This morning, we drove to a nearby town to meet my family for breakfast. On the way, we heard an NPR article of an interview with a conservative political commentator named Tara Setmayer. I never heard of her before this.
You can listen/read it for yourself here.
The big part that stood out to me (all in italics).
MARTÍNEZ: You left the Republican Party in 2020. Can you tell us what prompted that decision?
SETMAYER: Absolutely. After 27 years with the Republican Party, as I saw the embrace of Trumpism overtaking the Republican Party that I initially joined, I recognized that there was no longer a place for someone like me in the party. After everything that had taken place during the Trump administration and now on top of his threatening our free and fair election system, questioning our constitutional order and party leadership, not fully rebuking that, I decided I could no longer be a part of such an illiberal organization.
MARTÍNEZ: If the Republican Party were to, say, disavow Donald Trump, would that be the last or only big obstacle to really having an effort by the Republican Party to try to diversify?
SETMAYER: It has to start there. We’ve seen the xenophobia. We’ve seen the racism. We have seen how hostile Trumpism has been to diversification in this country, to minorities, to immigrants. The idea of America first has been very exclusive; it’s not inclusive. And until the Republican Party has a full repudiation of that, there’s no credible attempt at saying that this is a party that is inclusive and that they’re welcoming of diversity. There’s a fine line between being inclusive and tokenizing minorities. Just because they put up a couple of brown faces and a few women, that does not mean that the party as a whole and their policies and the behavior of people within the party is in line with being inclusive.
I was perplexed by her use of “Illiberal organization”. But in this context, it means narrow minded or intolerant. Alt-right. Among other things.
What Trumpism is doing to American conservative politics, especially among young people, is turning their stomachs. Most youth are pro-gay, not religious, fiscally conservative, curiously aware of the global warming crisis and welcoming to diversity. And while the xenophobic Reagan-era Republicans are dying out, they are not going to be replaced by more of the same, which is why Florida and Texas are trying their damnedest to undermine education in their states. Poorly educated people tend to, but do not exclusively, vote republican. How do you create more political people instead of attracting them by shedding old traditions of anti-gay, anti-diversity cultures? Why, you strip them of education, silly billies!
The Republican Party has an inside-out soul searching to do. And it’s NOT the path their leadership with Trump or DeSantis is taking them. The closest guy they got to keeping their momentum was probably Paul Ryan and our dear dead friend John McCain, who should have been a boon for the Party by embracing Affordable Heath Care, but gullible people are subject to the public relational machine of big money and propaganda.