Many in the United States are looking at the 2021 version of the Grand Old Party (GOP) and wondering 'What happened?' Back in 2016, there seemed to be a fight for the soul of the party; a fight that was clearly won.
Now, as people both inside and outside the party look at what has become of the GOP, they have trouble recognizing what are the ideals that this group of people stand for.
Taking a good look at what are their current core principles compared to the GOP of the past will help in deciding on potential new names for the party.
Option: The Party of Trump
The most clear option would be to rename the GOP as The Party of Trump. This became clear as day during the 2020 Presidential Election when the GOP had to put out its platform and all they could declare was that the party "has and will continue to enthusiastically support the president's America-first agenda."
Such a public statement that the party no longer had its own identity, but was following the standards set forth by the President representing their party was a clear sign to many that the party was officially gone.
Trump supporters love to throw around a term called Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS). To many, the TDS stands for Trump Demagogue Syndrome instead as his supporters seem more akin to cult members than a political party.
Option: Nativists of the United States
At times, watching the Republican Party in the last five years has reminded people of the film Gangs of New York. There has been fearmongering about immigrants, xenophobia, and an increase in hateful rhetoric.
The results have been obvious where normal American citizens used to feel outrage about the safety and health of children - and not just American children - but all children. Suddenly, as children began dying in the care of U.S. Border and Customs, something that had not happened in a decade, we heard the right come out with acceptance. No longer did dying children concern them, so long as they were immigrant children.
When the Covid-19 pandemic reached our shores, the GOP openly decided to ignore its scientific name and instead call it the 'China Virus.' That open racism has led to an increase in hate crimes against Asian American citizens.
The party has also made their disagreement with social justice protests widely known - clearly believing that Due Process Rights should not necessarily exist for repeat offenders of the laws of this country.
Recently, members of the GOP came out with the idea of forming a hard-right group with a seven-page mission statement that included: "America is a nation with a border, and a culture, strengthened by a common respect for uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions," the document said in a section outlining its views on immigration.
When this kind of white supremacist language can be publicly released by members of one party, that party clearly has a nativist problem. Even former President George W. Bush described the modern-day GOP as “isolationist, protectionist, and to a certain extent, nativist” in a recent interview.
Option: The G.O. ME Party
Has any party become the party of 'Me' more so than the Republican Party? For a party that claims to be full of patriots, they sure do take so many actions for the good of themselves over the good of the nation as a whole.
The first example has to be on taxes. Wanting lower taxes is not necessarily a bad thing. But when those lower tax rates come before cutting spending, that leads to higher deficits and more debt that the nation has to pay for. But the current GOP only cares about what is best for themselves, personally, and creates tax policies that clearly hurt the country as a whole.
Next, is this idea of personal freedom. When members of the conservative party stormed state Capitols at the urging of the leader of their party, they were willing to put the lives of police at risk of a deadly virus by violating social distance and mask guidelines just to foment their own anger. Their own desire to not wear a mask or to pretend society should go on as normal as 550,000 of their fellow citizens died of the virus was both selfish and idiotic. If there is a party that cares less for their fellow citizens than the current version of the GOP, one would be hard-pressed to find it.
Option: The Partisan Outrage Party (POP)
One could almost write a book about all the things that cause the conservatives in the country to have outrage when a Democrat is in charge, but that they brush off when their own party has power.
Some recent examples:
- Mitch McConnell telling businesses to stay out of politics when they made public statements pertaining to Georgia's new law restricting voting. Hey Mitch, perhaps you want to have a talk with the MyPillow guy.
- On cancel culture, apparently the right seems to be ignorant that censure of people that voted to impeach Trump is a form of cancel culture. Or that calls to smash your Keurig, burn your Nikes, don't watch the NFL, NBA, MLB, or NASCAR, stop drinking Coke or Starbucks are also forms of cancel culture they have been promoting for years.
- Obama and golf. When you used to get all in a tizzy about how much golf a Democrat played and then when your own leader smashes the total amount, at his own properties where he can also break the Emoluments Clause to earn money from his position, that kind of hypocrisy is just comical.
- As the video will show below pertaining to the conservative propaganda network Fox News, North Korea is a great example of some partisan outrage and then some serious boot licking.
The Party of Gullibility
One thing that has come from Trumpism is that his followers seems to live in their own media bubble, which in turn leads to them pretty much living in an alternate reality free of facts.
This was never more apparent than the "Big Lie' about election fraud. That some 70% of the GOP could believe that Joe Biden orchestrated multiple state fraud, convincing GOP government officials, Bill Barr, the FBI, and local election workers to swing the election for him - all from the comforts of his basement since he didn't get out and campaign much - has to be a level of gullibility never seen before in the nation.
That people would feel the need to 'Liberate Michigan!' or 'Liberate Virginia!' during a dangerous pandemic clearly showed that stupid people could be motivated to endanger government officials. Should anyone have really been surprised by the Capitol insurrection after the test runs that were so successful in April at the state level?
What Trumpism really showed was how susceptible to misinformation and compelled to terrorist action those in the GOP truly are. It's a reason that 81 million Americans chose new leadership, even leadership we know comes with the risks of age. No one sees Biden using such propaganda and misinformation to attack his own government from within - thus helping our enemies.
The Gaslighting Party
So many examples of Republicans gaslighting or trying to whitewash recent history. In one very recent example, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) decided to fabricate meanings to speeches made by minority Congresswomen.
"We are going to ensure every voter knows Democrats want to Defund the Police. Whether it's Rashida Tlaib demanding an end to policing and incarceration, or Maxine Waters encouraging rioters to engage in violence, Democrats can't be trusted to stand with law enforcement and keep Americans safe," NRCC spokesman Michael McAdams charged.
Tlaib noting that she wants to end RACISM in policing, and not policing, is a bold leap for Republicans who fail at listening.
With regards to comments from Maxine Waters, perhaps a dictionary lesson about the definition of the word confrontation is necessary.
tending to deal with situations in an aggressive way; hostile or argumentative.
Aggressive, hostile, argumentative - which of these is outright violent? Straight up gaslighting to automatically assume she meant violence when the word has many meanings that could be peaceful.
And everyone's favorite insurrectionist, Ted Cruz, had a wonderful gaslighting moment when he declared that his party did not engage in court packing with the decisions to block Garland and then rush through Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
Followed very closely by House Minority Leader and spineless moron, Kevin McCarthy, walking back Trump's knowledge of what was happening at the Capitol on January 6. Either the case was that he knew or that his administration was so inept that it could not recognize a violent attack of its own Capitol. I'd think he'd rather go with he knew than a Republican was too inept to run the government and protect its citizens from violence if I was him.
There are plenty of good options for a rebranding of the GOP. Certainly, the party once known as the Party of Lincoln has perished. There are some good potential names, but I'm sure there are others that people could come up with and feel free to put them in the comments.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
Leslie McCowen from Cape Cod, USA on April 22, 2021:
I think of them as the Gross Old Perverts. Look at the members in the senate.....my god.
It’s the 21st century, we need 21st century thinking.
That goes for dems, too, but the old ones there seem more open to new ideas.
No more trickle down. No more profits uber alles. No more money is our god. No more 20th century solutions.
A new era dawns.
Get with it, or get lost. Literally,