Monday’s Forum

Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. 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


  1. Kylopod says:

    I remember back in the aughts after Trent Lott made his remarks praising Strom Thurmond’s 1948 run as a segregationist, and how quickly and forcefully the Bush White House condemned the remarks, leading to Lott stepping down as Senate Majority Leader.

    I’m not saying this in praise of Bush exactly–he was more than willing to use racial dogwhistles himself, and the GOP had a long history of looking the other way when its Dixiecrats shot off their mouth (in fact Lott had been expressing more or less the same sentiments for decades, to little public outcry). I just think it’s a sign of how low the GOP has sunk that it can’t even manage the most anodyne and easy disavowal of white supremacy.

  2. Sleeping Dog says:


    Except for Christy and Asa Hutchinson, no R has called trump out. It’s less, fear of trump, than it is fear of the mob.

  3. senyordave says:

    Trumpp had a meal with a white supremacist. Since white supremacy is a de facto core principle of the modern Republican party, why should any republican politician condemn Trump.

  4. Kylopod says:

    @Sleeping Dog: There are some prominent Jewish conservatives who have called him out—Ben Shapiro, David Friedman (Trump’s former ambassador to Israel), the Zionist Organization of America which recently gave Trump an award.

    It shouldn’t be only Jews doing the call-outs. Also, I have a feeling that if Trump had met with less overtly anti-Semitic white nationalists such as VDARE or American Renaissance, these same Jewish conservatives would be silent. They only care about bigotry when it’s against their own, and they even put up with a fair amount of anti-Semitism on the right as long as it’s sufficiently coded.

  5. senyordave says:

    @Kylopod: The Jewish Republican groups have had no problem with Trump’s bigotry up to now. It just got too overt this time, plus it wasn’t bigotry against people of color, which apparently never bother Jewish Republicans.

  6. Kylopod says:

    @senyordave: We saw a miniature version of this play out just a few months ago with the controversy over Doug Mastriano’s connection with Gab and Andrew Torba, leading to a callout from the Republican Jewish Coalition. Gab is one of those far-right platforms that just happens to emphasize anti-Semitism, and has particular resonance in PA due to the Pittsburgh synagogue shooter having had a presence on the site and posting his manifesto there. But I had to laugh when the RJC made statements condemning Gab as a “cesspool of bigotry and antisemitism”–as if they care about any other types of bigotry. Certainly, I have never heard them condemn Stephen Miller for his connections with white-nationalist groups like VDARE, much less his racist views and policies. But he’s one of the Tribe, so I guess it’s okay?

  7. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    Or fear that Trump will inflame the mob, and the mob will come after anyone who criticizes Trump with torches and pitchforks.

  8. Sleeping Dog says:


    I was considering current or former office holders and in particular those with designs on the WH. And yes, is should be only Jewish R’s calling trump out.

  9. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: Except for Christy and Asa Hutchinson, no R has called trump out. It’s less, fear of trump, than it is fear of the mob.

    I think it’s ambition more than fear. They want to climb high in the GOP, but they can’t do that if piss on the racist half of the GOP base.

    It will be interesting to see how those with presidential ambitions sell themselves to the MAGA crowd during the primaries and then flip the script for the general.

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: No edit function, wanted to add that maybe I am being too generous when I say, “the racist half of the GOP base.” because even if they aren’t overtly racist, they don’t mind being associated with out and loud racist pos like trump.

  11. MarkedMan says:

    @Kylopod: Remember, in 1970 Nixon’s political strategist felt safe enough in acknowledging the GOP’s tactical racism that he felt free to bluntly outline the Republican strategy. From Wiki:

    Although the phrase “Southern Strategy” is often attributed to Nixon’s political strategist Kevin Phillips, he did not originate it[15] but popularized it.[16] In an interview included in a 1970 New York Times article, Phillips stated his analysis based on studies of ethnic voting:

    “From now on, the Republicans are never going to get more than 10 to 20 percent of the Negro vote and they don’t need any more than that… but Republicans would be shortsighted if they weakened enforcement of the Voting Rights Act. The more Negroes who register as Democrats in the South, the sooner the Negrophobe whites will quit the Democrats and become Republicans. That’s where the votes are. Without that prodding from the blacks, the whites will backslide into their old comfortable arrangement with the local Democrats.”

  12. Kathy says:

    Weekend oddities:

    I bought some ground turkey* online Friday for store pickup. I picked it up on Saturday morning. It took longer than usual, but I thought nothing of it. Later in the day I got an email saying the order was picked up. Then on Sunday another email, and a text, saying the order was cancelled and a refund credited to my card. I answered the text saying I’d picked up the order, but haven’t heard back from them.

