Archives for April 2016
Plus me, of course.
The rise of Donald Trump has finally given us a real, working definition of one of the vaguest yet most overused terms in politics.
That term is the “Republican establishment.” For Republicans themselves, particularly conservatives trying to market themselves as underdogs, the term is exclusively used as a pejorative: “You’re an establishment hack, not a real conservative!” For media folk, it’s mainly a shorthand designation for more-moderate, donor-friendly Republicans: think Mitt Romney, the Bushes, and so forth.
Of course, no one ever cops to being part of “the establishment,” including (or especially) Republican congressional leaders, think-tank policy wonks who provide the GOP with its arguments and white papers, or anyone else who has helped steer the party for the last generation. Depending to who you talk to, this group or that person are either establishment or not, and there’s any particular rhyme or reason for the bestowing of the label. It’s really been just an all-purpose insult, akin to calling someone a “closet liberal” or “Republican in Name Only.” [Read more…]