My Turn: Petition calls for renaming GOP the ‘Trumpublican Party’

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Published: 6/15/2021 6:55:41 AM

The political opponents of the Democrat Party have a lot of problems; one big one is their name. How is it possible they can maintain the label “Republican” when they’ve trashed it, bashed it, and mashed it to a pulp? Why would they even want to keep a name for a party Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, even Ronald Reagan wouldn’t recognize? And, who gets the rights to the name “Republican” anyway?

A new petition on Change.org is calling for voters, from supporters of former President Trump to independents and Democrats, to endorse their becoming the Trumpublican Party.

Let’s review. Once Mr. Trump secured the presidential nomination in 2016, the GOP unofficially became the Trumpublican Party. Today, five years later, it’s virtually official. All that is needed now is ratification. A petition bearing millions of signatures could really help. It makes zero sense for loyal believers in the twice-impeached president to be members of the same party as, say, Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, or Sens. Mitt Romney and Lisa Murkowski.

Doubt it? Just look at their May 28 vote against establishing a nonpartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection. No matter how harshly on Jan. 6 and 7 House minority “leader” Kevin McCarthy and Senate minority leader Mitch “Grim Reaper” McConnell lashed out at the Mar-a-Lago blogger, when Mr. Trump unequivocally demanded the party vote against the commission — even though it would be modeled after the nonpartisan one formed in the wake of 9-11—these loyal “Trumpublicans” fell in line.

Despite the fact that McCarthy’s own appointed negotiator, Rep. John Katko, got the Democrats to concede to key demands about the commission, they still voted no. If that’s not proof-positive that they’re the “Trumpublican” party, what is? If you agree, sign the petition and send it out far and wide.

Sure, there’s a group of old school Republicans threatening to start a third party if the GOP continues its headlong plunge into authoritarianism, as Greg Sargent noted recently in the Washington Post. Hats off to them, beginning with Miles Taylor, the former Homeland Security official in the Trump administration who has been making the case for a new party. “It is time to either reform or repeal the Republican Party,” Taylor said. Why? Why should normal Republicans have to start a new party, ceding the name and infrastructure to GOP Congress members like Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz?

Yes, there is an impressive cohort of old school Republicans who have signed on to the third party notion. Former governors, cabinet officials, even the onetime chair of the party. But if they want the mantle “Republican” they’re going to have to fight for it; not relinquish it to people that traffic in the big lie. One concrete action they can take is to sign the Trumpublican petition, expected to attract signatories from across the political spectrum. Anyone doubting Trumpublicans were already running the party only had to look at their May 12 vote to purge arch conservative Rep. Liz Cheney from her leadership post. Her offense? Demanding that the GOP unambiguously repudiate Trump’s big lie about the election, admit to his culpability for the Jan. 6 insurrection, and fully commit to respecting future democratic outcomes.

The Trumpublican petition campaign would get a big boost if the Lincoln Project promoted it, or if Rep. Cheney’s father, former vice president Dick Cheney, announced he was signing. Ditto, George W. Bush; not to mention brother Jeb and other 2016 candidates.

Two pronounced symptoms of the Mar-a-Lago virus that’s infected Trumpublicans are feverish delusions and a lockjaw variant that interferes with a patient’s ability to speak truthfully. (See McConnell, Mitch; McCarthy, Kevin.) The CDC has yet to weigh in on health risks, but acknowledge that fear of Long Hauler Lying Syndrome would weaken individual members, their party, and democracy.

President Biden has warned for some time that we are in a battle for the soul of the nation. The GOP is in a struggle for the soul of its party. What clearer way to draw the battle lines than for millions of people to sign a petition calling for the one-term president and his minions to rebrand themselves once and for all as Trumpublicans.

Rob Okun (rob@voicemalemagazine.org), syndicated by PeaceVoice, is editor/publisher of Voice Male magazine, chronicling the transformation of masculinity.


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