I have no idea why so many smart people are saying that anything that happened over the last few days changes this election, or destroys the Republican Party. Pay attention, people. that is not what is happening.
The Republican Party has become the party that harbors racism, sexism, misogyny, xenophobia, hate, politically expedient willful ignorance about all things science, classism, anything anti-PC, and dedicated service to the demands of the wealthiest Americans.
Most of that comes from the Tea Party the rest comes from the elite in the party. In this way, the Republican Party represents something just under a majority of Americans, about something percent. America is a racist country. America is a misogynist and sexist country. America is a country that isn't quite sure about education and has no real interest in universal health care. America has one of the most abysmal criminal justice systems of any democracy.
(The Republican Party has always been bad at security, economics, medium and small sized business support, education, science, the environment, family values, healthcare. That isn't particularly relevant to the question at hand, but I just felt like mentioning it, because this is something most people don't seem to know.)
The Republican Party has been unable to put forward a candidate for President that enough Republicans could support that they would have a chance of winning for three elections in a row. Why?
Romney was too normal for the base (the Tea Party). McCain was (allegedly) famous for working across the aisle and being a states-person (both exaggerations, but that was the belief). He was unacceptable to the Tea Party even after pandering to them by making the single worst pick for Vice President ever in our history. Neither candidate was able to beat a black man in a racist country. This happened because the party has major factions, the Tea Party and everyone else, and the elite in the party chose to please themselves and not the Tea Party in the election. So the Tea Party said no.
This year the Republicans finally put up a candidate that represents their majority, a sexist, racist, misogynist, willfully stupid, anti-education, anti-environment, pro 1%er movie star. This candidate will also lose. The base will support him; these latest scandals will not affect that at all. But the leadership and party elite have already failed to ensure a Trump victory by their inaction, and what little they were doing now ends (as does some important funding).
It takes more than one thing to win an election, and one of those things is the support of a good number of voters. But another thing is the full throated and vigorous support of a lot of other well known partisans, surrogates, representatives, together with money from the usual sources.
McCain had the latter, not the former; Romney had the latter, not the former. Trump has the former, not the latter.
In the end, this year's Republican candidate, Donald Trump, will be trounced by a woman in a sexist country, must like McCain and Romney were beat by a black man in a racist country.
There is NO DIFFERENCE between the Romney campaign, the McCain campaign, and the Trump campaign. They all are or were doomed to fail for the same reasons, though the details represent different sides of the same coin.
Republicans will lose this year, not because of this week's gaffs by Trump. They were going to lose anyway. People will still vote for Republicans in the Congress, and at the state Level. Overall, while Republicans may lose a down ticket race here or there, they will maintain control of at least one house of congress or, if they lose both houses, they'll get at least one back in a short two years from now. No one who knows anything about American politics doubts this.
Having a Republican congress (full or in part) obviates the President, for the most part. And, since the Republicans' main goal is to make government ineffective, the Republicans win no matter who is in the white house. A similar formula applies across the states as well.
And, nothing will change about this. All this talk about the Republican Party falling apart, going away, having to change, is well meaning wishful thinking.
The Republicans will win this year, again, no matter who goes into the White House, just like they won in 2012, 2008, 2004, 2000, and so on most of the way back to just after World War II. Even though they are in the (slim) minority.
Sadly, I believe you are correct. Not that the Democrats, in their frequent capitulation to the Right over the last 40 years, have not helped - but by and large, it's been conservative and Republican ideas that have won the long-term battles.
This is chilling:
It shows clearly how it is entirely possible for America in this century to become like Germany 80 years ago. It is here, now.
"Sadly, I believe you are correct. Not that the Democrats, in their frequent capitulation to the Right over the last 40 years, have not helped – but by and large, it’s been conservative and Republican ideas that have won the long-term battles."
Yes and no.
The GOP has systematically leveraged its positions. It finances its positions by offering give aways and capitulating on fairness and regulation issues with big business and the wealthy. It has established a brain-trust and employment/welfare system through think tanks, directed publishing, position papers, and a steady supply of legislation-ready proposed laws though ALEC. Knowing that it is the states that control redistricting they target key districts in key states at the state level. They work to fill local administrative and legislative positions with ideologically compatible people. They have a comprehensive and multi-level system, a machine. to gain and keep power and control.
