It can be amusing sometimes to watch the mainstream media attempt to jam the real world into one of the neat and tidy reality TV templates they have created and live on like oxygen.
We are currently being sold the absolute bill of goods that there is currently a “war” on for the future of the Republican Party, and that the battle at hand is causing some form a “fracture” within Republican ranks.
On one side is the Old Guard, led by Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) but also aided and abetted like Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) and figures like former Ohio governor and representative (and Fox News host) John Kasich (who I think is still shoveling food in his mouth from his failed 2016 presidential run).
On the other side, of course, is Donald Trump, fresh off of launching his blog or as the long-tongued bootlickers at Fox News put it, his “communications platform.”
But arguing that there is a fracture within the party at this point is a little like arguing as German tanks rolled in front of the Arc de Triomphe that the French government “has a fighting chance.”
Donald Trump won the war for the future of the Republican Party on July 21, 2016, when he pawed at his daughter and accepted the presidential nomination.
Since then, the entire party has marched in lockstep with his jackbooted assault on American tradition, values, and decency. They fell over themselves to endorse his racist border wall, his tax cuts for rich guys like himself, his unyielding incompetence and ignorance on issues great and small, and most horrifically, his absolute failure on COVID-19 and the resulting six-figure death toll (581,302 lives lost and counting).
The real-world constituency for Cheney, Romney and the rest could fit comfortably in the living room of one of Romney’s sprawling mansions – with ample room for social distancing.
There’s also the matter that the Cheney wing of the party, such as it is, is not that different from Trumpism. The Cheney wing is all-in for stolen elections, military coups, and vile tax cuts for the super-rich who don’t ever trickle down on the rest of us but store their booty in offshore accounts like the upper class pirates they are.
They are Trump with the good sense to say the horrible stuff inside the country club, instead of on Twitter (RIP Donald’s account, no not really).
They lost this battle years ago and figures like Sens. Mitch McConnell, Ted Cruz, and Rick Scott show they are very aware of that. That’s why the three men, along with many others, have flown down to Mar-a-Lago to kiss Trump’s ring and treat him in the fashion of an orange Don Corleone.
The power in the party remains firmly in Donald Trump’s hands and the future of the party belongs to him or those carved out his image like Florida’s Ron DeSantis, or Senators like Tom Cotton and Josh Hawley (fist pump to the insurrectionists like you mean it, Josh!).
The media narrative feels good to the part of our brains that seek out such resolution. The press likes a good story and liberals like to think there’s a band of insurgent freedom fighters hoping to restore a purportedly decent Republican Party to power.
But the reality is far more sober. The Trump wing won, and the Cheney insurgents are the same brand of bloodthirsty looters who laid the groundwork for his ascension.
The whole rotten lot have more in common than any superficial differences they may exhibit, and the loudmouths already won anyway.
Trumpism is the GOP way forward and the reality all of the rest of us normal people have to contend with.