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The Trump "Effect"

Updated on July 10, 2015

The Trump "Effect"

Republicans don’t have a “Trump” problem. No, the GOP is suffering from, to put it simply-their own success. The party’s overriding principal is anger, demonizing those who the base doesn’t like. We see and hear the rhetoric, the slurs and denunciations- constantly. Blacks, liberals, welfare recipients, college students, gays, atheists, the unemployed, and environmentalists (dam the tree huggers) are, in a nutshell, non grata. The GOP, via Fox “News” and angry pundits- exploits and nurture its base’s anger. The GOP, for instance, gloried veterans, heroes they call them; however, when a soldier serving in Iraq, not sure of his sexual predilections, dared to ask about gay rights during the 2012 presidential debate, which was a categorical circus, he, the supposed hero, was booed by the conservative audience. You see, the secret of the GOP, the mechanism that keeps it relevant, if you will, is keeping its base perpetually angry. Even when the GOP was in power, controlling both chambers of Congress and the Presidency, the base was still angry, still believing the liberals was dominating Washington and their lives, trouncing their freedoms.

How’s Trump relevant, you ask? Well, recently, if you weren’t paying attention, Trump made some rather rude, incoherent, and plain stupid comments regarding Mexicans (though he also made some bazaar comments regarding China as well). Trump claimed Mexico was sending its worse people- rapists and drug dealers (I wonder if it ever occurred to Trump that American rapists and killers are also crossing the border into Mexico to evade the law, so, employing his twisted logic, America’s sending its worst to Mexico).

The backlash was, to be expected- swift. Many companies cut ties with Donald- Macy’s and NBC Universal naming two. The Donald, despite his comments, is doing especially well in the GOP polls. Why? Trump's rhetoric, as irreverent as it is, certainly has appeal in the GOP. The GOP has a history of vilifying undocumented immigrants. Congressman Steve King from Iowa, denouncing the Dreamer Act, said, “Some of them are valedictorians -- and their parents brought them in. It wasn't their fault. It's true in some cases, but they aren't all valedictorians. They weren't all brought in by their parents. For every one who's a valedictorian, there's another 100 out there who weigh 130 pounds -- and they've got calves the size of cantaloupes because they've been hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert.” Mo Brooks suggested undocumented children could be the cause of the measles outbreak just a few months back. Mitt Romney suggested “self-deportation” was a viable policy. I, or anyone for the matter, can write ad infinitum about the disdain the GOP has for undocumented immigrants.

Every Republican, mind you, who dared to call for immigration reform experienced backlash. Senators John McCain Marco Rubio, for example, both-defying the party-proposed immigration reform and experienced an intense backlash so hostile that they were forced to abandon and castigate their own proposals. When you hear Republicans say Trump doesn’t speak for the party, remember there isn’t much, if any, daylight between what Trump says and what the party believes. The GOP, I think, is having a Mitt Romney moment. During the 2012 election, also-ran Romney was recorded saying 47% of Americans depend on the federal government and will eventually vote for Obama regardless what he proposed. Romney, I imagine, must have made this statement before to his donors, but the public wasn’t meant to hear it. Trump is saying what prominent members and wealthy donors within the party are saying in sub rosa, not for the public to hear.

Trump is far from a caring conservative. His Republican bona fides is, to say the least, are questionable. He's been a registered Democrat, and supported a single-payer health care system, which is anathema to conservatives.


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