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Another Lesson from the 2023 Elections

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

By Associate Member Barry Chodak

Last month I posted a piece based on Thomas Paine’s Common Sense. The conclusion was that the Republican Party needed to wake up to the shift in its base and embrace the Populist/Maga movement, or go the way of the Whigs. Both the 2022 and 2023 elections show that the party is still failing to do that.

Some of the obvious factors at work in 2023 are that the donors are only willing to spend money to stop Trump; and that without a Populist/Maga draw, both many Republicans and voters who support Trump will stay home.

But that is simply confirming old news. Today I saw something I had not been paying attention to. I was talking with a long time Republican friend who said “while I like his policies, I just don’t like Trump.” Does that sound familiar? So, I asked him, with that opinion, would you ever go out and ask ten people you know to vote for him and for Republicans? You can guess his answer.

And therein lies the hidden source of low Republican turnouts. Do you need any clearer example? Negativity begets negativity, whether said or unsaid!

Trump’s popularity with the mass of populist voters will likely win the next election but unless the Donors, the long timers, and the entrenched Republicans embrace the shift, the Grand Old Party and America are in for hard times.

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