The GOP legacy of Donald Trump
Every one by now has heard of the news regarding Trump’s lewd comments about women and stardom. Still, even after all this fervor surrounding the misogynist comments the other bombshell has not reached most people. One of the producers in The Apprentice tweeted that compared to the tapes he has, what we got was nothing.
Putting aside the fact that this sort of tease is kind of stupid and cowardly (if he is going to release them he should do so, not wave them about), it must be said that the normal reaction to these news is: so? How much more evidence do we need for Trump’s obscenity? One could easily argue that those who are just now nudged by the latest are finally seeing what was evident to the majority of the world. Imagine if these people were given less time in order to realise other such evident issues. It is reasonable to say that they wouldn’t be able to reach it. But such is democracy and in order to fix it we can only do so by making people more responsible.
However the issue is not democracy, it is not even Donald Trump exactly. It is the Republican Party. As of right now there are several reports according to which the GOP is trying to find a way through which to take out Donald Trump from their ticket and find a replacement. Apparently they also have redirected funds from the presidential campaign to their congressmen.
Finally after these new tapes released, high ranking officials of the GOP are either speaking out against Trump for the first time, or those who supported him are now withdrawing said support. And one says to that “it’s about time, but it’s still too late”.
Article 9 of the “Rules of the Republican Party” state that
“The Republican National Committee is hereby authorized and empowered to fill any and all vacancies which may occur by reason of death, declination, or otherwise of the Republican candidate for President of the United States or the Republican candidate for Vice President of the United States, as nominated by the national convention, or the Republican National Committee may reconvene the national convention for the purpose of filling any such vacancies.”
Right now it is unclear how this “otherwise” bit might be used as legal ground for ousting Trump since he is not dead, and will not back down from the race. However if we are to take the sentiment of the sentence and apply it to the “otherwise” bit we must reach the conclusion that it refers to other ways in which the candidate were to be incapacitated. Not that the GOP somehow retains power to change candidates before the election on a whim.
Try as some in the GOP might, they will never be able to outlive the shame of nominating a man like Trump for President of the United States. It’s not only the surface level fact that in the future in all comedy shows, every time the GOP fumbles or makes a bad call, a clip of Donald Trump will accompany it with the line “the 2016” presidential nominee. It is the fact that one of the country’s biggest political parties believed him to be worthy of their legacy, ideals, and would consequently make a good President. They thought it wise that the world go through a “Trump era” and that it would be good.
Of course this is only speculation. One cannot be certain what kind of era it would be. We can only base our judgements on the kind of man that would lead said era. So, it doesn’t matter that we did not go through the Trump era. We know exactly what kind of man would lead it.
The damage for the GOP is irredeemable. Too many steps were taken in the direction of endorsement, support and guilty silence. Trump would not have been where he is were he a “third party candidate” or an independent. It was the GOP’s uproar that brought him here and now they wish to absolve themselves of him. It’s too late. The link between the two must never be forgotten and what all this shows is what petty party politics can lead to.
Make no mistake, this was all party politics. The lust for the White House lead the GOP to do anything to kick out a President whom they blame for everything under the sun and replace him with their own representative. Of course not all members of the GOP are Tea Party-likes, even those who are more serious and intelligent have kept too quiet in the face of such bigotry and madness. They are at fault at least to this extent.
We saw during this campaign’s duration. Prominent people of the GOP chose not to comment on the nomination or the support by their fellow party members, mostly because they feared that this would send a signal of the party not being cohesive and united in their cause. Who would want to be the guy that kills the GOP? Turns out it might be the guy they nominated, splintering the extremists from the moderates, the dumb from the thoughtful, yet all guilty of immoral gambling.
Some say that perhaps things would have been better if we had more reactions like that of Lindsay Graham, but that is just not so. We must not forget the details. Senator Graham would not endorse Trump and actually went against his nomination, but he did so in order to back Ted Cruz who although not as dangerous as Donald Trump, is hardly Presidential material. Ted Cruz. The man who was the unofficial leader of the Tea Party, which has arguably managed to steer the direction of the GOP ever since its inception. Go back to the GOP debates between their candidates and it is evident that once again their choices are nothing short of poor with the possible exception of John Kasich. And still, the GOP’s nominee has chosen a Tea Party member as his VP, Mike Pence. If the GOP is serious about cleansing itself of Donald Trump, it stands to reason to take Mike Pence along with him, since he is now too tainted, due to his support and campaign.
This is not about the Tea Party, that was only the beginning. This is about Trump who is the next step in the madness that spawned from that “movement”. The issue of the Tea Party is a different page in the GOP’s history but it ties to the present argument as it is what led them to nominating Trump. It is the mentality that capitalizes on wrong names, terms, and misguided ideology, empowering the very essence of that which they stand against.
That might be their legacy. That they destroyed themselves. We must allow it to happen. The Trump era came too close, and we’re not even in the clear yet.