Donald Trump’s rise from a joke candidate to the Republican party’s presidential nominee has been one of the most “interesting” processes we’ve seen in modern political history. On one hand, he set a record for the number of votes received by any Republican candidate in history. On the other hand, more people actually voted against him than for him, and he’s pushed the GOP to the verge of total collapse.
It really has been rather remarkable to see someone become a presidential nominee while simultaneously being the most popular and hated candidate in the party.
While the Republican party itself will obviously back him and claim that they hope he becomes our next president — we all know that’s not really true. It’s actually been kind of funny to sit back and watch Republicans force themselves to act as if they’re glad Donald Trump is the party’s candidate.
However, beyond the thinly veiled “party unity,” some Republicans have flat-out refused to endorse Trump — while others have actually left the party altogether.
Take for instance lifelong Republican Chris Ladd who resigned from his position as a precinct committeeman for the York Township Republican Organization in a brilliant letter where he absolutely trashed what the GOP has become.
Normally this wouldn’t be something I’d write about considering this is just one random Republican resigning from a conservative organization most people have probably never heard of. However, this letter is absolutely amazing. Here are a few excerpts:
We come together in political parties to magnify our influence. An organized representative institution can give weight to our will in ways we could not accomplish on our own. Working with others gives us power, but at the cost of constant, calculated compromise. No two people will agree on everything. There is no moral purity in politics.
At the national level, the delusions necessary to sustain our Cold War coalition were becoming dangerous long before Donald Trump arrived. From tax policy to climate change, we have found ourselves less at odds with philosophical rivals than with the fundamentals of math, science and objective reality.
The Iraq War, the financial meltdown, the utter failure of supply-side theory, climate denial, and our strange pursuit of theocratic legislation have all been troubling. Yet it seemed that America’s party of commerce, trade, and pragmatism might still have time to sober up. Remaining engaged in the party implied a contribution to that renaissance, an investment in hope. Donald Trump has put an end to that hope.
From his fairy-tale wall to his schoolyard bullying and his flirtation with violent racists, Donald Trump offers America a singular narrative – a tale of cowards. Fearful people, convinced of our inadequacy, trembling before a world alight with imaginary threats, crave a demagogue. Neither party has ever elevated to this level a more toxic figure, one that calls forth the darkest elements of our national character.
Trump is not merely a poor candidate, but an indictment of our character. Preserving a party is not a morally defensible goal if that party has lost its legitimacy.
Our leaders’ compromise preserves their personal capital at our collective cost. Their refusal to dissent robs all Republicans of moral cover. Evasion and cowardice has prevailed over conscience. We are now, and shall indefinitely remain, the Party of Donald Trump.
I will not contribute my name, my work, or my character to an utterly indefensible cause. No sensible adult demands moral purity from a political party, but conscience is meaningless without constraints. A party willing to lend its collective capital to Donald Trump has entered a compromise beyond any credible threshold of legitimacy. There is no redemption in being one of the “good Nazis.”
I’ve seen a lot of people write things about the GOP, Donald Trump and how the Republican party is essentially “dead,” and this is probably one of the best summaries of the entire Trump situation and what it means for the party. Reading Ladd’s words, you could feel the frustration, anger and disgust that’s clearly been building inside of him for decades as he’s witnessed his party transform into essentially nothing more than a hate group.
While I feel sorry for the few rational Republicans who are still left, I don’t feel sorry at all for what’s happened to the GOP, because they did it to themselves. After decades of pandering to racism, bigotry and ignorance — while fueling their party with fear, paranoia and hate — it was only a matter of time before the someone like Donald Trump, and those supporting him, took over the Republican party.
It’s like I’ve said before, it’s time sane Republicans realize that they no longer have a political party.
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