I lied. Not intentionally, but it still needs correcting.
Soon after the 2020 election, I stated here that, even though I’d voted for Donald Trump twice, I would not again. Yes, I had my reasons, but I need to add a qualifier. If Trump ends up on the ballot again (which I think is a lousy idea; he is too divisive a force to ever unite the disheveled Republicans) I will certainly vote for him over anybody with a D after their name.
However, if the Republicans convince themselves that they can persuade a bunch of Biden voters and Never Trump ‘Republicans’ to jump ship and win with Trump in 2024, I’ll think they’ve drunk the Kool-Aid. We can hope that Biden’s racial warfare, wide-open borders, ruined energy industries, rioting in the streets and the rest of the devastation he’ll pile on in the next three years will convince people that red is better. But betting on Trump again would be folly.
The looming battle for Republicans is to unite their own party. I’d love to be surprised by a highly unlikely victory on that front! I don’t see how a party survives without a more cohesive stance than they’ve displayed over the last ten years.
Remember the old story about having to get a mule’s attention with a 2x4 before you can teach him anything? The Republican elephant is, apparently, just as dense. There are countless “conservative” publications, PACs and influential individuals who were virulent Never-Trumpers and will become anti-anyone else who doesn’t fit their blue-bubble, limp politics. If we in flyover country want a voice, they are going to have to hear us roar.
I’ve long scolded the Republican party for being too chivalrous and, rather than offend, forming a circular firing squad to politely eliminate themselves before the brass-knuckled other party could do it to them.
Republicans need to learn from the unprincipled street gang who beat us. We need to learn to stand together rather than splitting up into barroom brawlers and ruffle-cuffed snivelers. We need to stand shoulder-to-shoulder and, if the brass knucks feel tawdry, pull some velvet gloves on over them and get the damned job done.
Donald Trump was unwilling to don the velvet and he offended many of those who were content with the actual job he was doing. Others, of course, found his street-fighter persona invigorating, but you see where that got us.
Republicans also need to learn from Democrats to take our family feuds behind closed doors while presenting a united front (rather than a stage full of 17 candidates, for the luvvapete.)
Most people are not political junkies (hard as it is for us junkies to imagine) and only pay attention to politics once every four years. While the political addicts among us want to know every nuance of every utterance, a lot of people have other calls on their attention (you know, jobs, kids, etc.) Give them a simple choice in the next election: Wrong or Right.