The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

The Question of Motive

Posted on | February 11, 2021 | Comments Off on The Question of Motive

Ryan Williams, president of the Claremont Institute, examines the motives of Republicans who support impeachment 2.0:

They hope this impeachment will cast Trump into the outer darkness and they can get back to normal politics. But a dishonest traditional media, aided and abetted by social media giants acting as the elect arbiters of “true” political information, has helped our political establishment maneuver America into an intractable position on impeachment. North of 40% of actual American voters consider the forces arrayed against Trump as fundamentally dishonest. Trust and respect, once lost, are hard to recover. The elite simply has no reputational capital in reserve to conduct a serious political exile of a president who just received 74+ million votes.

(Hat-tip: Instapundit.) Trump never could have been elected in 2016 if the “normal politics” of the GOP did not yield such abysmal failures as, e.g., the hopelessly doomed 2008 John McCain presidential campaign and the misguided House speakership of Paul Ryan. And it must be said that many “conservative” pundits failed to appreciate the potential for a populist uprising against the GOP Establishment. Trump elicited support from people who never would have voted for any of the Republican candidates preferred by the establishment. These were voters who were sick and tired of being sick and tired, and whatever else you say about Trump, you must give him credit for inspiring hope in Americans who had lost hope in the political system. As easy as it is to recite Trump’s flaws, what he represented to disillusioned voters was a willingness to fight back against the decadent elite of both parties.

Establishment Republicans hate Trump because he spoiled their polite little clubhouse, where insiders got money and power by doing the bidding of their corporate donors. A return to “normal politics” is only possible for the GOP Establishment if they purge Trump — which will also mean, necessarily, telling his 74 million voters to go away. But how can politicians get money and power without votes? That’s the real puzzle, but these “Never Trump” Republicans don’t seem to care. They would rather be part of a permanent minority than to let those rowdy populists have any influence inside the “Big Tent.”



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