The future of the Republican Party: Ryan or Trump

The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson argues it’s Trump.  Of course, it’s more complicated than that, but this conclusion is grounded in reality:

Donald Trump’s tax plan, meanwhile, is like a quantum particle, flickering in and out of existence. He proposed a major tax cut for the rich, walked it back on television, and later walked back the walk back, without any evident impact on his poll numbers.

Voters don’t seem to care about Trump’s tax plan. Instead, they thrill to his negative comments about minorities, like Muslims and Mexicans, and his promises to bring back the 1950s manufacturing economy through brute will and international trade wars. The feeling that America’s whites are losing predictssupport for Trump two- to three-times more than feelings of economic anxiety (although these feelings are certainly intertwined).

The Republican Party’s new center of gravity is a white middle-class demographic that doesn’t care about Laffer’s napkins or Ryan’s budgets. The White American Middle, the pillar of GOP support, is an anxious mess throwing its lot behind a charismatic demagogue promising to solve all their problems with walls, deportations, trade wars, and religious bans…

Ryan is now so desperate to pass his budget, along with the massive tax cut that his own voters now repeatedly say they don’t want, that he is willing to support an inexhaustible fount of bilious bigotry to do so. [emphasis mine]

There’s also some good stuff in here about Reagan and Jack Kemp, but I think that conclusion is really the key.


About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

One Response to The future of the Republican Party: Ryan or Trump

  1. rgbact says:

    Future is Trump? Right. Lets talk come December. Any strategy that doesn’t win, doesn’t have much of a future. Paul Ryan’s actually been elected to something. So far, Trump’s the future of Republicans about as much as Bernie Sanders is the future of Democrats.

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