The Republican Party’s Problem

 

The Liz Cheney brouhaha brought to sharp relief the problems the Republican Party faces with regard to Trump and Trump-supporters.  Liz and her crowd firmly believe that the way to deal with Trump is to rebuke and circumscribe him for his attempt to steal a second term through a campaign of lies about the election.

The problem with this is this:  There are big chunk of the Republican electorate that doesn’t trust the elite mainstream Republicans that Cheney typifies. This chunk includes not only populist white working-class people but also the black and brown people who defected to Trump. They trust Trump.

Why should they trust the Republican mainstream, who has never given a rat’s rear about their plight vis-a-vis jobs, wages, and social issues? Who has never spoken to them or reached out to them and still doesn’t? Even worse, who condemn them as insurrectionists, just like the Democrats do!

Why should they not trust Trump, who recognized and acknowledged their concerns, and then when elected actually did something about them or tried to.

By their lights, the Big Lie is no lie.  The election really was stolen just like everything else has been stolen from them, and they were out to right that injustice by standing up on Jan. 6th.   They don’t think Trump was lying, either.  Trump was speaking the truth for them.

Most Republican politicians know what Cheney and her supporters don’t.  To go against Trump is to brand oneself as one of the  Republicans who don’t care about them, the people.  And this isn’t about a cult of personality, it’s about a specific set of policy priorities. Most Republican pols obviously know this, but they apparently couldn’t get Cheney to understand it.

Yes, the party will eventually move on from Trump, but it will take time.  And it will take someone capable of replacing Trump as the champion of people like his supporters. It will take someone who can fight for the people and yet … uh … tweet nicely.

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  1. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Nicely put.

    I’ve said it elsewhere and I’ll repeat it here: Trump was, in one particular way, the most honest President in my lifetime. He went into office saying exactly what he intended to do and, to a very remarkable degree, he did exactly that — or tried over the numerous objections of the courts and the lack of cooperation from the Congress.

    That’s the last kind of honesty we expect from a politician, and certainly not something we should have expected from Donald Trump. But there it is.

    • #1
  2. W Bob Member
    W Bob
    @WBob

    If a more conventional Republican had lost to Biden with all the same evidence of election shenanigans, would Cheney have been decrying the Big Lie like she is now? There may not have been visible fire, but there was plenty of smoke, which she would have smelled if it wasn’t overpowered by the stench of her loathing of Trump. This is why she deserved to lose her position: her dislike of one man led her to turn a blind eye toward a mortal threat to her country and her party. 

    • #2
  3. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Yes. There’s a basic, common sense diplomacy required when criticizing a man that a big double-digit percentage of conservatives and Republicans actually like. A person in party leadership who fails to demonstrate that diplomacy, whatever she thinks of the man, probably isn’t fit for the job. (I’d say the same about other harsh critics who have an interest in maintaining membership either in the Republican Party or in Ricochet. This is just common sense.)

    Maturity, diplomacy, respect. This shouldn’t be hard.

    • #3
  4. The Cynthonian Member
    The Cynthonian
    @TheCynthonian

    The other thing that the Liz Cheney and Rob Long types miss is that for Trump’s base, election integrity is the hill they will die on…….the make-or-break issue.  It’s not about Trump as a cult of personality.  It’s about ever winning a presidential election again , and ultimately, every office higher than dogcatcher.  The 2020 election sowed widespread distrust.  That didn’t start with Trump.  

    If those in leadership aren’t willing to go to the mat for this issue, when the Dem leadership clearly is, then we need different leadership.

    • #4
  5. DonG (2+2=5. Say it!) Coolidge
    DonG (2+2=5. Say it!)
    @DonG

    I hate corruption.  I really, really hate it.  Right now, I see corruption in most institutions and indifference in half the GOP.  I am thankful that Donald J. Trump was able to fight back, just a little bit, against the SOBs that are ruining my country.  I take solace in knowing that 75 million people–workers, plebs, minions, patriots–think like me. 

    • #5
  6. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    This is Trump’s party.  No problem.  He will either run or be king maker. Cheney (et alia) will wither and die.  We are done with rhinos and pretenders. 

    At least that is my hope. 

    • #6
  7. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    The GOP does not want Trump and his supports.  I wish them luck.  We can take our ball and go home.  
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again.  Does the GOP have enough to do fighting Biden and the Democrats?  But no, they seem to want to side with Biden and the Democrats.  F, them.

    • #7
  8. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    I listened to those who talked in a denigrating manner about a “cult of personality” and “loyalty to Trump” and asked myself why they couldn’t understand that Trump earned that loyalty by speaking the truth and keeping — or at least trying to keep — his promises to his supporters. 

    I didn’t like the answer that rang true to me, and that was that those people never really had any core beliefs. They were motivated by emotion and status, by identification with someone who was a member of the elite. When someone who wasn’t a member of the elite, who spoke plainly and sometimes crudely, yet supported the values they claimed to believe in was elected, their pretense became clear. I’m not sure where it goes from here, other than to say it won’t go back to the way it used to be. 

