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Jennifer Rubin’s Assessment of the GOP

“The party of Lincoln has become the party of Charlottesville, Arpaio, DACA repeal and the Muslim ban.” —Jennifer Rubin.

Note:  Rubin is a conservative, indeed Republican (at least in the past) commentator.

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About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor of Political Science and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. CSK says:

    Rubin has been shredding Trump ever since he and Melania descended the escalator in Trump Tower.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  2. JohnMcC says:

    Ms Rubin is one of several actual conservatives to realize that the base of the R-party is no longer interested in such stuff. Fascism is so much more fun! Max Boot is another – and you and I have chatted briefly about him.

    Sense you brought her name up let me recommend a ‘Right Turn’ column from earlier today: ‘Vice President Pence and Some Others Need to Answer Some Questions’. She points out that the original Trump letter firing Dir Comey was the subject of an ad hoc meeting In the Oval Office that included essentially the entire Trump retinue making everyone including the VP and Priebus and more all witnesses if it becomes an obstruction-of-justice/abuse-of-power question.

    She also points out that if Pence is somewhat implicated then an impeachment after the ’18 elections we could end up with President Pelosi. Jennifer Rubin said that and seemed happy about it.

    Jennifer Rubin!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  3. Lounsbury says:

    @JohnMcC: One would have to suspect that in part she expects Pelosi is quite beatable in a race. A model Ford.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  4. Argon says:

    Given that she’s otherwise been quite wrong about other things, I’ve been surprised that Trump was what it took to remove her blinders. I hope the phenomenon lasts.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  5. Kylopod says:

    @Argon: As I’ve said, my working theory is she’s angling for a slot on MSNBC, home of the Reasonable Conservatives™ (almost all of whom have quite unreasonable pasts).

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  6. Paul L. says:

    Rubin was Romney’s chief media fluffer.
    She supported pulling out of the Paris Accords until Trump did it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  7. JohnMcC says:

    @Lounsbury: I keep trying to be cynical but I can’t keep up.

    @Kylopod: I remembered you saying that and of course she is already fairly often on their ‘panels’. So you might be a prophet.

    @Paul L.: Indeed. The unappealing nature of the history of quite a few of these ‘never-Trump’ rightwingers is what makes it remarkable that they sound so much like sane liberals at times these days.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  8. Kylopod says:

    @JohnMcC: There are a few who have gone the full distance and become liberals. Ed Schultz was once an actual right-wing talk-radio host. David Brock is not only an ex-conservative but an admitted liar and smear artist.

    I don’t want to give the impression that I think anyone with a conservative past should be viewed as permanently tainted. Far from it. People change–in both directions. Andrew Sullivan gets a lot of flak from both the left and right, but he’s done a lot to atone for many of his past positions (particulary on the Iraq War, which he began turning against before it became popular to do so). I watched his evolution as it was happening, and it struck me as basically sincere.

    My basic problem with Rubin is that she’s a hack. She was a hack back when she was cheerleading for Romney, and she’s still a hack now, NeverTrumper or not. Many of the things she complains about were part of the GOP long before Trump came along, and yet she was either silent about them or a willing participant. It was striking seeing that recent column in which she excoriated the GOP for climate change denialism and Obamacare derangement syndrome, when she had never uttered a peep about those things before, and in fact this was the same columnist who once defended Sarah Palin’s “death panels” hoax and was repeatedly claiming the law was failing when it wasn’t.

    Now if she came out and said she was wrong about at least some of these things, that would be a start. But she doesn’t. She wants us to forget about all that and give her a blank slate so that she can be viewed as a principled Republican standing up to the Orange Menace that has hijacked her party.

    She would be in good company on MSNBC, along with Joe Scarborough, Michael Steele, and S.E. Cupp–all people with histories of saying utterly asinine things before remaking themselves as Reasonable Conservatives™ on the network that has long styled itself as the liberal FOX. As such, they’re roughly the mirror image of Fox News Democrats (Alan Colmes, Kirsten Powers, etc.). She’d fit right in.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  9. rachel says:

    @Kylopod:

    Sullivan gets a lot of flak from both the left and right, but he’s done a lot to atone for many of his past positions (particulary on the Iraq War, which he began turning against before it became popular to do so). I watched his evolution as it was happening, and it struck me as basically sincere.

    Did he ever apologize for calling people against the Iraq war “fifth columnists”?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  10. Kylopod says:

    @rachel:

    Did he ever apologize for calling people against the Iraq war “fifth columnists”?

    First of all, what he said wasn’t directed at Iraq War opponents. It was from a piece written a few days after 9/11, in which he attacked what he called “the decadent left.”

    Did he apologize for this comment? Supposedly he did. Personally, I don’t think it was good enough. He was backpedaling practically from the moment he made the comment, and he never fully owned up to how offensive it was. Moreover, even to this day he still engages in much of the same kind of hippie-punching underlying the original comment.

    Nowhere did I say I’m defending everything he’s ever written. Far from it. My point was that he did genuinely evolve in his worldview and has been, for the most part, very forthright about it. And even in his worst days he never behaved as a GOP shill the way Rubin has for much of her career.

    I really do not ask much of conservative Trump critics. I want to see them acknowledge that the party was anything but healthy before Trump came along, and that he is in many ways the end result, not the cause, of GOP lunacy. Most importantly, I want them to be able to say “I was wrong,” and to show some sign of grappling with how their own mistakes are part of what led to the rise of a figure like Trump. Some conservative pundits have done all this, or at least started in that direction. Rubin has not–not even one bit. She has basically remade herself overnight as a Reasonable Conservative™ without a word of explanation, lashing out at tendencies that she pretends she was not part of, using Trump as the excuse. If Rubio had been the one to win the GOP nomination and to win the presidency, she’d be doing the same shilling she was doing with figures like Bush and Romney in the past–even as he’d be pursuing many of the same policies that she attacks in Trump.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  11. Facebones says:

    @rachel:

    Did he ever apologize for calling people against the Iraq war “fifth columnists”?

    Or for promoting the junk science of Charles Murray and the Bell Curve?

    Sullivan gets far too much credit for turning against Bush, when anyone with half a brain could have told him that the GOP was not a friend of the gays. It basically took Rove turning the 2004 election into a referendum about gay marriage for him to realize that.

    And he also promoted some of the most baseless lies about the Clilnton health plan back in the 90s. So, he’s got a lot more to atone for, in my opinion.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0