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Axar.az presents the article "He that troubleth his own house" by John Samuel Tieman.
Donald Trump left office on the 20th of January. His reputation was badly damaged for many reasons. Two impeachments, an insurrection, the incompetent handling of the Covid crisis, generally top the list. You would think that this should kill a political career. However, events suggest that Donald Trump now owns the Republican Party.
Mitt Romney recently was booed as he spoke to Republicans in Utah. Romney is a Republican senator from that very state. He was a governor. He was also the Republican nominee for president in 2012. His state's Republican Party narrowly voted against a resolution to censure Romney. Why do they hate him? Romney has consistently criticized Pres. Trump. He voted to impeach the president. Trump calls Romney a “stone-cold loser”.
Liz Cheney represents Wyoming in the House Of Representatives. She is the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, and one of the most conservative Republicans in Congress Her criticism of Trump is unrelenting, and, because of that, Cheney may lose a key position in Republican leadership. She also may ultimately lose her seat in the House. Trump calls Cheney a “fool”.
A Republican senator is booed by Republicans? A Republican representative may be ousted by her own party? How does this happen?
This is not about philosophy or policy. This is about reality. The Republican Party is redefining itself. Its foundation now is not an adherence to a shared ideology out of which grows shared policies. Its foundation now is adherence to a cult of personality out of which grows shared delusions.
There are dozens of these shared delusions among Trump's followers. Paedophiles run the government, and these same paedophiles drink the blood of children. Covid is a hoax. Pres. Obama was born in Kenya. Mexicans are “rapists”. Islam is all about terrorism, which is why we need a “Muslim ban”.
There is one delusion, above all others, that has become the Republican litmus test, the delusional belief that Donald Trump won the 2020 election. How does this delusion appear in practice? Here's just one example. Months after Pres. Biden took office, in Arizona, a bizarre conspiracy theory that has forced a recount of votes cast in the last presidential election. Republicans argue that Trump secretly watermarked mail-in ballots before the election, so he can have evidence of widespread Democratic voter fraud. This is delusional for many reasons. For one, ballots aren't national. They are produced locally. For another, there are no watermarks. Besides, even if all of Arizona's votes were taken from Biden and given to Trump, this would not change the national outcome of the election. Few in Republican leadership have denounced this waste of time and money.
Republicans should be asking about reality-based problems. Here are just two questions they should be asking. Why did Trump lose his 2016 election by 3 million popular votes, then by 7 million popular votes in 2020? Why is the Republican Party increasingly becoming a regional party rather than a national one?
Trump owns the Republican Party. Traditional leaders like Romney and Cheney, normal Republicans, are on their way out. There have always been divisions in political parties. The problem here is that the Republican Party is divided not over policy, but over reality. A party divided over policy still has a functional basis in the real world. One faction may win, the other may lose, but the party is still grounded in a world that exists. The Trump faction has taken over the Republican Party. But upon what is this take over based? Conspiracy theories? Blood drinking paedophiles that rule the land? A delusion that Trump won his last election? To borrow from the Good Book, when folks believe in nothing more substantial than the air, eventually they “shall inherit the wind”.
2021.05.07 / 15:57
John Samuel Tieman