Back in June of 2014, I wrote about the obvious rift in the Republican Party. Little did I know it would lead to what we have today – a political revolution.
There are many cross currents that underlie the changes that are emerging within both Parties. At the root is intense anger that the voters have been ignored for decades. They are fed up and aren’t going to take it anymore. Fully 70+% of Republican primary voters say they want either Donald Trump or Ted Cruz. Bernie Sanders is mounting a similar effort to overcome the stranglehold of the super delegates in the Democratic Party.
Within the Republican Party, there is an intense and increasing battle between party elites, big donors, big media, big government and the voters all across the political spectrum. This unrest will not go away until the people wrest our nation back from this “Washington Cartel.”
What’s at stake is who’s in charge of the nation’s government. The voters are insisting on a return of government of, by and for the people and won’t take empty promises any longer. They are tired of being pandered to in election after election and are demanding change. What’s this going to mean for our political parties?
This revolt is not over ideology but over the direction of the economy (globalism vs. nationalism). The political elite are “owned” by the “Washington Cartel” through donations by big money interests. The Washington Cartel is hell-bent to foist a New World Order (Globalization) on a reluctant population. Americans were raised on individual freedom and political sovereignty. Much of this has been eroded by the open borders, cheap labor policies and economic entanglement that this New World Order requires. We are not used to being controlled by those outside our borders or giving up our economic sovereignty.
This unrest can be viewed through the lens of middle class American jobs. The voters who are turning out in record numbers at primaries and caucuses want an economy that works for all Americans – not just for the investor class, multi-national corporations and Wall Street. They are tired of politicians running for office and promising jobs and then, once ensconced in their ivory towers, managing the status quo.
We can argue over who’s right – the political elite/donor class or the voters but it doesn’t matter. The voters will eventually win this battle which is destined to change both parties long into the future. The last time we had this battle (1854) the changes lasted for 50 years. How damaging this revolt will be, which party will suffer most and when change will occur is something to contemplate.
Revolution is never pretty and the power brokers never give up their power without a fight. In 1854, the Whig Party was thrown out and is barely remembered in history books. So far, it looks like the Democrats will leave this problem festering for a while, which I think is actually more damaging in the long run. Republican voters appear inclined to take this head on, this year. This is really what the populist Trump vs. the “Stop Trump” campaign is about. Trump is trying to resurrect the Reagan coalition. He is bringing Independents and Democrats into the Republican tent but is having trouble with existing Republicans.
The revolt may not be successful this year but if it isn’t, look for a third party in the next election cycle that can attract voters from all segments of the electorate. The voters will not settle for anything less than a government that focuses on a strong domestic economy with job growth and a restoration of the middle class to its former self.
Surprisingly, Republican power brokers are working to disenfranchise the new voters Trump brings in and keep their ranks pure. This is a losing strategy that promises to continue the growth of unaffiliated voters and reduce Republican voters. Party elites are playing with fire by ignoring what the vast majority of their voters want. For a nation founded on government 0f, by, and for the people, this is very dangerous and will lead to the reformation or destruction of one or both parties.
After the election and the dust settles, both parties should move to a more populist platform or the Washington Cartel will re-emerge and the fight will go on. In 1992 and 1996, Pat Buchanan ran for President on a populist Reagan-like platform but the nation hadn’t suffered enough yet and Mr. Buchanan fell short. Now, we have Donald Trump offering to put forth the same populist platform and the nation has now suffered much more.
Within a few short months we will know if the nation has suffered enough. Will Americans decide to stay the course with the country moving towards 3rd world status, with the rich living in gated communities, a tiny and struggling middle class and the rest left to “eat cake?” Or will we once again pursue Reagan’s “Shining City on a Hill” with a strong middle class?
Will Republicans be able to heal the deep wounds left by this revolt? Will a new President be able to follow through on a populist platform? Will Americans have the patience to wait four more years to put the nation back on sound footing? Will America continue on its path to indebtedness and 3rd world status? Will anything change?
Frank Shannon served in the U.S. Army, was an engineering/operations manager for AT&T for 27 years, was the owner of a small manufacturing business for 23 years, served as Colorado Chair of the Coalition for a Prosperous America and moved to Mesquite in 2013.