The Republican Party is dying. It’s on its last leg and slouches like that rough beast William Butler Yeats talked about. It didn’t have to be this way. The Republican Party was the Party of Lincoln. It no longer can say that. It’s so far removed from Lincoln or Dwight Eisenhower or even Teddy Rooslevelt that it can no longer look at those three Presidents as a sign of glory anymore.
The Republican Party is the party of Ronald Reagan and his crooked deals with Wall Street and Reaganomics that destroyed the Middle Class. It’s the party of Richard Nixon that was nearly brought down by a mediocre burglary that left a paper trail that stretched all the way back to Nixon’s hometown of Wittier, Calif. This is was the first time Middle Americans saw the Presidency as one of total corruption. It’s the party of the Bushes, a corrupt family that could’ve been one of the most power political dynasties of all time, but had so many faults the name has become synonymous with “war criminal” and “failure.”
And it has become the party of Donald Trump so badly that people have called them Trumplicans. The Republican Party didn’t start out this way. Surprisingly, the Republicans were able to grab the Southern Democrats, aka Dixiecrats, upset over the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This is ironic because Nixon himself came from Quakers who were abolitionists. But Nixon didn’t like black people so much he made cannabis a major felony substance so police could arrest black people easier in the post Jim Crow/segregation era. And Reagan himself was no fan of black people either and he decided that crack cocaine is a more dangerous substance than regular cocaine, even though it’s the same just in different form. This was to go after the black people who were using it as incarcerations increased.
They were becoming a party of racists by the time the 1970s were changing things. It was was legal for interracial marriage with Loving v. Virginia. But the Republican Party used the same racism the Moral Majority had tried to spearheaded and made it their party’s goal in the 1980s, spreading the concept of the “welfare queen,” which was some hypothetical black woman who was constantly having kids from different men and getting the government to pay for them. At the same time, he cut taxes for the wealthy and this lead to the widening of the wealth gap.
But it’s not just systemic racism even though I can make an entire blog post about that. No, with the Republican Party, it became about control. How were they going to stay in control? After Reagan, the likelihood that George H.W. Bush would be President wasn’t likely. So many people were ready to replace Reagan after the Iran-Contra Affair. If Gary Hart hadn’t dropped out, he would’ve been President. Bush was only the second President to ascend from the Vice-Presidency to the Presidency.
And that was the problem. He just carried over Reagan’s policies into a different world as the Cold War ended. Bush Sr. lost because he had no domestic policy. It was just keep things the way Reagan did which worked during the Cold War. Well, that didn’t work out in 1992 when there are riots over the Rodney King case and the economy is tanking. Yes, Bush Sr. was very qualified. But just because someone looks good on paper doesn’t mean they’ll do good on the job. And people didn’t want him. With H. Ross Perot, votes that should’ve went toward Bush went toward him.
And the current Republican Party grew with one goal – win at whatever costs. Baby Boomers were in their 30s and 40s now and the whole “Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way” mentality was their motto. The economy was bad under Bush but if they could make people feel it was Bill Clinton’s fault, they would get power which they did in 1994.
And for a while it worked. It worked too well. Their way of doing things was simple. They would push their agenda and stop the Democrats agenda. If they lost, they would question how and why they lost. “Dead people voted. “”There was fraud at the polls.” “People were kept from voting.” “What evidence? Dont’ you believe us?”
In 2012, I was covering an election where the challenger got 400 more votes than the incumbent or 65 percent of the total vote. Of course, a recount was requested and I think the challenger ended up getting more votes. But it didn’t matter. If it’s too close, then question the votes. If there’s too big of a gap, question the vote. Always question the votes. That is what the Republican Party is doing this year.
If they win, they’ll celebrate. If they lose, they’ll question the election. It’s like a spoiled brat playing a game. The brat makes up the rules as they go along as long as they win. Trump has become that brat for the Republican Party. The brat who never loses. Trump was going to behave this way in 2016 if he lost anyway. He was going to use the lost in 2016 to help his brand.
But now, he’s facing the possibility of criminal charges with what’s happened in D.C., New York and Georgia. If Republicans can make people question the legitimacy of all elections, they can make people question who is in charge. And of course, Republicans and Trump can’t believe more people would’ve turned out in 2018 and 2020 to vote, so there must be fraud because there’s more people voting. Even though prior to Trump, there was a low voter turnout prior to 2016, they can’t believe more people would turn out and vote. And people would vote to turn out in record numbers during a pandemic is what confuses them.
But Trump and other Republicans are using the old “Whoever screams loudest wins the argument” playbook they’ve been doing since the post-9/11 era. Most Republicans know good and well that George W. Bush didn’t win Florida. If the roles were reverse with a Democrat as Secretary of State overseeing the state’s election while also working on Al Gore’s campaign, there would have been so much of an uproar. The Republican Party has gotten itself so secluded amongst itself it can’t see that anyone else things differently.
