To save the GOP, Republicans have to lose

Opinion writer @ WashPost….

I find myself wandering in an unfamiliar place. As a pro-life conservative, I am honestly happy — no, positively elated — that pro-choice Democrat Doug Jones won Alabama’s U.S. Senate election.

It is an odd position for me, and a complicated one. This change may impose costs to causes I care about. And Democrats did not make my shift of sentiments any easier. A pro-life Democrat (there used to be herds of such unicorns before they were hunted to near-extinction) would have won the Alabama race going away and left me entirely unconflicted.

But even so, it was not a close decision. In reality, the chance that the flip of this seat would somehow determine the fate of Roe v. Wade is vanishingly small. And political leadership does not consist entirely of checking policy boxes. What needs to be considered is the net effect on the country and the cause. And the Alabama election was like looking into the abyss. Roy Mooreism was distilled Trumpism, flavored with some self-righteous moralism. It was all there: the aggressive ignorance, the racial divisiveness, the disdain for governing, the contempt for truth, the accusations of sexual predation, the (just remarkable) trashing of America in favor of Vladimir Putin, the conspiracy theories, the sheer, destabilizing craziness of the average day.

President Trump and his admirers are not just putting forth an agenda; they are littering the civic arena with deception and cruelty. They are discrediting even the good causes they claim to care about. They are condemning the country to durable social division. In Trump’s GOP, loyalty requires corruption. So loyalty itself must be reconceived.

What would weaken the grip of Trump on the GOP? Obviously not moral considerations. The president has crossed line after line of decency and ethics with only scattered Republican bleats of protest. Most of the party remains in complicit silence. The few elected officials who have broken with Trump have become targets of the conservative media complex — savaged as an example to the others.

This is the sad logic of Republican politics today: The only way that elected Republicans will abandon Trump is if they see it as in their self-interest. And the only way they will believe it is in their self-interest is to watch a considerable number of their fellow Republicans lose….

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image…Roy Moore speaks at a campaign rally. (Brynn Anderson/Associated Press)

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40 Comments on "To save the GOP, Republicans have to lose"

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🔴Zreebs
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Sorry. My last post was 12 posts up. James’s new setup confused me

Scott p
Guest
Today Trump and the Republucans passed a big screw job to middle class and poor Americans and a big sloppy wet kiss to the richest of the rich. So excuse me if I don’t care to play your stupid game of how Trump is a “secret Democrat” or is somehow–like everything else you despise in this world–a product of the Clintons. Billionaires got a huge tax cut today while the working poor will see a whopping 40 bucks a year (and a dismantling of their… Read more »
CG
Guest

I don’t know where you see me ignoring anything. This site needs to recruit a genuine Trump apologist who posts frequently and I won’t “ignore” them.

Until then, what am I supposed to do though? Lie about my views to say I agree with you guys on stuff? I accept you for the hyper-partisan cheerleaders that you are and you can accept me for being opposed to the “bad people” in both parties and we can argue along those lines.

Scott p
Guest

As Jack said–this is your release valve to ignore your party completely bending over backwards for a conservative Republican President you personally disapprove of.

I won’t play this silly game either.

CG
Guest

I was given a “Time Magazine 2017 Year in Review” or whatever as a Hanukkah gift and of course, one of the people on the cover is Trump. They should have put more thought into giving me the gift knowing that. Should I just take a scissors and cut him off the cover?

CG
Guest

Bill Clinton literally did call Donald Trump on the phone to tell him to run for President as a Republican and that he could find success doing so.

CG
Guest

People who watch Fox News would tend to be more informed in general (same as with people who watch CNN or MSNBC, whatever)

Many of them, who tended to be conservatives, gave Trump a chance, and are increasingly frustrated with the results. It’s no great surprise. Fox covers him fairly at many hours of the day, in programs that are most geared toward news junkies, and does it’s propaganda for him in the morning and during prime time.

Scott p
Guest

Ah yes the Clintons created Trump.

You are getting hysterical.

CG
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Trump was created by “it’s the economy stupid, character does not matter, my critics are part of a vast conspiracy against me” machine.

Scott p
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Wait so you think FOX News viewers who are turning on Trump are doing so because they are becoming “more informed”?
That’s hilarious!