    If they want to give me free meat, I won’t say “no.”

    Sunday evening I got an email from Twitter saying someone tried to access my account. Said account I’d deactivated earlier this month, and was on a 30 day countdown to be eliminated. So, I reset the password, didn’t write it down, and reactivated the account.

    I still won’t use it nor give Elon any data to mine, but it may be best to keep it active.

    At least until the Bird is cooked.

    *I made turkey patties with caramelized browned onions, to go with the potatoes with balsamic and ketchup onions. What? No, you can’t have too many onions.

  13. Kathy says:

    I’m currently reading a book about nuclear accidents. Like all incidents involving complex machinery and procedures, there tend to be multiple causes most times. And yet, I think there’s one thing in common in the vast majority of cases.

    This is especially so in the early days of nuclear power, when people experimented with atomic piles and reactors to learn how fission works. It is because of many such experiments, in fact.

    At some point, one has larned, often through painful tragedy, that safeguards are needed. safeguards then get implemented. But if you want to know what happens in certain rare or extreme conditions, you remove or disable the safeguards in order to be able to reach such conditions.

    That’s fair enough. But most times no new safeguards are implemented, or they’re done in a manual, ad-hoc kind of way. The end result is often a release of too much radiation, or a steam explosion that releases too much radiation.

    In aviation, extreme and rare conditions do get tested. A new plane is as capable as going into a spin as any other plane. You need to know how to recover from one. This is an example, but things like that get done in flight testing (after flight testing normal conditions to gauge the actual performance envelope). Yet few flight tests end badly.

    Military aircraft have a spottier record. Perhaps because fighters and other military craft have ejection seats, which can enable the crew to escape from certain death relatively unharmed.

  14. grumpy realist says:

    Another story indicating that the so-called “free speech” of Twitter 2.0 likely isn’t.

    (I don’t know if this should be laid at Musk’s door. But considering the centralisation and “I’ll do everything” that we’ve seen him boasting of, either this is a) due to Musk, or b) it was done by a flunkey who thought this would make Musk happy. Which is the same thing.)

  15. Kathy says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Before the attempt to cancel my Twitter account, I’d wondered whether I should post stuff critical of St. Elon, or downright insulting. Free speech absolutism, right?

    I decided not to bother. I still won’t, but I may follow or support others who go down that road. I wonder if I can change my handle to something like “Thank GOD I’m Not Elon Musk!!1!”

    On other completely unrelated matters, the latest ep of Avenue Five I saw, got really political. There was a revolution, ane lection, and a restoration onboard ship. In one scene, no spoilers, people are trying to manufacture “dirt” on someone who is admittedly a monster.

    The show also reveals what is “The Other President.” I won’t post spoilers, but you may not want to read the next paragraph.

    It involves people named Bezos and Musk.

  16. Dutchgirl says:

    Woke up to images of the eruption of Mauna Loa. I’m not on the same island. It’s been almost 40 years. Lava pooling in caldera, will likely overflow to the southwest. Its news worthy, but nothing to get too worried about… yet.

  17. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    Mo Brooks and Brian Kemp called Trump out today.

  18. MarkedMan says:

    @MarkedMan: It’s worth highlighting the words of the man who actually coined the term “The Southern Strategy”, Republican Senator and party leader Jacob Javits. From his October, 1963 Op Ed that showed the first public use of that term:

    … the radical right will become so structured into the Presidential nomination campaign as to defeat a move to disengage it later on … A candidacy based on the “Southern strategy”, espousing the kind of views I have mentioned, would do more than hazard the party’s defeat in the 1964 contest; it could alienate millions of Americans in 1964 – who could stay alienated for years…

    He recognized, as the eventual victors did not, that embracing the racists was not just a tactic, but instead would poison the party from within as it drove away the decent and reasonable people and the angry and ugly racists had to be given more and more power. The Republican Party today openly embraces the descendants of the Klan and the Nazis.

  19. Kylopod says:

    @MarkedMan: I can’t remember the exact details, but a book I read years ago suggested that the seeds of the Southern Strategy began in the 1950s, when conservatives in the Buckley camp started discussing how they could attract the Dixiecrat vote to the Republican Party (which was already happening to some degree–Eisenhower and Nixon carried several Southern states).

  20. Jax says:

    Hahahaha….boring day here, it’s snowing and blowing outside, so I’ve been perusing local headlines.

  21. CSK says:

    Bill Cassidy just called out Trump.

  22. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Sleeping Dog: I’m not as generous of spirit as you are. I hold that they don’t call out Trump because they actually admire him and are cut from the same racist cloth. As to the mob, they accept the mob, embrace the mob, and have become one with the mob.

