“Build on successes, Move on from failures”

Plotting the minority of Republicans and levels of equivocation with Trump.

Pollsters are just beginning to examine the Cheney sympathizers. In last week’s CBS News survey of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, most of the 20 percent who opposed her ouster cited among their reasons “There’s room in the party for different views” or “Not everyone should support Donald Trump.” But many gave reasons that will be harder to reconcile with the party’s ongoing campaign to whitewash the insurrection and the lies party leaders told about the election. Thirty-nine percent of respondents who sided with Cheney said “she’s right about the election,” and 37 percent said “she’s right about rule of law.” This core pro-Cheney faction, roughly 35 to 40 percent of 20 percent, adds up to 7 or 8 percent of the Republican-leaning electorate.

House Republicans figure that by the time the 2022 election rolls around, these people will have forgotten a party leadership vote that took place in May 2021. But purging Cheney didn’t solve the GOP’s underlying problem: Trump. In an Echelon Insights poll taken in April, 15 percent of Republican voters said they preferred a GOP “free of Donald Trump’s influence.” In a Navigator survey, when Republicans and Republican leaners were asked whether the party “should continue on the path laid out by Donald Trump” or “make some changes and move in a new direction,” 22 percent chose a new direction. These numbers closely resemble the percentage who have opposed Cheney’s removal in more recent surveys.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The Echelon Insights poll found that beyond the 15 percent of Republicans who wanted to cleanse the party of Trump, another 21 percent preferred a GOP that “supports Donald Trump’s America First agenda but is not led by him,” and a further 23 percent preferred a GOP that “builds on Donald Trump’s successes and moves on from his failures.” Polls continue to show that Trump is an abrasive factor within the party, particularly in his treatment of liberals and racial issues. He’s also an albatross among independents: The Echelon Insights survey found that 57 percent of them would prefer a GOP free of his influence.

Parse out some meanings here. Understand, walk into a business with one of those “In Our America” placards and say “I want my Republican Party to build in his successes and moves on from his failures” and await a response. (Go ahead and see if “America First Agenda” isn’t ptesumed to be a code word for, like, “We shoulda fought the Commies with the Nazis as our allies” as opposed to, like, “Get Out of Afghanistan”.). There are items in his four years that could be viewed as “his agenda” that came out in controversy or sudden strike racist charges — oh, executive orders pulling employee racial sensitivity training — which struck me as just too haphazardly dropped to be effective — do you count such things as successes? His biggest success appears to be McConnell’s — three Supreme Court Justices.

On Cheney, we wait to see the caliber of her opponents. I do suspect she can pull a Murkowski or Lieberman and run and win with the Independents (and all six Democrats in Wyoming) after the Republicans nominate their luminary. Currently Trump is leaning that the passe nature of blogs as opposed to Twittering is leaving his online presence moribund — but we see plans on Giant Real World Touring so maybe he will get online in that backhand way.

One more consideration as you reconfigure political parties.

Different states have different customs and what’s prudent in one place might be radical in another.

That is different because it doesn’t mean calling ideas crazy as much as situationally unwise. So trying to be a Hatfield or McCall in Oklahoma would be as unwise as trying to be James Inhofe in Oregon.

Some state Republican Parties do manage to pull this off. Maryland and Massachusetts are both solid blue states with Republican governors; both Larry Hogan and Charlie Baker are well-respected moderates. And Democrat Jon Bel Edwards seems to be a good fit in Louisiana.

Yeah, but good luck replacing the Democratic governors of Louisiana and Kansas and Kentucky and North Carolina with a Democrat. They came in — generally barely — because the Republicans before them screwed the pooch in a manner that couldn’t be shuffled off to the corner or placed into broad context of national politics. For that matter we await a Republican governor in Oregon.

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