My Name Is jack
Guest
Well, I see the discussion is now degenerating into your fanciful delusions ,which seemingly is some kind of release valve for you to take out your frustrations at your party’s subservience to Donald Trump. Anyway, you ought to feel good.Your Party is about to give the royal screwjob to poor and Middle Class people ,as the rich and the corporate shareholders reap a financial apbonanza.Why not celebrate? Then again, maybe you still haven’t decided whether you even support it? Or did Scott and I Drive… Read more »
Scott p
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As I said before Trump was created by the conservative media machine. Trump can go away, but as long as the machine exists Trumousm will.

CG
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This new survey shows that Fox News viewers are turning on Trump as well:

https://politicalwire.com/2017/12/15/even-fox-news-viewers-turning-trump/?utm_content=buffer40964&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

I think that fits in with the theory that the more informed someone is, the less likely they are to support him. His base is more likely to get their news from Facebook just like many in Obama’s base depended on “The Daily Show.”

🔴Zreebs
Guest

While Manila appears to get some of his news from Facebook based on his posts, I doubt he is is typical. Far more Republicans get their news from FoxNews. And while there probably are some, I don’t know any Democrats who get their news from the Daily Show.

CG
Guest

How so?

Do you think the next Dem nominee is going to roll to the nomination and campaign in the general election with kumbaya vibes?

My Name Is jack
Guest

That’s funny.

Almost as laughable as the “secret Democrat “ routine,

CG
Guest

The next “Trump” is more likely to emerge among Democrats who will see the example as their path to victory. That doesn’t mean they will share DJT’s positions, but they will adopt his tactics and appeal. The most likely 2020 Dem nominee for President, whomever she or he might be, is going to try to follow the template.

CG
Guest
They accommodate him. Call them Vichy conservatives. Who is the “heir apparent” to Trump though? For better or worse, nobody is ever going to be able to do the shtick he does. He generated support for being an entertainer before all else. Somebody else may try to play on his populist rhetoric or positions, but without the persona, it’s not going to fly. Who is going to get nominated by the Republicans after Trump, assuming he serves two terms? Pence would be the obvious choice,… Read more »
My Name Is jack
Guest

It remains to be seen ,and is far too early ,to declare that Trumpism may just wither away or go the third party route when Trump exits the scene.

There are many ambitious politicians and non politicians who will attempt to replace Trump with his faithful.

One of them may be successful.

My Name Is jack
Guest

I am opposed to all this Impeachment talk among Democrats.

It’s a waste of time and effort and not smart Politically.They should have learned the lesson Republicans did with Clinton.

Besides, while I detest him ,there is nothing that he has done ,nor been proven to have done ,that merits impeachment which,in my view, is nothing to be tossed around lightly.

CG
Guest

Trumpism will outlive Trump but be nowhere near as effective and it will eventually wither away and those people will look elsewhere than the two major parties. There’s nobody else who can really do what he does in the same way. Anyone else would look phonier attempting to do so and Donald Jr. certainly doesn’t seem to have it in him.

The Democrats sure moved away from William Jennings Bryan, to whom Trump might be a comparable force, and Bryan was nominated three times.

My Name Is jack
Guest

Your opinion is not shared by most conservatives who support Trump.

As I illustrated earlier,the opposition to him in the American conservative movement is confined to a relatively few.Most conservatives either enthusiastically support him or have at least accomodated themselves to him and offer general,If not enthusiastic support.

CG
Guest
To state a pretty reliable political axiom though, if Democrats do want to win the White House in 2020, as the challenging party, it would be in their best interest to not be in the Congressional majority. It’s far better politics to blame the entire structure when it is controlled by one party. I said the same thing in regards to Republicans and the 2010 midterms as it related to 2012, even though I wanted to see Republicans win. I know that “impeachment” is a… Read more »
My Name Is jack
Guest
Yes and they are still going to be around after Trump is gone. CG Apparently believes that ,without Trump ,these types will just fall back into line and support traditional Republican types like Romney,Bush etc. Some of them might.Some of them won’t. My view is that Trumpism will outlive Trump .Indeed ,whomever seizes the Trump mantle ,may be a much better politician than Trump.In such a case,one can easily see CG supporting such a character as long as he temperamentally is more dubdued than Trump.… Read more »
CG
Guest

If Democrats take over and hold all the cards, Trump may either revert to his true Democrat self, or pretend to be a Democrat, or just do whatever in order to make himself look as successful as possible. Look at the way he reacted to Alabama by saying that he predicted Moore would lose to a Democrat from the start.