  23. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    Not an unreasonable assumption.

  24. Jen says:

    Twitter’s problems continue. Apparently, some employees in the UK and Germany were not paid today as usual (they are paid on the 28th of the month according to this thread about the problems).

  25. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kathy: No, you can’t have too many onions.

    tell that to my wife. She won’t listen to me.

  26. Kathy says:

    We may get to see what a Jewish theocracy looks like.

    Granted I last went to israel in 1985, and things have certainly changed since then, but the bulk of the populace struck me as rather secular, and what I hear from family I have there is this hasn’t changed much. I don’t think they’ll take well to it.

  27. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kathy: but the bulk of the populace struck me as rather secular, and what I hear from family I have there is this hasn’t changed much.

    Can you explain to me then how Bibi and company have taken control? This is an honest question because the voters have put the RWNJs in power.

  28. Kylopod says:


    Can you explain to me then how Bibi and company have taken control? This is an honest question because the voters have put the RWNJs in power.

    I think the Israeli populace as a whole leans rightward on the Palestinian conflict, and that’s what’s enabled Likud to accumulate power and has almost totally destroyed any vestige of a “left” in the country. But on most specific issues they’re highly factionalized, and with their proportional representation system that enables parties with just 3.25% support to win seats in the Knesset, Bibi has had to scrape together a variety of factions to gain a majority. While not personally religious himself, and having in the past opposed many of the demands of fundamentalists, he has over the years increasingly come to support them because he needs them in his coalition. (That might seem to parallel Trump in some ways, but in Bibi’s case I think it’s more of a coldly calculated attempt at power than a narcissistic need for validation from groups that love him.) I have my doubts as to how long he can maintain this without a backlash from voters–this could be their version of Dobbs–but the system has proved so dysfunctional in recent years and acquired so many undemocratic components, I’m far from confident in its ability to check itself at this point.

  29. dazedandconfused says:

    @Jax: Goodness gracious…

  30. CSK says:


    …great balls of fire.

  31. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Jax: If it’s boring in Wyoming, maybe you should consider moving to Arizona or Pennsyltucky.

    Republican officials in two counties in Arizona and Pennsylvania declined on Monday to certify their midterm election results, with some citing concerns about the integrity of the voting system that have become commonplace among conservatives.

    Republicans on the election boards of Cochise County in Arizona and Luzerne County in Pennsylvania voted against motions to certify the election results there.

    Though Cochise County residents voted for GOP gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake and GOP Senate nominee Blake Masters, both candidates ultimately lost their statewide races.

    Luzerne County residents voted for Democratic gubernatorial nominee Josh Shapiro and GOP Senate nominee Mehmet Oz, with Shapiro ultimately winning his bid and Oz falling short statewide. [emphasis added]

    Open question to the Cochise County election officials: Given that your county supported your candidates, how does refusing to certify that they won in your county advance your goals?

  32. Kathy says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    It’s tempting to mock them and bring up the Kraken team of lawyers, but I’ve no idea how many other counties in how many states remain to certify their results, and this stunt may gain imitators here and there.

    Or the imitations may happen next time, when far more is at stake than the results of the pink trickle.

  33. Jax says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: This one really made me snarfle. “Briefly Oral” Eathorne, the head of the Wyoming Republican party, who got busted getting a…cough cough….quick BJ in his police squad car. 😛 😛

  34. Gustopher says:


    I bought some ground turkey* online Friday for store pickup.

    Between the asterisk on “turkey” and the “online” bit I was prepared for a horror show of strange-not-turkey in shocking quantities delivered to your doorstep in an unprofessional manner, all with an insect infestation.

    While I am glad you were not subjected to a horror show, I was a little disappointed to not get to enjoy a story of a horror show.

    Nothing personal, mind you. You aren’t among the top people I would like to see subject to a possibly-poultry related horror. But I would like a good story of moderate misfortune unrelated to the rest of the pains of the world from someone.

  35. Gustopher says:

    @Kathy: maybe instead of ordering 5.00 kg of ground turkey from, you could have inadvertently ordered 500 flightless turkeys which are now overrunning the neighborhood.

  36. Kathy says:


    More like 0.5 kg. of ground turkey.

    But a 0.5 wild turkey would have been a horror show.

    I’m reminded, back in the early 1990 some radio station ran a series of sketches around Xmas about a killer turkey. I recall little of them, but one involved a turkey called Saddam.

    Another station did sketched on the Anti-Santa around that time. He wore black, had a sled pulled by jackals, and took presents from children. But he laughed exactly like the regular Santa.