Republicans

Trump’s synthesis [UPDATED]

Featured image In the run-up to this year’s election, when I thought Hillary Clinton would win, I speculated about what a post-Trump GOP would look like. It seemed to me that the Party might settle on a synthesis that mixed two doses of traditional conservatism with one dose of Trumpianism. Based on Trump’s early moves, especially his appointments, it looks like this might be the formula. Except I’m not sure about the »

Can Trump deliver to his base on economics?

Featured image Donald Trump cracked the Democrats’ “blue wall” by narrowly winning Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. He accomplished this by attracting non-upscale white voters. He also took advantage, it seems, of lack of enthusiasm for Hillary Clinton among black voters in cities such as Philadelphia, Detroit, and Milwaukee. Has Trump thereby transformed the electoral landscape? The answer probably depends on the extent to which his policies improve, or will be perceived as »

Will the GOP control all three branches?

Featured image The House is a done deal. The Senate is very likely to be in Republican hands. And now, Trump has a considerably better than even chance of winning the presidency. If the GOP does control all three branches, and if Trump is able to work with congressional Republicans, we might actually see real change. Keep this in mind too: Although the out-of-power party tends to do very well in off-year »

The future of Paul Ryan’s speakership

Featured image The Washington Post claims that Speaker Paul Ryan “is on the verge of a reckoning with House conservatives that threatens to end his speakership and extinguish his future as a national political leader.” Post reporters Kelsey Snell and Mike DeBonis say that, given the likelihood of an enhanced presence of Democrats in the new House, it might take less than one-third of the 40-member House Freedom Caucus to end Ryan’s »

The post-Trump GOP

Featured image Unlike Steve, I’m convinced that, unfortunately, Hillary Clinton will win this election. Assuming she does, and that the race isn’t very close, what will happen to Trumpism? To answer this question we must identify Trumpism’s main characteristics. In my view, there are five: (1) the unbridled egotism of its leader and his whiff of authoritarianism; (2) gratuitous nastiness; (3) a strong stance against illegal immigration; (4) intense skepticism about the »

Trump unshackled

Featured image Last week, Donald Trump proclaimed that “the shackles have been taken off me.” He wasn’t kidding. Unshackled, Trump has responded affirmatively to cries of “lock [Hillary]’ up” (the shackled Trump used to respond “defeat her”). He has attacked the physical appearance of a woman who accused him of sexual touching. And he claims that such allegations are part — not just of collaboration with Democrats and the media, which is »

What now?

Featured image The Trump campaign is bleeding profusely from the wound of his Access Hollywood video. Carly Fiorina and John McCain are among the prominent Republicans who have withdrawn their support. There are also calls for Trump to step down as the Republican nominee. Andy McCarthy is among those urging this. Trump, though, has said he will never stand aside. Conceivably, he will relent, but the choke artist seems determined to hang »

Escapism anyone? A look at 2020

Featured image Assuming that Donald Trump loses this year’s presidential race, who is likely to be the GOP nominee in 2020? The FiveThirtyEight crew takes a stab at this question (as well as the Democrats’ side of the equation). The discussion is too snarky and anti-Republican for my taste, but worthwhile nonetheless. Here (in no special order) are the six Republicans I consider most likely to be the nominee in four year: »

GOP silent on AFFH, as Democrats target House seats in wealthy suburbs

Featured image The conventional wisdom holds that Republicans will maintain control of the House even if Donald Trump loses the presidential election decisively. However, most of those who subscribe to this view believe that the Democrats have some hope of taking the House. How might the Democrats accomplish this? According to the New York Times, the plan is to target seats held by Republicans in affluent suburbs of big cities. The Times »

Will Trumpism survive a Trump defeat?

Featured image Jonathan Tobin takes up the question at Commentary. He defines Trumpism as “isolationism, protectionism, and populist blood and soil nativism.” Tobin answers his question this way: Though Trumpism without Trump would be a very different and less potent movement, it is a mistake to think even a landslide defeat for the Republicans will guarantee that it can resume its past stance as a supporter of a strong America on the »

How the GOP feeds the PC beast

Featured image John Fund reports that congressional Republicans increased the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights with a very generous budget increase last year. Fund takes up the matter in the NR column “How Republicans feed the beast of political correctness.” OCR is perhaps the most left-wing office in the federal bureaucracy. Bankrolling it that way Congress did was an egregious error (for which they were rewarded with the transgender guidance). »

Reagan Without Nostalgia

Featured image I’m away at a student conference all week with the Intercollegiate Studies Institute so my postings here are pretty light as the conference schedule is very full, but anyone who is interested in helping balance the rot of “higher” education ought to support ISI. I did break away yesterday long enough to go on the Seth Leibsohn show to talk with Seth and his sidekick Chris Buskirk about how Reagan is »

Back to the Future?

Featured image From the Republican convention: Republican tariffs and immigration restrictions account largely for American wages being more than in any other country. Not only are our wages higher than in any other land, but American standards of living are far higher, hours of labor shorter and working conditions better than in any other nation. The object of a tariff is to benefit and protect our workingmen, from the lower wages, longer »

Should the GOP field keep its pledge to support the nominee?

Featured image Kevin Williamson argues that it is “absolutely the right thing to do” for Republican presidential aspirants to break their pledge to support the Republican nominee now that Trump seems to have the nomination locked up. In Williamson’s view, taking the pledge was a mistake in judgment and, as such, can be forgiven. Supporting Trump, by contrast, would be an unforgivable breach of honor. I see it differently. The promise to »

Good news from North Carolina

Featured image Two results from yesterday’s North Carolina congressional primaries are worthy of note. First, Rep. Renee Ellmers, who has been a huge disappointment to conservatives, will not return to Congress next year. She was crushed by conservative Rep. George Holding in North Carolina’s 2nd district. Ellmers, by the way, was one of the very few members of Congress who endorsed Donald Trump when the GOP presidential race was still in doubt. »

The dilemma Trump poses

Featured image Michael Gerson’s latest column attacking Donald Trump bemoans the fact that Marco Rubio has endorsed the tycoon and the prospect that Paul Ryan soon may do so. More on that later. The passage from Gerson that caught my eye is this one: Here is the problem in sum: Republicans have not been given the option of choosing the lesser of two evils. The GOP has selected someone who is unfit »

Senate Republicans block Lee Amendment, preserve AFFH

Featured image The Lee Amendment to defund President Obama’s Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) regulation failed in the Senate yesterday because not enough Republicans backed it. The Amendment was tabled by a vote of 60-37. Jeremy Carl aptly describes this vote as a defeat for conservatism, community control, and common sense. It is a victory, as Carl says, for turning the federal government into a National Zoning board, forcing high density housing »