Sunday, July 21, 2024

The Republican Party Has Deeper Leadership Problems Than Just Donald Trump

“We’re gonna win so much, you may even get tired of winning. And you’ll say, ‘Please, please. It’s too much winning. We can’t take it anymore. Mr. President, it’s too much.’ – Donald Trump, April 12, 2016

The Republican Party isn’t doing much winning these days. While I still expect Republicans to gain the House, it will be by the narrowest of majorities. But I cannot rule out Democrats keeping the House, also by the narrowest of majorities. The Democrats will certainly increase their Senate majority.

This latest setback for the Republican Party comes in the wake of historically unpopular Democrats presiding over extremely high inflation, increasing crime, a weakening economy, foreign policy debacles such as in Afghanistan, high energy prices, and a porous southern border. Even with this record of Democrat failure, moderate and independent voters in too many swing districts took a look at the Republican candidate and said, “nope.”

This is the third national election in a row Republicans have lost. Republicans lost Congress in 2018 and lost the White House and Senate in 2020.

In the wake of this debacle, there have been growing voices that want to replace Donald Trump as the titular leader of the GOP. I’m actually all for that but it will not be the quick fix many of its proponents think it will be.

Yes, Trump Should Go, But….

Donald Trump has no business remaining as the de facto leader of the Republican Party. That was certainly the case after his defeat in November 2020. It was definitely true after the riot on January 6, 2021. His recent personal attacks on everyone from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s wife (who served in his cabinet), to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, to Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin are unbecoming of someone who claims to lead the Republican Party. These are people who did not attack him first. Instead, in the case of DeSantis and Youngkin, he’s worried Republican voters might not be into him and instead would prefer these two principled, conservative men to lead the party into 2024. It’s time for a leader who actually will put the Republican Party and America first instead of themselves.

Even if Trump’s selfishness isn’t enough for Republicans to dump him, his record of electoral failure should. Under Trump’s leadership, Republicans lost the House in 2018. In 2020, he followed that up by losing the White House and the Senate. If a coach has three losing seasons in a row, they’re usually fired.

I’m not a “Never Trumper” by any means. I voted for the man in 2020. But my allegiance has always been to the country, the Republican Party, and the conservative movement. Right now, winning elections is more important than catering to the hurt feelings of a 76-year-old man.

But Trump Is Not The Only GOP Leader Who Should Go

Let’s start with someone who should’ve gone after the 2020 debacle, RNC Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel. The fact the Republican National Committee reelected her after 2020 does not speak well for that organization. The party cannot tolerate failure any longer if it wants to remain a viable national party. Under Romney McDaniel, the Republican Party has failed to adapt to the expansion of early voting and vote by mail. That is simply inexcusable.

Speaking of rewarding failure, Kevin McCarthy should not be the next Speaker of the House, if there is a Republican majority. McCarthy must take some of the blame for this debacle. The GOP House did not have a positive message to run on and it clearly cost us.

Over on the Senate side, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell needs to go as well. He’s too old and too unpopular and is now an albatross around our necks. Now is the time for new leadership.

That new leader certainly shouldn’t be Florida Senator Rick Scott, whose failure at the NRSC includes the wasting of record cash hauls on an online fundraising plan that flopped. The GOP Senate also did not have a positive message to run on. It is also clear that the NRSC’s policy of sitting out primaries was a failure this cycle. Finally, there is more and more evidence that Scott treated the NRSC as his personal super PAC instead of helping the party at large.

The architects of failure in the GOP are many. Focusing on just Donald Trump allows these people to escape accountability.