    • #8
  9. Baker Member
    Baker
    @Baker

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again

    Because that man is still the “leader of the party” according to many other leaders in the party and continues to spout bonkers conspiracy theories about the election and other things. He’s a menace. He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good. 

    He lost. Bigly. If you want “working class” policies, find a new champion who can actually advocate and argue for them to people who arent at or watching his rallies.

    • #9
  10. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Baker (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again

    Because that man is still the “leader of the party” according to many other leaders in the party and continues to spout bonkers conspiracy theories about the election and other things. He’s a menace. He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good.

    He lost. Bigly. If you want “working class” policies, find a new champion who can actually advocate and argue for them to people who arent at or watching his rallies.

    Mexican immigrants – hopefully just the legal ones/citizens – voted for Trump more than any other Republican in the past.  So therefore, by hating Trump, you hate the Mexicans more than anyone could credibly claim that Trump did/does.

    • #10
  11. Baker Member
    Baker
    @Baker

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Baker (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again

    Because that man is still the “leader of the party” according to many other leaders in the party and continues to spout bonkers conspiracy theories about the election and other things. He’s a menace. He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good.

    He lost. Bigly. If you want “working class” policies, find a new champion who can actually advocate and argue for them to people who arent at or watching his rallies.

    Mexican immigrants – hopefully just the legal ones/citizens – voted for Trump more than any other Republican in the past. So therefore, by hating Trump, you hate the Mexicans more than anyone could credibly claim that Trump did/does.

    Not true. W. Bush got 40% of Latino voters in 2004. Trump got somewhere around 30% – maybe a 5% improvement over Mitt. Trump did kill it with the Cubans specifically though. Can’t deny that.

    • #11
  12. Freeven Inactive
    Freeven
    @Freeven

    Roderic:

    The problem with this is this:  There’s a big chunk of the Republican electorate that doesn’t trust the elite mainstream Republicans who Cheney typifies.   This chunk includes not only populist white working class people but also the black and brown people who defected to Trump.   They trust Trump.

    There are also a lot of us out here who don’t particularly like or trust Trump, but recognize that he’s the best thing going — and that makes him sufficiently likeable and trustworthy.

    Yes, the party will eventually move on from Trump, but it will take time.  And it will take someone capable of replacing Trump as the champion of people like his supporters.    It will take someone who can fight for the people and yet … uh … Tweet nicely.

    The current environment is so hostile that I’m not sure that needle can be threaded.

    • #12
  13. philo Member
    philo
    @philo

    “He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good.”

    When I come across shallow, intellectually empty claptrap like this, I realize just how far the quality of our local troll community has fallen. Maybe some enterprising young Ricochet executive should send an intern over to hand out membership coupons outside the Jeopardy studio…I hear that is a target rich environment for skilled lemmings of the progressive persuasion. (No more lawyers, please.)

    • #13
  14. Franz Drumlin Member
    Franz Drumlin
    @FranzDrumlin

    Nohaaj (View Comment):
    This is Trump’s party.  No problem.  He will either run or be king maker.

    This is the crux of the issue, isn’t it?

    • #14
  15. D.A. Venters Member
    D.A. Venters
    @DAVenters

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

     

    Maturity, diplomacy, respect. This shouldn’t be hard.

    Yet, Trump apparently get a pass for ignoring these things, for helping drive record turnout for the other side, helping the other side take control of both houses of Congress and the executive, and to top it off, encouraging one of the ugliest and most embarrassing episodes in recent US political history.

     

    • #15
  16. 9thDistrictNeighbor Member
    9thDistrictNeighbor
    @9thDistrictNeighbor

    Franz Drumlin (View Comment):

    Nohaaj (View Comment):
    This is Trump’s party. No problem. He will either run or be king maker.

    This is the crux of the issue, isn’t it?

    And we got here because of the Republican party that was deferential and polite and voted democrat-lite.  The party that nominated people for all offices, local, state and national, who didn’t challenge the status quo, who “reached across the aisle” as we slid toward Gomorrah.  As Lincoln said of Grant after heavy losses at Shiloh, “I can’t spare this man, he fights.”  After Bush, Bush, McCain and Romney, well what did you expect?

    • #16
  17. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    The funny thing is, the Trump supporters are not the ones focused on Trump, it is the Never Trumpers and the Democrats. 

     

    • #17
  18. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    Baker (View Comment):
    not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel

    You mean the Judge that was an active member in La Raza, the San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, San Diego La Raza Lawyers Association, and a lifetime member of the Hispanic National Bar Association?  So Trump’s noticing this judge was an active member in groups that were resistant to his goals might have some weight on his ruling against him?  

    • #18
  19. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    Baker (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again

    Because that man is still the “leader of the party” according to many other leaders in the party and continues to spout bonkers conspiracy theories about the election and other things. He’s a menace. He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good.

    He lost. Bigly. If you want “working class” policies, find a new champion who can actually advocate and argue for them to people who arent at or watching his rallies.

    Math challenged Never Trumper. He didn’t lose bigly if he lost at all. 

    So still think no tariffs on Chinese slave labor goods is a good idea? 

    Thank you for being what Republicans loathe.

