The Arizona Senate primary has become a microcosm for everything that is wrong with the GOP today.
Let’s pause there. What’s funny is that everyone is sure they know what I’m going to say. I’m guessing 40% think it’s going to be one thing. I’m guessing 40% think it’s going to be the opposite. They’re all wrong. The 20% who, like me, actually see what is wrong, are going to enjoy the rest of this article. The 80% will hate it.
On the one side of the of the Arizona Republican primary you have Jeff Flake, the junior incumbent Senator who is backed by establishment money. Why? Because he’s not very conservative. He votes for a few bills here and there in the last 2 years of his term to get his “A” ratings from meaningless “conservative” groups. He’s really an open borders, big government, tax and spend (or borrow and spend which is even worse), establishment liberal, just like the senior senator from his state, John McCain.
On the other side you have Dr. Kelli Ward, who previously ran in an unsuccessful bid to unseat McCain last year. During her failed campaign she hitched her wagon to the Trump Train and doesn’t seem to have backed off from that position.
The GOP has always been factionalized, even since the Civil War. It was originally a coalition party formed around a single common principle: abolishing slavery. Well, they got that done early on, and then continued to until the freed slaves and their descendent were given the same rights as all men. Then it was about keeping government limited.
The GOP has been kind of lost since Coolidge.
It’s always been factionalized, but now the factions have descended into two major camps. You have your establishment “Never Trump” types on the one side who love Jeff Flake. You have your Bill Kristols and Rick Wilsons and Rubio Battalions… excuse me, “Reagan Battalions” who think the peons shouldn’t decide things, only the elites should.
We do, proudly! pic.twitter.com/ijzb2IJ90t
— Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) August 23, 2017
Then you have your Trumpers who think Trump can do no wrong, and neither can anyone who supports him. All Dr. Ward has to do to garner the support of the Trump faction of the GOP is praise Trump endlessly. This may seem like a good play, however Trump’s popularity seems to be waning, and his coat tails may not get her the nomination over the incumbent Flake.
Meanwhile, you have a growing number of people who are still fed up with the do-nothing establishment, yet see Trump for what he is, a bloviating con man who never stops campaigning because he has no concept of how to govern. He has done nothing to push forward a full repeal of Obamacare, little on border security and immigration outside of executive orders, and will likely fail on meaningful tax reform.
This is what the GOP has become: Useless elites who are actually Democrats in all but name, and frothing Trump fans who have no core principles, but instead change with whatever their leader says on any given day.
I left the GOP when Trump was elected, knowing that, if he were elected, we were going to see the nightmare we’re seeing now. Many others felt the same as I did. Many felt homeless. Many still do.
Personally, I’ve thrown in with the Federalist Party, because the Grand Old Party is old, but not so grand any more. It’s become a mob scene, and doesn’t truly have any principle behind it anymore. The politicians and most of the pundits who make their living off of the GOP won’t want to accept the fact that the Republican Party is dying, but the sooner the rank and file members do, the sooner we’ll actually be able to stop choosing between the elites and the lunatics.