One problem with panicking over shady polls is a tendency to lose focus on what’s really going on. The historic ouster of the Republican Speaker of the House prompted by his own party last month was not a completely anomalous event. It was part of something we are witnessing—the continued structural and moral implosion of the entire Republican Party—and the pace appears to be quickening.
While Kevin McCarthy’s removal last month was obviously a major headline, signs of the GOP’s accelerating decline can also be observed through a pattern of smaller stories. This week, Juan Williams wrote an opinion piece for The Hill entitled, “House Republicans are jumping off the sinking ship,” which begins, “Have you noticed the rush of House Republicans calling it quits in the last few weeks?”
The piece, the site’s #1 most popular (as of this writing), details recent House GOP exit announcements along with stated reasons. For example, Colorado Rep. Ken Buck cited his refusal to put up with the “many Republican leaders” who are lying about the 2020 election being stolen. In threatening an even earlier retirement, Indiana Rep. Victoria Spartz recently claimed, “The Republican House is failing people again.”
As Williams points out, if Trump becomes the GOP nominee, House Republicans running for reelection may find themselves “forced” to support a convicted felon and the election lie. It’s no wonder, therefore, that Buck predicts we should expect even more House Republicans to announce their departure “in the near future.”
In his new book, Tired of Winning: Donald Trump and the End of the Grand Old Party, Jonathan Karl reveals that an unnamed former top Trump official who served for over a year in the West Wing is now calling Trump a “traitor and a malignancy in our nation and represents a clear and present danger to our democracy and the rule of law.”
This individual further described Trump as lacking “any shred of human decency, humility or caring… morally bankrupt, breathtakingly dishonest, lethally incompetent, and stunningly ignorant.” As Karl told Jen Psaki on MSNBC Monday evening, “The people that are sounding the alarm loudest about what a second Trump term would mean are those who are closest to him.”
In another development, billionaire PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel admitted to The Atlantic this week that there were “a lot of things I got wrong” about his decision to donate $1.25 million to Trump in 2016. Realizing that Trump’s presidency was “crazier” and “more dangerous” than he imagined, Thiel did not contribute to Trump’s 2020 campaign. After Thiel told Trump he is not supporting him in 2024, Trump reportedly called him a “fucking scumbag.”
From House Republicans wishing to leave before Trump’s stranglehold grows even tighter, to more reports of high-profile underlings and donors believing that Trump Kool-Aid is poison, the GOP is showing increasing signs of imploding. There is no reason to believe the Republican Party will be able to pull itself off life support between now and Election Day 2024. On the contrary, each passing day brings us closer to “RIP, GOP.”