How Long Can the GOP Live Within It's Own Skin?


For some time, Old School Republicans have argued that their party has gone too far, it's beyond redemption. Their solution - burn it to the ground and start over.

It's one thing for a political party to entertain a broad spectrum of views, Big Tent politics. However there is no big tent big enough to encompass wildly conflicting realities, one fact based, the other belief based. That is the problem vexing today's Republican Party.

In the runup to the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln, quoting scripture, said that "a house divided against itself cannot stand." He was referring to a nation deeply divided over slavery. The country proved Lincoln right and succumbed to the Civil War.

It's been said that everything Donald Trump touches dies. The Party of Lincoln may be his ultimate victim. As this president's most odious offspring, Don Jr. said just before last week's riot, the GOP was now the Republican Party of Trump.

Two op-eds today, Jennifer Rubin in WaPo, and Thomas Friedman in the New York Times, argue it's time the warring Republican factions went their own ways.

Ms. Rubin argues that pro-Trump/pro-insurrectionist Republicans are poison to the GOP. The party has to purge itself of these types if only for its own survival.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) cannot appear to harbor Trump for a week, allowing him to leave office with the trappings of the presidency. The less decisive McConnell looks and the longer he delays an impeachment trial, the more he looks like insurrectionist cheerleaders Sens. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and Ted Cruz (R-Tex.). In addition, McConnell cannot allow one of his members who voted to disregard the voters’ choice for president, Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), to be the chief money man and face of the Republican Senate reelection team. The same corporate and individual donors who will refuse to take McCarthy’s calls or write him checks will shun Scott. The only hope McConnell has of ever regaining his majority is to cut loose Trump and the most visible faces of the insurrection. He then needs the face of his Senate reelection effort to be a member smart enough to have eschewed sedition from the start. Doing otherwise puts all his members at risk.

Friedman's argument is that the Republicans are already fatally fractured.

I’m not sure I want [Trump] permanently off Twitter and Facebook. There’s important work that I need Trump to perform in his post-presidency, and I need him to have proper megaphones to do it. It’s to blow apart this Republican Party.

My No. 1 wish for America today is for this Republican Party to fracture, splitting off the principled Republicans from the unprincipled Republicans and Trump cultists. That would be a blessing for America for two reasons. 

...If just a few principled center-right Republicans, like Mitt Romney and Lisa Murkowski, abandoned this G.O.P. or were simply willing to work with a center-left Biden team, the Problem Solvers Caucus in the House and like-minded members in the Senate — the people who got the recent stimulus bill passed — would become stronger than ever. That’s how we start to dial down the madness coursing through our nation and get us back to seeing each other as fellow citizens, not enemies.

Second, if the principled Republicans split from the Trump cult, the rump pro-Trump G.O.P. would have a very hard time winning a national election anytime soon. And given what we’ve just seen, these Trumpers absolutely cannot be trusted with power again.

It may be that the Trump cult and the Treason Caucus have fractured the relationship between the Donor Class and the Republican Party. Charlie Koch (brother David died in 2019) has said backing Republicans was a mistake. Last November he said that he wants to support bipartisan solutions. After the sedition of last week, Koch Industries has announced  that future support for candidates will reflect their actions leading up to the riots. Many major donor corporations have put their political gift-giving programmes on hold.

This does seem to present an opportuning to what Friedman calls "principled center-right Republicans" to attract Donor Class backing away from Trump cult Republicans. Even lizards have to shed their skin from time to time.


  1. Your too focused on Trump, your missing bigger things going on in the Republican party.

    1. Somehow an increasing amount of Republicans are abandoning neoliberalism and are no longer kissing corporate ass like they did in the post Reagan era, and are shifting left on economics as it dawns on them corporatist neoliberalism has failed conservatism and backfired on the Republicans as democrats make better corporate flunkies then Republicans. Donars cutting ties with Republicans will only increase this growing rift.
    2. You got formerily Reagan style Republicans now calling for a new deal.
    3. As corporation increasingly deal in censorship Republicans are going to became increasingly less corporation friendly and angrier and they will continue shifting economically leftiwing and interventionalist in the market place.
    4. Nationalism and Populism will increasingly replace Reganomics in the Republican party, there will he hold outs, but too much has happened for the holdouts to maintain control long term.
    5. If Rumours that Tulsi Gabbard switches to the Republicans in 2024 are correct to run as a Republican nominee, a switch she can justify by the DNC cheating to keep her out of debates and other disgusting behavior, then she will beat Biden because Republicans love her and she will be able to still offer universal health-care and win over a lot of more independent minded Progressives. She could very likely beat Biden.

