President Donald Trump is broadly considered to be in grave peril in the November election, which could not only see him swept from the White House, but could eliminate the GOP’s control of the Senate and lead to Democratic gains in the House.
But even if all of this happens, some experts told The Guardian, it could take years before Trump’s brand of populist, authoritarian nativism and racism fades from the Republican Party.
“The end of Trump would not necessarily mean the end of Trumpism,” reported David Smith. “Nine in 10 Republicans still approve of the job he is doing as president, according to Gallup. A SurveyMonkey poll for Axios last December showed Republican voters’ favourite picks for 2024 led by Mike Pence, with Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr in second place, followed by Nikki Haley, Ivanka Trump, Marco Rubio and Mike Pompeo.”
“He is the Republican party,” said Never Trump GOP strategist Stuart Stevens. “There’s not even like an opposition government in exile. There’s no De Gaulle; there’s just Vichy France. The party is the party that endorses Roy Moore and attacks John Bolton. What we saw as a recessive gene in the party turned out to be a dominant gene.” He added: “If you ever really want to get depressed, go read George Bush’s 2000 acceptance speech at the convention. It reads like a document from a lost civilization. Who are these people? It’s like the Mayans. It’s all about humility and sacrifice and honor and service.”
Democratic strategist Paul Begala agreed, saying it could take several election cycles before Trump-style politics is eliminated completely. “Trumpism itself has been deeply unleashed in the party and I think history tells us, darkly, that when a major party legitimizes hate, which the Republican party has, it’s very difficult to get it undone. It takes time, often a lot of blood.”
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