He is a con-man not a con-servative.

CG
Guest
I think we saw in the 2016 primaries that his strongest base was not the most conservative voters. Those people tended to go to Ted Cruz. Trump ‘s base was largely non-ideological, anti-political class, and in many ways were torn between him and Sanders. Trump’s base are the people who will say that Republicans are worse than Democrats. If Democrats take over and he becomes buddy-buddy with Chuck and Nancy and gives them everything they want, they will be fine with that, as long as… Read more »
Scott p
Guest
Trump’s strongest base of supporters are conservative Republicans who hate Obama and everything he did. Why do you think they cheer every time he dies something to negate anything the 44th President did in office? You don’t want to believe that and buy into the myth that the handful of Obama voters who switched to Trump (a group magnified by the supposedly liberal mainstream media) makes up the bulk of those sticking by him. They don’t. It’s right wing, Rush Limbaugh listening, FOX News watching… Read more »
Scott p
Guest

So it sounds to me like CG thinks if the GOP loses it’s Congressiinal majority the Republican President he so despises will simply change parties again and become a Democrat–or at least support Democratic policies like more universal health care, expansion of the social safety net, etc?

CG
Guest
I don’t see the 2020 midterms having any effect on a primary battle one way or another unless the circumstance is that Trump moves to the left to get aligned with Chuck and Nancy and gets rolled by them at every opportunity and then maybe the Tea Party turns on him. It’s still nearly impossible to beat an incumbent in the primaries and the only GOP faction that has an alternative voice are the same people that are largely responsible for the problem in the… Read more »
My Name Is jack
Guest
I’m not talking about your “vote. Obviously , a Republican loss of one or both houses of Congress would weaken Trump considerably and would likely stir up significant internal opposition to him ,likely sparking a serious contest for the party nomination in 2020. As it is.despite what one reads here daily from you and James,outward opposition to Trump within Republican ranks is limited to some “opinion molders,ie, Sykes Krystal, etc, and a few Congresspeople, most of whom are retiring . In essence your hope simply… Read more »
CG
Guest

Of course, I also think that Trump, who has no core principles, could do more damage working with Schumer and Pelosi than he can working with McConnell and Ryan.

All of them, being politicians, will take advantage of his weaknesses, to suit their own ends, however they can. If Democrats win a majority, he’ll sign whatever they put in front of him too as long as he thinks he can claim to be a winner himself, which is his default position on everything.

CG
Guest

I am agnostic to an extent about which party controls Congress while Trump is President, but it is important to realize that I also consider Democrats and their agenda harmful to America.

I don’t know what I am supposed to do to “defeat” Republicans and of course your desire to defeat Republicans goes far beyond this discussion. My vote for U.S. House in 2018, in my district, regardless of where it will go, is going to be irrelevant.

My Name Is jack
Guest
So you favor continued Republican control of both houses of Congress so that they can strenuously strive to enact the present Republican Presidents agenda. Where you and I differ is that you feel that your simple verbalizing your personal opposition to Trump ,while actively supporting ,or at least projecting some feigned “neutrality” as to his legislative agenda , is of some great matter .I don’t. While not doubting your sincere distaste for Trump,to cleanse Trumpism out of your party requires much more that snarky comments… Read more »
CG
Guest

Some Republicans need to lose; not all, or most.

If all or most are done away with, there is nothing left to rebuild with.

My Name Is jack
Guest

CG, do you agree with Gerson prescription for the Republican Party?

That to survive,it must lose?

Scott p
Guest

Just beating Trump won’t save the party though.
Back when DJT was still a Democrat the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and FOX News were spreading “deception and cruelty”

If Trump goes away will they go too?

If not the whole process could repeat itself.

CG
Guest

I think this passage from the article pretty much reflects my thoughts as to why jack (and others) might act surprised that I am anti-Trump even though they assume I buy into his policy agenda”

“President Trump and his admirers are not just putting forth an agenda; they are littering the civic arena with deception and cruelty. They are discrediting even the good causes they claim to care about. They are condemning the country to durable social division.”