What I find weird (maybe alarming) about the Trump Regime is how it highlights the facade of ideology in American politics and the resurgence of the personality cult.
Trump throughout his life has always shown himself furthest from what Republicans and Conservatives consider acceptable or even grudgingly respectable behavior. He is the epitome of the loud-mouthed Northern (New York) Elite that Southern Conservatives love to hate. He’s shown throughout his life that he has no moral compass when it comes to business, infidelity and personal morality or any interest in religion and God.
At the heat of his phenomenal presidential run, when a reporter asked him if he ever asks God for something including forgiveness, he actually said he never asks for forgiveness from God. Remember that forgiveness is a central piece of Christian and Conservative doctrine. The importance of personal morality embodied in conservative heavyweights like General Robert E. Lee among others is at complete variance with Trump’s person. Having fraternized with Texas Christians, Trump’s potty mouth and basic crudeness could not be far from their espoused and lived values.
How then is it that this New York billionaire who has spent his political and personal life donating to Pro-choice democrats and fraternizing with New York and Hollywood elite suddenly take over a party like the Republican Party? What I find most interesting is the fact that Republican voters have sided with Trump over lifelong Republicans like Jeff Flake of Arizona who has 96% conservative rating and voting record. He is essentially a conservative’s conservative. A lifetime of conservatism vs a barely two years stint with the Republican Party, and Donald Trump win support from the mainly Southern Voter base in pushing out senators like Jeff Flake from the senate! How does that happen?
What is even more amazing is the case of Bob Corker. He’s one of those senators who supported Trump early on and campaigned for him last year. Corker even chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, one of the most conservative institutions in American politics. He’s got a history of extreme conservatism. But a disagreement with Trump has led to his ousting from the Senate, as well as Republican voters taking the side of Trump against Corker. This is just bizarre. How can the conservative people of Tennessee back a New York billionaire with a history of liberal support and easy crude behavior over their own son? Absolutely bizarre.
What this Trump phenomenon has shown is the power of the personality cult over ideals. With the examples of Flake and Corker, other Republican lawmakers are now afraid to say anything that Trump might find objectionable for fear that he might destroy their political careers with a tweet, which might even be a lie. He keeps repeating a provable lie that Bob Corker helped Obama get the Iran Nuclear Deal when in fact Corker was super public with his opposition to the deal both in the senate and in the media. I have no idea what is going on here other than the triumph of the personality cult over ideals, principles, and policy positions.
Trump might be a catalyst for the disintegration of the Republican Party or a complete realignment of who and what makes conservatism in America. But what I find most alarming is the lack of sway that truth or falsehood has in the candidates Republican or Conservative voters are willing to back.