According to a report from the Guardian's David Smith, conservatives are increasingly looking at putting Donald Trump in the past and moving on but Trumpism will remain a "dominant strain" in the Republican Party and voters can expect to see candidates carrying his banner for years.
With the former president reeling after several of the candidates he endorsed went down in flames in Republican primaries, DC insiders are seeing a way for future candidates to champion his causes while turning their backs on the man and all the baggage that comes with him.
With Smith writing, "The hard-right, nativist-populist strain of Republican politics predates Trump and will surely survive him," Bill Galston of the Brookings Institute, told him, "Donald Trump has transformed the Republican party over the past five years and it is now a solid majority Trumpist party with everything that entails in policy and in tone. On the other hand, Republicans, including very conservative ones, are clearly willing to entertain the possibility of Trumpism without Trump.”
Galston elaborated, "It may be that the people who have been in the bull’s eye of Trump’s ‘big lie’ campaign have started resenting it and took their resentment out. More generally, I think an increasing number of people are asking themselves a question that they weren’t asking previously: would we be better off with a Trumpist candidate who’s not named Donald Trump?”
Add to that, Smith wrote, whatever sway the former president has over the GOP may be challenged by future candidates who are willing to go to further extremes to appeal to his rabid base.
"Some on this wing effectively accuse him of not being Trumpy enough, as demonstrated last year when he was booed for urging supporters to get vaccinated against the coronavirus (he now barely mentions vaccines in his speeches)," wrote Smith with former House Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Il) predicting what is coming could be even more dangerous.
“Maga’s dark enough on its own … Trumpism has metastasized beyond Trump and it’ll go in a bunch of different dark, eerie places but it’s all the same thing. Trumpism now is the dominant strain in the party,” Walsh warned.
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