Monday, January 18

With the Capitol riot, the Trumpistas have become a de facto third party | Republicans


WWednesday’s invasion of our “temple of democracy” was an “insurrection” only in the sense of black comedy. What was essentially a flag-draped motorcycle gang with batons broke into America’s premier country club, chased senators to the Capitol catacombs, squatted on Mike Pence’s throne, trashed the office of Nancy Pelosi and took countless selfies to send to guys coming home to white land. . Otherwise they had no idea and when the serious cops finally arrived, they came out grabbing souvenirs to show Daddy Trump. Monty Python with four corpses.

Meanwhile, several hundred evacuated solons were sweating together in their hiding place. Some of the Republicans, firmly loyal to their cult of death, rejected the masks offered by the police. An outraged Democrat described it as a “wide-spread event.” Hours later, Rep. Jake La Turner, a staunch Trump from Kansas, promptly tested positive for the virus.

Unsurprisingly, liberal pundits are now telling us that the far right has committed suicide, that the Trump era is over, and that Democrats are free to build their glittering city on the hill.

Indeed, the mutiny was a deus ex machina that removed Trump’s curse from the careers of conservative war hawks and young right-wing lions whose highest ambitions have been shackled by the presidential cult.

By the White House Leader Principle By standards, Trump’s former Praetorian Guard – Senators Tom Cotton, Chuck Grassley, Mike Lee, Ben Sasse, Marco Rubio and Jim Lankford – are now traitors beyond the limits. Ironically, this frees them to become potential presidential contenders in a party that is still far-right but is post-Trump. Furthermore, his path has been facilitated by Ted Cruz’s stupid and self-defeating decision to pose as the leader of the president’s enraged mob.

The resumption of the joint session on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning was the and you, brutme? At the time, staunch former Trumpists, including half of the “stolen elections” team, mimicked Biden’s call for “a return to decency” and denounced the actions of the zombified common people whom they had applauded hours earlier as patriots.

Let’s be clear about what happened: the monolith has cracked and the Republican Party is splitting. Preparations for this have been in progress since the election, with several conservative elites loosely but vigorously plotting to regain power from the Trump family. Big companies, especially, have been burning their bridges to the White House in the wake of the Covid-19 disaster and Trump’s chaotic war on the constitutional government.

The most sensational defection involves that pivotal republican institution, the National Manufacturers Association. While the riot was ongoing, they asked Pence to use the 25th Amendment to depose Trump. Of course, they had been happy enough during the first three years of his regime to enjoy the colossal tax cuts, comprehensive rollbacks of environmental and labor regulation, and trade sanctions to China, but the last year brought the inevitable recognition. that the White House was totally incapable of managing major national crises or guaranteeing basic economic and political stability.

The goal is to realign power within the party more closely with traditional capitalist power centers like NAM and the Business Roundtable, as well as with the Koch family, who have long been uncomfortable with Trump. However, you should not be under the illusion that the “moderate Republicans” have suddenly risen from the grave; The pop-up bill will preserve the core alliance between evangelical Christians and economic conservatives and presumably defend most of the Trump-era legislation.

Institutionally, Senate Republicans, with a strong roster of talented young predators, will rule the post-Trump field, a generational succession that will likely be tight before their Democratic counterparts finally ditch their own octogenarian oligarchy. Internal competition will be fierce, another monster ball, but centrist Democrats should be cautious when issuing death sentences. Freed from Trump’s electronic fatwas, some of the younger Republican senators may turn out to be formidable contenders for the college-educated white suburban vote that has been the holy grail for the Democratic establishment.

That is one side of the divide. The other is more dramatic: the true Trumpistas have become a de facto third party, sheltered in state legislatures and the House of Representatives. As Trump embalms himself in bitter revenge fantasies, reconciliation between the two sides is unlikely.

A poll taken Tuesday found that 45% of Republican voters supported the assault on the Capitol. These true believers will allow Trump to terrorize the Republican primaries in 2002 and ensure the preservation of a large contingent in the House and in the red state legislatures. (Republicans in the Senate, who access huge corporate donations, are far less vulnerable to such challenges.)

Democrats may gloat at the prospect of open civil war among Republicans, but their own divisions have been affected by Biden’s refusal to share power with progressives. The best hope for the left will be radical electoral reforms that roll back restrictions on Republican voters and accelerate the racial and generational turnover of the electorate. But Mitch McConnell’s main legacy, a far-right supreme court, can be an insurmountable obstacle.

In any event, the only future we can reliably foresee, a continuation of extreme socio-economic turmoil, renders political crystal balls almost useless. The cold civil war in the United States is far from over.

  • Mike Davis is the author of City of Quartz, Late Victorian Holocausts, Buda’s Wagon, and Planet of Slums. He has received a MacArthur Fellowship and the Lannan Literary Award. He lives in san diego

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