Behold the cult marriage made in hell: party can’t win with Trump, can’t win without him 

When does the GOP declare the obvious – that Trump is the monumentally flawed cancer at the center, his and the party’s worst enemy?


Right, GOP top brass blames only the frickin’ base for the Trump disaster. Say what?

The exception to the historic rule, this mixed bag of a midterm, does boost one’s confidence in democratic elections, if not the overall trend lines towards more adult oversight. If motivated Democratic voters weren’t such a massive (majority) threat, would Rethuglicans hunt down every obscure election suppression abuse? Despite obstacles galore to blocking the “wrong citizens,” what the midterm taught above all is that the increasingly cornered and lawless minority party still can’t score enough runs. 

What Georgia, Arizona and Michigan prove (less so unevolved Wisconsin) is that fair elections, against the wave of indefensible Trump slander, remain the best, most legitimate way for the majority to rule. Trump didn’t just lose face but a good portion of the smartest rightwing support. That Hershel Walker in a midterm lost decisively in a red state, and the despicable Sen. Johnson barely won against a minority newcomer in a purple one, signal unresolvable contradictions and implosion, a slide pushed by the Trumpist descent. Wisconsin becomes the next turnaround state for Dems, so a good lesson in that regard. 

As telling, no hidden, top elite picked Walker, just one indictable reprobate with red-state primary leverage. And Warnock, having to win five elections in two years, won because Georgia voters choose his competence and good will over a joke opponent, not because remote Democrats controlled the election. Separating utter boobs from decent, if not inspired leaders is no fool’s errand, another distortion about elections pushed by cynical trolls. True, the sleaze plaguing politics alienates reluctant voters but that’s how democracies always work. Dem and centrist voters devastated “brain dead” Trumpers – scandalizing the deluded rightwing obsession that elevates presumptuous, unfit frauds, unelectable for offices they never held. 

Blame the base, not the buffoon

Soon after this latest Trump farce, wimpy Republicans hesitant to blast Trump blamed all party disasters not on the buffoon but on the base. As if you can separate sides of this cult marriage made in hell, as if it makes sense to simply blame uninformed, pliant know-nothings for following the Pied Piper. If they were better educated or knew more, would they have been so easy to sucker? After all, it was love (or desperation) at first sight between the rabid opportunist from Queens and an aggrieved, abused base crying for salvation because their lives sucked (or so they felt, making them ripe for scapegoats). 

The “Trump base” grew its party appeal by enticing inactive right voters to join their quest for a change messiah — wait for it, only to back the most criminal, least likely reformer anywhere. Trump lusts for attention, power and dollars in that order, and he’d ridicule any change that cramps his predatory style. Nor could he pull off the politics. But the Tea Party/Trump base was unshakeable: he must be the ticket because he sounded different. And they couldn’t abide a Democratic Party that didn’t sanctify all gun rights, shunned violent, civil uprisings, worked to spread the wealth (to all poor), and had the gall to respect science, expertise, vaccines and feather-weight masks when battling a virulent pandemic. However conventional are Democrats on overseas military and economic affairs, domestically they are the closest thing we have to a reform party for the majority and the less advantaged (like poor Trumpers). Bad attitude trumped self-interest. 

So now mediocrities like Senator Romney whine, “don’t judge the party leadership. Blame the Trump base for picking unelectable primary losers.” So much (again) for the delusion party top dogs dictate all choices, loading the electoral dice. What top Rethuglican thinks Trump a “stable genius” capable of sustaining, let alone restoring the party? How many have only contempt because he is contemptible – vain, stupid, self-absorbed, and the worst picker of advisers in history? Any party must be a team but that’s a concept utterly defied by Trump’s peculiar idea of ego stardom.

