Sometime in the not too distant past a new term entered American lexicon; RINO. Google the word RINO and the following definition appears:
The definition of RINO is instructive in today’s political environment. It helps define the current state of the Republican Party and more specifically the meteoric rise of Donald Trump in the Party’s presidential nominating process.
There is significant discontent within the Republican Party, especially by those who consider themselves conservative. This discontent emanates not only from the direction the Country is travelling and the fact that conservatives feel marginalized, but also by the Republican Party’s inept response to the Progressive agenda associated with the modern Democratic Party.
President George W Bush’s policies clearly defined him as a RINO. George W. Bush was no fiscal conservative, not only increasing deficit spending, but also supporting fiscal policies that fed into crony capitalism. As a result of America’s discontent with the state of the economy and the ill-advised war in Iraq, Americans voted for the charm of Hope and Change and elected a radical Leftist, Barack Obama, president.
The change Obama brought to Washington quickly became unpopular, not only with conservatives, but also more moderate Americans. Two years after his election, America sent a clear message to Washington giving Republicans an historic majority in Congress, as well as significant gains at the state level. These gains can in art be attributed to the grassroots efforts of the Tea Party.
As unpopular as Barack Obama’s presidency had become, he was able to secure a second term. Some of the blame for Obama’s reelection rests with the Republican Party’s inept political strategies and disjointed policies.
The discontent among conservatives and Republicans continued with the 2014 midterm elections. Once again Republicans saw huge gains, now controlling both houses of Congress and making further advances in statewide elections. This Republican victory should have resulted in a legislative agenda that promoting the will of more conservative Americans. Instead, Republicans squandered the advantage. Conservatives saw no perceptible change in the Country’s direction. This, in a nutshell, explains discontent that has morphed into outright anger for many Republicans.
Shortly after the 2014 midterm elections, the Republican Party’s power elite decided to anoint one of its own, Jeb Bush, as the candidate of choice. A massive war chest was collected that the Party hoped would lead to Jeb Bush’s nomination (coronation?). The rank and file would have none of this. Bush’s rejection was total. The people have spoken and that is a good thing.
As is often the case when people feel marginalized, currently the case amongst many in the Republican Party, emotions overtake common sense. A large minority in the Republican Party are exhibiting this emotional response by supporting Donald Trump. Why understandable, this reaction will not promote the policies or values desired by conservatives.
Donald Trump has been a master at understanding and taking advantage of Republican anger. He in fact may become the Party’s nominee. This troubles to this Blogger given Trump’s history, irrespective of than contemporary words. History shows Trump’s disdain for core conservative beliefs on both economic and social issues. That history shows a man who used crony-capitalism and litigation to achieve success in business. It shows a man who was more likely to support Progressive policies, rather than the Constitution. It seems likely that Trump’s supposed conversion in the past year has been made for personal gain, rather than seeing the light. Finally, it is difficult to believe that if elected president, Trump would not revert back to the same philosophies that made him successful in the business world.
Trump’s often repeated claim is that he will “make America great again”. Yet there is no substance behind this claim. In fact, a true conservative would instead say that government can’t make a country great. Only the People can make a country great. In this respect Trump’s battle cry sounds eerily similar to Obama’s “Hope and Change” message of eight years ago.
It is ironic that much of the anger currently being exhibited by Republicans at their party is the result of the power elite and RINOS who run the Party. While Donald Trump is certainly an outsider as it relates to the Republican Party, he is a life-long member of the power elite and certainly the most famous contemporary RINO.
Donald Trump’s rise to power in the current primaries also emanates from the Party being fractured with too many candidates splitting the anti-Trump vote. For many of us the candidate we would like to see nominated is already out of the race. It is now crunch time and we are down to two realistic choices; Donald Trump or Ted Cruz. While Ted Cruz is not without warts, he is the last man standing if the Republican Party wants to run a conservative against Hillary Clinton. That makes the choice easy for this Blogger.