    But if you only focus on Trump, who has less then a week in office left, and the BS theatre of impeachment then your are missing the bigger picture like the fact that conservatives and I think some on the left as well are being purged from social media, not just those who are linked to the riot on capital hill, things like that have consequences.

    1. You might be right, Gyor. I'm not convinced but yours is an interesting take.

  2. .. The USA in my humble view is simply too complex to comprehend. A waning whining Empire. Yes yes.. all the old soothsayings, the National Anthem, God Bless America.. but slice into the 'mom and apple pie', and its factional, infested, troubled, divided and one in five is quite Evangelical. (The Rapture Cometh, praise th Lord !) The Military and all the 'Defense' Contracters are pretty scary. There are boots, hardware, assets on the ground in 72 countries last I looked. There are immigrant children in cages. Its not really 'The United States' anymore.. its clearly the dis-United Regions.. based on Agriculture, Resource Stripping, Economic Clout, Poverty & Ignorance, Gospel, Corrupt Politics, and Racism, Manufacturing 'belts', Climate, Old Money & New Mega Money.. and now they walked on the damn moon and are blowing COVID-19

    And say hey ! Canada is trying to catch up or keep up ! Mountaintop Removal and Coal Trains ? Hold our beers !! We the Boreal !! (not) And we aint no slouches at electing douchebags either.. but WAIT THERE'S MORE !! We got the COVID too dontcha know !

    I keep meaning to check on the number of Infected, Dead or Dying Elders & Seniors in American LTC residences.. How many a day ? Canada 'sheds' about 100 a day. I presume the US 'sheds' a thousand + daily. Is anyone even keeping count ?

    Americans in Texas elected Ted Cruz, Kentucky elected Mitch McConnell - Canadians in Alberta elected Jason Kenney and in Ontario, Doug Ford. To me, it defies belief - lunatic fringe zealots & douchebags.. ultra common pondscum parasites. What could go wrong.. besides EVERYTHING

    (PS.. lovin that spotted shedding salamander.. will ID it !!
    May be a lizard and not amphibious !)

    1. If someone was to rate the U.S. on its qualities, predictability would not rise to the top of the list. America has a disturbingly large percentage of its people who, over decades, have been groomed to believe almost anything. Their 'reality' is whatever they're told to believe it to be. Massive voter fraud, stolen elections, you can get those people, no longer capable of critical thinking, to swallow anything.

      Somewhere in my personal nightmare of bookcases there's a volume that discusses how change occurs once a relatively small percentage of the public, a critical mass, is achieved. The book focuses on positive change but the critical mass dynamic also works in the negative sense. The author provides a number of pretty convincing examples of how surprisingly powerful this is.

    2. As for the reptile, that's a delightful leopard gecko. I bought one for each of my kids. Other than the pain in the ass of having to provide them with live food - crickets and meal worms - they make wonderful pets. They thrived in their terrarium until the children outgrew them at which point I was able to return them to the pet shop where I got them so they could go to a new owner. We got them as juveniles. My kids had them for five or six years. Properly tended they can live to 20 years. And, no, they're definitely not amphibious and, unlike other geckos, they lack the ability to climb glass or walls.

  3. I am not surprised the a Koch supports the "bipartisan solutions" that Biden will craft.
    (Hint: a few gay-marriage/identity-politics type bones for the 'progressives' and then full speed ahead for American War Inc and its attendant version of socialist welfare via military/police/prison spending & control. )

    The Dems are almost as divided as the Rethuglicans and the bipartisan solutions approach will only increase this. They could fracture.

    In the end, I believe, the mutually-beneficial system will provide the inertia to keep the two parties "together" and media control, gerrymandering, voter suppression, fptp and the essentially undemocratic nature of the US system will keep the 'status quo' limping along.

    As for Gyor: His vision brings to mind the DC comics of my youth when they came up with Bizarro World.

    1. I wouldn't be that critical of Gyor, NPoV. He's been right before although I don't agree with him this time. Nixon, after all, was only able to pivot to the Southern Solution, thanks to a cohesive GOP. It's not easy to flip polarity in not just one but both political parties.

      I don't think the Dems are anywhere near as divided as the Republicans. They lack the "go for the throat" insurgency of the Tea Party and Treason Caucus.

    2. critical ??? No, more like in awe.

      I loved the Bizarro world!


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