And what they also can’t see is there are conservative-leaning people who don’t want to be associated with the Republican Party or Donald J. Trump anymore. Misogny and sexism cost Hillary Clinton the White House in 2016. But what cost Trump the White House in 2020 was the realization that we may hit the point of no return. Trump is the only President to lose the popular vote twice. But Trump getting the electorial vote twice? That’s not good.
What’s also hurt the Republican Party has been the belief a vote means the utmost and unquestionable loyalty to a candidate. No. It means that you’re making a decision based on previous experiences versus what you hope will happen with your current selection. Ldet’s say you go into a restaurant and order an entree and it comes with a choice of sides which are potato salad or macaroni and cheese. You don’t care for potato salad but you really don’t want macaroni and cheese but can’t substitute, you’ll still eat the potato salad. It doesn’t mean you will eat the potato salad all the time when what you really wanted was fucking french fries which they don’t have.
If the potato salad upsets your stomach, the next time, you’ll order something else. And if that doesn’t suit you, you’ll find another restaurant. The problem is that people are seeking out other restaurants, while the Republican Party is like that one failing restaurant in town that everyone says you have to continue eating at. Yet the service is terrible. They don’t wipe down the tables and chairs. The food doesn’t taste too good anymore. And what portions they do give you don’t match the prices you’re paying. At the same time, they’re expecting a huge tip and five-star ratings.
I don’t really agree with the two-party system but I do know that it keeps the minority of voters from selecting all the decisions. If we had 10 active parties and the party that gets in power only gets 30 percent of the votes, that’s the problem. That’s how Adolf Hitler got in power. And the next thing he did was ban all other parties. Republicans have been vocal about doing the same thing because they know they are now the minority. If you look at the states with two Republican Senators, they do not have much of a population compared to states with two Democrate Senators. So, even though the Democrats control the House, and a slim percentage of the Senate, the Republicans are getting a leg-up on a technicality.
Regardless of what happens today, it’s not going to be the end. Whatever loss happens, the Republican will question it. If they lose big time, they definitely will scream and holler. People are saying statistically the party not in the White House wins in the mid-terms. However, that has really only been the case with the House since 1994, the same era when the Boomers brecame in total power. Boomers are dying off. And those that are still alive are being told the Social Security and Medicare they’re now eligible for will be taken away from them.
But I wouldn’t doubt that Gen Xers, Millennials and even Gen Zers make some changes in the elections. Think of all they’ve been through in the past 20-25 years. Twice a presidential candidate won the popular vote but not the electoral vote. There’s 9/11, two wars that did nothing more than work for the rich corporations, a housing crisis followed by the Great Recession. Then, there was the Covid-19 pandemic which annual booster shots probably now until the end of their lives decades from now.
At the same time, rent is too high because corporations are buying all residential properties. Gasoline and food prices are too high not because of infaltion but because of price gouging. Younger people don’t believe the same old bullshit lies. Republicans scream about the southern border. They might as well be screaming about saving the gas lamp lighters. The fear mongering and same talking points that might have applied to people 10-15 years ago don’t work anymore.
We could have prevented this in 2010 but the Tea Party was able to use a lot of anti-Obama and anti-government sentiments to make new gains. And for the most part, voters across the nation stayed home. That changed in 2016 with Trump. Unfortunately, he brought out the people who should never, ever vote. They were people who didn’t pay attention in civics and political science class.
But what happened in 2018 changed Mid-Term elections to the point we need to stop calling them “Mid-Terms.” Every election is important. If you’re voting for the school board, it’s important. If you’re voting for the municipal council offices, it’s important. If you’re voting for a bond resolution or a proposition, it’s important. Hopefully, people are getting the message.
The Republican Party is trying so hard to make it harder for people to vote they’re not even hiding it anymore. They do not want us to vote at all. They’re making you present valid IDs and even then questioning them. Armed people are standing guard outside polling places. Hack filmmakers like Dinesh D’Souza is falsefying real images and video in 2000 Mules to make it look like people are voting illegally. They wouldn’t be doing this if they didn’t know there was the possibility they might and will probably lose.
I knew it was going to get uglier as the Republican Party is dying more and more with each election. Boomers are literally dying. The only other people who claim to be Republicans are very well off people who want to continue the policies of Reagan and Trump to cut taxes more and more for the rich and wealthy. And finally, the last and possibly lowest form of Republicans are the racists, sexists, misogynistic and uneducated. Sometimes this includes religious figures as well as anyone who wears camoflauge while not on their way or coming from hunting.
They’re fighting so hard for their survival, they don’t care about the consequences as long as they can stay in power as long as they can. If there is a fire in a crowded place, people just run for the exits regardless of who they trample on. Climate change, women’s health if abortion is banned nationalwide, deaths from people losing access of Medicare, etc., they do not care. Not that I’m advocating anything, but I think some of this would change if Trump would die between now and the 2024 elections.
Sadly, Ron DeSantis and Gregg Abott and others are waiting in their wings to pick up where Trump left off. Elections matter and if we can keep people like Abbot, DeSantis and Trump out of office, then we’ve suceeded. And like that potato salad, we don’t got to eat it all the time. But that’s all the Republican want to serve.
What do you think? Please comment.