The real attitudes of the Republican Party are now on full display, courtesy of Donald Trump. McConnell's "we need to deny Obama a second term", "only in cases of legitimate rape", and Romney's "the 47%" are stark examples of those attitudes. Traditionally, Republicans have feigned outrage. "Not us" they say. "Racism is abhorrent, and we value inclusion and diversity" they say. But Trump is now an open reflection of what the party establishment has always espoused. To wit: immigrants are bad for America, a source of crime and a cause of inner city strife. Women's reproductive health rights should be restricted because Roe v. Wade violates our Christian principles. Poor people are lazy and undeserving of social assistance. If you're undereducated, it's your own fault even if inner city schools are strangled for lack of resources. Unions inflate wages and make American industries non-competitive. Rich people are industrious, deserving of their wealth, and will fuel economic development that will benefit the working class by giving them new jobs. Government itself is the enemy, as it hamstrings those same rich people with overbearing regulations that stifle development. The President is a liar who hates America. The hypocritical outrage that is now coming from the Republican establishment is breathtaking.
Republicans have tried to spin their way out of these realities. But what's really causing angst among the Republican Party apparatchik is that in order to disavow Trump, they must simultaneously abandon the attitudes upon which their party brand is built. So, the party is faced with a poor choice of either immediate self-immolation or a "death of a thousand cuts." They can reject Trump, post up Cruz or Rubio and in the short term, risk losing the 2016 election, because polls show neither Cruz nor Rubio to be electable in November. They would cling stubbornly to old worn out methods and ideologies, and risk moving further out of touch with the attitudes of a rapidly changing demographic. Alternately, they can support Trump, in which case, he represents a clear break from party tradition, and the party simply blows up and changes instantly. Whichever way it goes, and whether or not they are successful in denying Trump the nomination, the party will never be the same. Further, it's a change that's long overdue. But, Trump isn't the cause. He's the symptom, a result of policies and practices initiated by the Republican Party long ago.
We need a vibrant, intelligent, respectful, and rational two-party system in America. Hopefully, this year's election cycle will be a catalyst for the changes needed to move us in that direction.