Friday, November 10, 2017

The GOP in Alabama and Nationwide

The Alabama Political Reporter has published a good piece by Josh Moon in which he asks, referring to Roy Moore, how low the Alabama Republican Party is going to sink. Josh Moon draws a distinction between the Alabama GOP and the party nationwide, and it's true that some Republican politicians outside of Alabama have called upon Moore to resign from the special election for US Senator on December 12, and that no Republican politicians from inside Alabama have done so. Still, the parallels between the disastrous state of things in Republican-led Alabama on the one hand, and the Trump administration and the response of most Republican politicians nationwide to Trump, are striking. Moon asks:

"What’s it going to take before you realize that your family values, my-sin-is-better-than-your-sin, conservative voting approach has produced a state government filled with lying, cheating, sexually assaulting, money-grubbing criminals who have embarrassed us countless times, and on top of everything, mismanaged the hell out of this place?"

That's Moon talking about Alabama, but how many words would you have to change before it's a perfectly legitimate question to ask of Republicans in general, and of their response to the Trump administration in particular? One, at the most, I think.

That's the very same Trump administration whose Attorney General is Jeff Sessions, recently US Senator from Alabama, whose vacated seat Moore and Doug are Jones set to contest on Dec 12, unless Moore withdraws from the race over revelations of sexual misconduct with girls as young as 14 years old.

It seems clear to me that the bottom for the GOP is not going to be determined by ethics, but by poll numbers. There's hardly any leadership left in the party: they just keep following the crazy right-wing fringe of their base further and further down into a sewer of insanity. When -- not if -- the GOP and their polling numbers shrink enough, one of two things is bound to happen: either 1) their leadership will made a profound change and lead again, and say no the right-wing fringe, and no to accepting horrible behavior as long as the perpetrator gets elected, or 2) they will simply cease to be a significant factor in US politics, leaving the Democrats in firm control and the Greens and the Libertarians to scrap over the #2 spot. The most significant question is how much suffering the GOP will cause in the meantime. Assuming that 3) doesn't happen, that they don't literally kill off the entire human race.

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