is leading by wide margins — that exposed the fallacies of Reaganomics: that it allowed companies to move their manufacturing over seas without any penalty and in many cases subsidized that transfer of jobs and income with tax breaks.
Donald Trump knows many Americans are either unemployed or underpaid, have watched their jobs leave and the resent it. They see Trump’s GOP opponents advocate for more of the same policies that have decimated the middle class — the GOP base sees Rubio, Cruz and Kasich advocated to for the policies that screwed the voters and they want none of it. Not surprisingly, they don’t see Ben Carson doing anything, other than sleep in the corner.
They want the guy who talks tough, who hasn’t got any policy positions other than “We’ll win, you’ll get sick of winning so much.” Even if he won’t disavow the support of White Supremacists like David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan.
The American electorate is comprised of low information voters, more so on the right. The less information, the better. The only reason people have tuned into the GOP debates is because Donald Trump, the experienced TV showman, has made them entertaining. The last GOP debate, sponsored by CNN and Telemundo was nothing more than a food fight with Trump on one side and Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio on the other. John Kasich and Ben Carson had to beg for time, Carson actually begging for someone to attack him so he could speak.
Now, with Donald Trump on the brink of winning the GOP’s nomination outright, with endorsements from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama — not to mention Teabagger Queen Sarah Palin — among the most notable of Trump supporters, we have other Republicans vowing not to vote for Trump or support him in any way if he does indeed become the Republican candidate for president when the GOP convention convenes in Cleveland, OH July 18.
This is the party that championed the Citizens United decision that allows unlimited amounts of money to be spent on elections. Donald Trump isn’t using outside money or SuperPACs — he’s a threat to Citizens United. Trump is the one GOP candidate who does tell it like it is: most candidates are beholding to the people who pay for their campaigns and guess what: it isn’t you little guys.
Trump has made a big deal about turning away money from his friends, he the guy who spent his life being greedy, getting all the money he could. Really, he actually calls himself greedy. Trump was turning down donations, saying no to free money. That’s how much he has sacrificed to represent the common folks that now line up behind him in the primaries.
Trump leads his GOP opponents, by as much as 20 points in some polls. Even with his gaffes about the KKK and news trickling out about the scam that was Trump University, he does not seem to be losing any support. He might actually be gaining.
When Chris Christie and Jeb Bush dropped out, none of his remaining opponents gained on him in any major way.
The only bump for Trump is Texas, where Ted Cruz leads Trump by 13 points. For Cruz to take all the delegates up for grabs in Texas (155), he has to finish with more than 50 percent of the vote in all of that state’s districts, which isn’t likely to happen. He is only polling at 39 percent in Texas.
Cruz can say he won his home state, but Trump will still win everywhere else, including all the true “winner-take-all” states.
The GOP brought it on itself when they helped create the Tea Party — the group that so gobbled up their caucuses in both houses of Congress; they have become the party of obstruction. Even now Mitch McConnell, GOP Senate Majority Leader is vowing to not let President Obama appoint a Supreme Court justice to replace Antonin Scalia, confirming the GOP is the party of obstruction. Even Donald Trump is on board with that.
The Republican Party has resigned itself to Trump winning the primaries. Twenty months ago they treated his candidacy like a joke — as we all did — but now his power with the party base is undeniable.
He won’t disavow the support of racists like David Duke because he knows many of his supporters are responding to his racist and xenophobic statements, especially the white supremacists that see Trump as the guy who will whiten up America. And the Tea Party got its start because they couldn’t handle the idea of a Black Guy being president. Those are many of the people supporting Donald Trump and he doesn’t want to lose them.
- On his radio program Duke told his listeners if they didn’t vote for Trump it would be “treasonous” to their culture. Here’s another sample of Duke’s program.
The Republican Party has become so dysfunctional we now have former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman vowing to vote for Hillary Clinton before she votes for Donald Trump. Freshman Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse penned an open letter, posted on Facebook, to Trump’s supporters, telling them why he will look for a sufficiently conservative third option to support if Donald Trump is the GOP nominee.
Senate Majority Leader — Senator Obstruction himself — Mitch McConnell said if Trump was his party’s nominee he would “drop him like a hot rock.” Senator Lindsey Graham, himself a GOP candidate at one time, saying — only half jokingly — “My party has gone bat shit crazy.”
- He also said, at that same dinner (Washington Press Club Foundation), “Ben Carson is the nice guy in the race — and he tried to kill his cousin.” “If you killed Ted Cruz on the floor of the Senate, and the trial was held in the Senate, no one could convict you.” “Then there’s Marco, the boy wonder.” “How did I lose to these guys?”
If these four rather prominent Republicans are saying it out loud, making it part of their public records, how many others are saying it behind closed doors?
The thing is, if you speak out against Donald Trump he retaliates and a lot of Republicans in office can’t afford to be on the business end of Trump’s shit stick. They need his supporters to be their supporters when it comes time for re-election.
On the other hand, if Trump does represent the GOP in November, the entire party will lose up and down the ticket as most voters will reject Trump and his party — which really wasn’t his party until about 21 months ago.
If they force someone else to the top of the ticket over Trump, they will lose a majority of those voters and once again lose not just the presidency, but many of their down-ticket races as well.
The GOP has been pandering to the people supporting Trump since 1968. Now they have to deal with the fruit of their sins — Donald Trump is their party’s leader. Congratulations Republicans, Abraham Lincoln would be so proud.
Tim Forkes started as a writer on a small alternative newspaper in Milwaukee called the Crazy Shepherd. Writing about entertainment, he had the opportunity to speak with many people in show business, from the very famous to the people struggling to find an audience. In 1992 Tim moved to San Diego, CA and pursued other interests, but remained a freelance writer. Upon arrival in Southern California he was struck by how the elected government officials and business were so intertwined, far more so than he had witnessed in Wisconsin. His interest in entertainment began to wane and the business of politics took its place. He had always been interested in politics, his mother had been a Democratic Party official in Milwaukee, WI, so he sat down to dinner with many of Wisconsin’s greatest political names of the 20th Century: William Proxmire and Clem Zablocki chief among them. As a Marine Corps veteran, Tim has a great interest in veteran affairs, primarily as they relate to the men and women serving and their families. As far as Tim is concerned, the military-industrial complex has enough support. How the men and women who serve are treated is reprehensible, while in the military and especially once they become veterans. Tim would like to help change that.