The Democrats have never had this level of organization. funding, discipline. Organizing Democrats is like herding cats.
The GOP holds a large majority at local, state and national offices. They have installed most of the judges. Have controlled redistricting, and effectively run the country in term of practical measures both for the last 60 years, and likely for the foreseeable future.
On the other hand liberals have bent the conservatives over on human rights, race relations, sexual rights, freedoms, welfare, and pretty much on every issue that might be said to be progress.
Consider that while the laws, and certainly not the higher ideals, are not well or consistently applied the fact is that black and brown people, and women can and do vote, have a lot more choices of where and how to live. Unions have been beaten and battered but they still exist and but for constant attacks they would spring back to vibrancy and power.
The racism, sexism, bigotry, xenophobia, anti-worker and fairness fights cost them time and energy. The Democrats are learning even as the GOP leaders and constituencies age and grow tired. Trumps is so extreme, IMHO, because they have to remove all the stops to even have a chance on the national stage. They have to go 'up to eleven' in an all-out, no holds barred, threaten violence, and operate from a alternate reality mentally, because they can neither accept nor take responsibility for what they have said and done.
I hate to think Trump might win. It is obvious that the problems of government have to do with GOP candidates and voters, not government itself.
For the time being the GOP will maintain enough power to stop progress. But they will continue to lose of the bigger issues and, with time and the death of the bay boomers, they will lose power.
On Facebook I have seen some Republican Party politicians have asked Donald Trump to "drop out," as if there was time for the cult to nominate someone else. The America Treason Party is stuck with Trump as their candidate, and I hope the cult chokes to death.
"On Facebook I have seen some Republican Party politicians have asked Donald Trump to “drop out,”
There is also a bevy of posts with a picture that has text along the lines of "If people are really so upset about what Trump said, who the hell bought all those copies of 50 Shades of Grey?", followed by dozens of people stating agreement, saying that he didn't say anything any other man hasn't said, that he was set up, etc. I heard a group of men this morning discussing the story about his his "yes, you can call my daughter a piece of ass" conversation with Stern. One said "Every dad with a hot daughter has thought that some time."
Anecdotes do not equal data, but the fact that the sets of people who would say things like that are non-empty is sad and scary.
And as every Trumpkin knows, "Thinking about it is equivalent to actually doing it". And Adolf was only saying things about Jews that every other German was already thinking... So he's harmless and there's no justification to condemn his speech either.
Little wonder that the American Nazi party is simply delighted to have Trump's party align with theirs...
I have noticed that Americans love divided government.
No matter which party has the Presidency, except for a few years here and there, most of the time, the other party controls the house, the Senate or both.
It seems that the only thing the majority of Americans like less than a do nothing Congress is a Do Something Congress.
RickA, when one party gerrymanders the nation's election districts, it can no longer be said that "the majority of Americans" prefer this or that.
It becomes, "The unpopular minority of Americans" prefer. And they are most welcome to meet the fate referred to by Desertphile in #5.
If this weren't the reality with the Republican party it would be much funnier.
this blog is a real load of dung! what a waste of internet space! the left is morally bankrupt
What S. Craig must be telling us is that the statement, anything that happened over the last few days changes this election, or destroys the Republican Party, is, in his eloquently voiced opinion, above, false.
Ergo, S. Craig seems to be in the camp that the Republican Party will be destroyed by these recent revelations about the revulsions of Donald Trump, and that the voters will join the Republican Party leaders in convincing the electorate to vote against the Trumpkin Party candidates.
We shall see... But it will likely be moved more in that direction after tonight's debate. And in the coming weeks as more evidence of Demonic Don's "moral bankruptcy", as you so put it, surfaces.
(Sorry about your agonizing cognitive dissonance, S. Craig. Must be really causing you a lot of mental stress...)
"Having a Republican congress (full or in part) obviates the President"
And yet there are people who whine about what an ineffective President Obama has been - of course he's ineffective, he's only the President. People who whine about how ineffective a President was without mentioning that it's because power mainly rests with congress are just demonstrating their ignorance of the US system of government.