    • #19
  20. DrewInTherapy Member
    DrewInTherapy
    @DrewInWisconsin

    I was really, really okay with the mean tweets.

    • #20
  21. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    Baker (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    what I do not understand is why they insist on beating on a man not in office and will most likely not run again

    Because that man is still the “leader of the party” according to many other leaders in the party and continues to spout bonkers conspiracy theories about the election and other things. He’s a menace. He has very few policies besides not liking Mexicans – see Judge Curiel – and thinking tariffs are good.

    He lost. Bigly. If you want “working class” policies, find a new champion who can actually advocate and argue for them to people who arent at or watching his rallies.

    But he is not the leader of the party.  He has no power or position.  He has even been banned from social media and many media.  Anybody can pick up his mantle.  They just have to adopt his policies and make his supporters believe it.  That may be hard since the GOP has pretty much spent all my lifetime stating that it hates Trump’s supporters only slightly less than the Democrats do.  Sort of a vote for me since I will only beat you with 40 whips while the Democrats will hit you 50 times policy.  Then if Trump supporters believe them they are betrayed as soon as they are elected.  

    • #21
  22. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    The GOP does not want Trump and his supports.

    Sorry, but the GOP is primarily composed of Trump supporters, along with a small but whiny contingent of never-Trumpers . . .

    • #22
  23. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    Stad (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    The GOP does not want Trump and his supports.

    Sorry, but the GOP is primarily composed of Trump supporters, along with a small but whiny contingent of never-Trumpers . . .

    No, the GOP is composed of politicians.  The Trump supporters will vote for those that champion their views.  They do not care if that is GOP, Democrats, libertarians or independents.  

    • #23
  24. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    The funny thing is, the Trump supporters are not the ones focused on Trump, it is the Never Trumpers and the Democrats.

    Exactly! It is the “elite mainstream ‘Republicans’ (EMR) that Liz Cheney typifies” who are cultishly focused on a person. They have always done this, like the dems do. They look for their dreamy ‘Ken doll’ and compare everyone else to that persona.

    President Trump did not match up to their ‘Ken doll’ image, but the voters seemed to like something about him. So they projected their cultish Ken dreaminess onto the Trump voters. Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.  Wrong again EMR! It is about the honesty and the policies and love of America and the Constitution. Someone else besides President Trump could do this. For years he had a cable TV show called The Apprentice. Guess what EMR, if the Kingmaker decides to anoint Governor Ron DeSantis as his apprentice for 2024, your primary is over. So get over yourselves. You are an irrelevant and tiny minority.

    And it is not about President Trump. That is your syndrome, not ours.

    • #24
  25. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    No, the GOP is composed of politicians. 

    You are joking, right?

    • #25
  26. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    Stad (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    The GOP does not want Trump and his supports.

    Sorry, but the GOP is primarily composed of Trump supporters, along with a small but whiny contingent of never-Trumpers . . .

    Actually no.  New polling shows 50% of Republicans prefer the Republican Party to Trump, while 46% prefer Trump to the Republican Party.  This is the first time since 2019 that Trump support was in a minority.  As time goes on, this will accelerate.

    • #26
  27. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    Fake John/Jane Galt (View Comment):
    The GOP does not want Trump and his supports.

    Sorry, but the GOP is primarily composed of Trump supporters, along with a small but whiny contingent of never-Trumpers . . .

    Actually no. New polling shows 50% of Republicans prefer the Republican Party to Trump, while 46% prefer Trump to the Republican Party. This is the first time since 2019 that Trump support was in a minority. As time goes on, this will accelerate.

    KCBS reported yesterday that over 60% of the party believe that they owe “loyalty” to Trump because of what he did and tried to do in his administration. As time goes on, this will accelerate as it becomes clear that the media was against Trump and his agenda all along. As NTs and NATs realize they have no home in the new Republican party, they … actually, I have no idea what those twits will do. No do I care.

    EDIT: And about those polls …

    • #27
  28. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    This may have already been pointed out, but there are close to 55 Republicans in the House who intend to vote in favor of the Jan 6 commission. These are not the Trump Republicans. They are the Liz Cheney group who never learned from past behavior. They think that by siding with the Democrats they will not be tarnished with the Scarlet Letter of Trump. Instead, they will be branded by the truth as people who can never be trusted by anyone. 

    • #28
  29. DrewInTherapy Member
    DrewInTherapy
    @DrewInWisconsin

    cdor (View Comment):

    This may have already been pointed out, but there are close to 55 Republicans in the House who intend to vote in favor of the Jan 6 commission. These are not the Trump Republicans. They are the Liz Cheney group who never learned from past behavior. They think that by siding with the Democrats they will not be tarnished with the Scarlet Letter of Trump. Instead, they will be branded by the truth as people who can never be trusted by anyone.

    They shall be primaried.

    • #29
  30. Django Member
    Django
    @Django

    Yesterday I encountered something I didn’t think existed anymore: An intellectually honest Democrat. Summarized, the comment was: I guess you were right. Biden is a disaster. I’m not saying I could ever vote for Trump, but at least I could have left the top slot blank. 

    • #30