Unfortunate timing… June 17, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
I have a weird sympathy for Meghan Kelly, writing in the Irish Times as a US Republican married to an Irish person who laments the lack of understanding of Republicans here in this state. It is not that I have any great love for that part of the political spectrum, though give me a thinking conservative any day of the week over unthinking liberals or leftists – though better again lets encourage as many thinking leftists, but it must be odd to land here in a fairly small ‘c’ conservative state (by European terms) and discover so many signed up rather unthinkingly for the Democratic party.
So it is her reasons for being a Republican are well outlined even if you or I would likely take issue with them. She’s a small government, free market, law and order, conservative of sorts. She’s on less sure ground when she suggests she’s a believer in sovereignty and simultaneously American hegemony. And here it is that I think the ground she positions herself on begins to get a bit shaky, particularly by eliding Donald Trump with US Republicanism is a different matter again.
I believe in sovereignty. Yes, this should resound with Europeans questioning the EU and throwing up temporary borders in the midst of a migration crisis. I share Donald Trump’s concerns that sovereignty is not being respected and we have no control over who is coming in and for what purpose, even though it sounds “racist” to superficial ears.
So the next time the words “ignorant” or “dangerous” come to mind when describing Trump or the Republican Party, I hope someone reading this article will realise that these terms are relative. A lot of Americans think the same about the Democratic Party, for valid reason.
The problem being that Trump most categorically is not within the mainstream of US Republican thinking on sovereignty or indeed American hegemony (assuming one thinks that latter is a good thing). Anything but. He is more rather than less isolationist, and while it would be nice to think that Trump is exercised by issues of ‘control’ it is clear that his approach goes way beyond that. And in relation to the other social/economic areas it seems to me Trump is also imperfectly Republican.
I’m tempted to rework the Lloyd Bentsen line: ‘you sir, are no Republican’.
It is perhaps unfortunate that her piece appears the same day as a myriad of reports of how Trump is tanking in polls across the US. Whatever about the US electorate at large, it would appear that a fair chunk of US Republicans aren’t convinced he is one of them either.