Well, we did have President Cheney, who's spent his entire political career trying to elevate the office of the president to have all the capacity and capabilities of a dictator...
And then the conservatives had the temerity to complain when Obama assumed the presidency and started wielding some of those extra powers.
Entertainment , as our new religion , may well be the REAL opiate of the masses. [I know- its not so new- I remember hearing my parents discuss Kennedy vs Nixon TV debate!] It is certainly the drug of choice for most “journalists” and their parent organizations. Unlike football commentators who can only wish for a closer contest, the news media can actually create such an environment….and, as profit driven enterprises, it is ALWAYS in their best interests to do so.
I am grateful that the GOP has nominated this Orange Satan of Insecurities… he has single handedly sabotaged at every turn the news attempts to portray him as worthy of serious , adult consideration. Had another , a bit more self aware , sleazeball [I’m looking at YOU Ted Cruz] been running, the issue would very much still be in doubt.
By the way- anyone else get the feeling that much of the dismissal of Bernie had more to do with making sure HRC, with her long record as a favorite [after that black “Kenyan” fella of course] Tea Party target became a ratings winning nominee , than any real parsing out of policy positions and histories? Before you answer please check the record breaking viewership of the last Pres debate. I’ll wait.
Greg’s point regarding local politics is also tied IMHO to the for-profit -news industry. Vigilant, nuanced and researched journalism simply had [and has] no chance running against the O’Reilly -s, Limbaughs and Hannity-s…. not to mention the newer rise of Alt Right trolls. And that seems to enflame a seriously obsessive compulsively relentless group of right wingers at the local level….and I too, see no way out of this [ Although – on the national level, steering clear of another Scalia nominee IS significant].
I managed to watch 2 minutes 22 seconds of the second president candidate "debate" before I vomited in disgust and left the bar. Okay, maybe the vomit was the tequila, but the candidates COMPLETELY IGNORED THE FIRST QUESTION and spewed a canned well-practiced speech about ":how wonderful I am."
With the candidates ignoring the questions, why the blood hell even pretend to ask them questions?
I refuse to vote for either of them. Fuck them both in the eye with the same pointed stick.
Tradition, I guess... People like to gauge body language... and maybe feel some feelings about things they like to feel feelings about... feely feelings...
Did Trump stop his slide? Maybe. It wasn't pretty.
The similarities of Trump and Republicanism to traits of pathological Narcissism are remarkable:
"pathological narcissism is characterized by at least five of the following characteristics:
A need for constant attention and admiration
A sense of entitlement
Interpersonally exploitative (i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends)
Lack of empathy (is unwilling or unable to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others)
Envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her
An arrogant and haughty behavior or attitude
A preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
A belief that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people
Democratic narcissism is a little less crudely obvious than the Republican kind, and a lot less socially destructive, but it is there too. There seems to be a certain amount of built in narcissism in the biology of life. The built in belief that one's genes are special, the crown of creation as it were, and that one should spread these genes throughout the cosmos.
Life blunders along. People like Trump and the tea party are dealing with the problems that arise when unrealistic beliefs crash into reality. Narcissistic beliefs that are useful in infancy are pathological later in life. Economic society exploits narcissism to sell products and encourages infantile feelings.
In summation: The protoplasm blunders on.
I agree with Greg that this will not affect the outcome of the Presidential race. Three decades of full-bore media hate ensure that a significant fraction of the population would never vote for Hilary Clinton, but the fraction was never large enough for Trump to win.
Where this will matter is the downballot races. Some Republicans won't bother to show up. Others, the diehard Trumpites, will vote for Trump as President but not bother with the downballot races where the candidate has not supported Trump sufficiently. And some independents who will not vote for Trump will also be unwilling to vote for downballot Republicans who have been too supportive of Trump. These effects could swing a couple of Senate races, and even put the House in play. For instance, here in NH Sen. Kelly Ayotte actually said in a debate that she considered Trump a role model, a remark she is now running away from at relativistic speeds. Until last week that race was considered competitive, with some polls showing Ayotte ahead and others showing her challenger ahead. I suspect Ayotte is now toast: the independents will find her too supportive of Trump, and the Trumpites will find her not supportive enough.