Likewise, PA’s “moderate” Sen. Toomey tossed off distortions that reveal little understanding of Trump’s clueless GA calamity, “We had a flawed candidate — that’s to put it mildly — and [that’s] completely the creation of Donald Trump. And we see how that ended.” Hardly completely, considering how unpopular is the Donald in the Peach State? He had help. The issue is how it all started, and is driven, not how it came to the surface in one election. Thus, to blame only “the base” as if IT ambushed party leaders (or FOX or sleazy operatives) is just the latest form of rightwing derangement. What about the lock between the base and the Trump’s criminal character, impulsive misjudgments and ignorant prejudices? 

Did this marriage made in hell just appear out of nowhere – or wasn’t the sneering, violent rhetoric exactly what Trump dished out to win over the brainwashed? When does the GOP declare the obvious – that Trump is the monumentally flawed cancer at the center, his and the party’s worst enemy? It takes no crystal ball to see that more of the same will produce the same electoral calamities – and with all those delightful indictments looming. 

A broken marriage but no divorce

Talk about congenital insularity. What about the perverse, entrenched rightwing bubble addicted to lying? What about decades of Gingrich-like excesses, fed by the latest, most bizarre Trump whackos, billionaires who hate taxes and government, and rank opportunists like Alex Jones, making (and losing) a bundle with propaganda, hate speech, and calumny. To isolate the base, even Trump voters, as if an outside quake unrelated to Rethuglican horrors is indefensible, a mark of a party about to implode. Why are any moderates loyal to a party veering towards renominating the worst president, criminality aside, on the face of the earth? Partners in a criminal enterprise become collaborators the longer they keep throwing coal on the fires. 

Who denies that Rethuglicans are stuck with the worst scenario: they can’t win nationally without a Trumpist coalition and they can’t avoid losing (and major schisms) with him? Not just that: Trump still and always insists on total loyalty from unelectable yahoos, so what impedes a destructive party split? Deny Trump the nomination, and he goes divisively third party, instantly dooming the Republican nominee and electing a slew of Democrats. What a marvelous, revolting development for a vicious, ineducable group of predators. What a model of my favorite law, that of unintended consequences. Trump was always an inside earthquake, only now the cracks are surfacing in earnest because of GOP cowardice. 

In short, only the ex-Republican Never Ever Trumpers have learned anything since 2015 when this vicious, novelty, media-controlling hack hijacked the party from experienced, vicious, run-of-the-mill hacks (or their enablers, billionaires, think tankers, and operatives). Trumpism is unprincipled, exposed Rethuglicanism without finesse, savvy or planning skills, thus his presidency failed across the board – AWOL on outsourcing, better taxes, or enlisting brainpower, while screwing up the pandemic, tariffs, foreign alliances, and immigration. In the greatest campaign lie in American history, Trump drained zero swamps, in fact adding higher criminal walls and a fumbling, moronic crew that redefined what D.C, swamp means, big-time. 

Is this a record that remaining adult Rethuglicans don’t have to exile from their party ASAP, before the walls come down on them and on the base besieged with bad leadership for years – the very grievance that ignited the entire morass. This is hardly a defense of the backward Trump base, but let’s at least distinguish between the reckless pigheaded criminal user from the ignorant, bullheaded abused who have yet to learn from Trump’s and their own voting failures. That redefines political ignorance as Trump did the swamp. Anyone who compares this GOP catastrophe from the problems besetting Democrats lives in another universe. 


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For over a decade, Robert S. Becker's independent, rebel-rousing essays on politics and culture analyze overall trends, history, implications, messaging and frameworks. He has been published widely, aside from Nation of Change and RSN, with extensive credits from OpEdNews (as senior editor), Alternet, Salon, Truthdig, Smirking Chimp, Dandelion Salad, Beyond Chron, and the SF Chronicle. Educated at Rutgers College, N.J. (B.A. English) and U.C. Berkeley (Ph.D. English), Becker left university teaching (Northwestern, then U. Chicago) for business, founding SOTA Industries, a top American high end audio company he ran from '80 to '92. From '92-02, he was an anti-gravel mining activist while doing marketing, business and writing consulting. Since then, he seeks out insight, even wit in the shadows, without ideology or righteousness across the current mayhem of American politics.