Sunday, September 10, 2017


"Donald Trump is not a Republican" is raidly becoming conventional wisdom, as expressed in this analysis by Peter Baker of The New York Times:
Bound to No Party, Trump Upends 150 Years of Two-Party Rule

... Although elected as a Republican last year, Mr. Trump has shown in the nearly eight months in office that he is, in many ways, the first independent to hold the presidency since the advent of the current two-party system around the time of the Civil War.

In recent weeks, he has quarreled more with fellow Republicans than with the opposition, blasting congressional leaders on Twitter, ousting former party officials in his White House, embracing primary challenges to incumbent lawmakers who defied him and blaming Republican figures for not advancing his policy agenda. On Friday, he addressed discontent about his approach with a Twitter post that started, “Republicans, sorry,” as if he were not one of them, and said party leaders had a “death wish.”
What Baker doesn't mention is that that series of Friday tweets chided Republicans for failing to repeal and replace Obamacare -- a very Republican goal -- and then went on to demand quick work on Trump's very Republican tax agenda:

The press regularly sees right-wing threats to traditional partisanship where there's really no threat at all. Remember the Tea Party?

Here's a March 2010 Reuters story on the Tea Party:
... Tea Partiers insist that they are not beholden to the GOP and warn that Republican candidates counting on an endorsement from them in November may well be disappointed....

“I used to be a dyed-in-the-wool Republican. Now if we have a Republican lined up to come to our meetings, I don’t even want to go,” said Nate Friedl, 41, a member of the Rock River Patriots, a Tea Party group in southern Wisconsin.
The Tea Party wasn't really an independent movement -- it was a Republican movement. But it was regularly described as a movement that put both parties on notice.

In 2014, Rand Paul was dubbed "the most interesting man in politics" and portrayed as a new-style post-ideology Republican:

Except on a couple of issues, Paul is a rubber-stamp wingnut. He has a 95% lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union. In 2016, it was reported that 64 senators are more likely than Paul to co-sponsor a bill introduced by a senator from the other party. Paul votes with President Trump 87.2% of the time.

The Tea Party, the Paul family, and Trump have changed the Republican Party, but Republicanism endures -- and they're all still a part of it.

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