Princeton historian Sean Wilentz says that from a historical perspective the rise of Donald Trump signals the end of the Republican Party as we know it — and a worrisome new politics.
The End Of A Republican Party
History Lesson: Trump's Rise Might Signal the Collapse of the Republican Party, with Sean WilentzPrinceton historian Sean Wilentz says that from a historical perspective the rise of Donald Trump signals the end of the Republican Party as we know it — and a worrisome new politics. Wilentz's new book is "The Politicians and the Egalitarians: The Hidden History of American Politics." Read more.
Moments of historical change in the course of a party’s life can be difficult to spot. In “Party Ideologies in America, 1828-1996,” political scientist John Gerring marks the beginning of the modern Republican Party as Herbert Hoover’s shifting campaign rhetoric in 1928 and 1932, when he talked more about the virtues of the American home and family than hard-tack economics. Hoover’s oratory about the progress of the individual being threatened by an overzealous government bureaucracy stuck around for the next eight decades, and the wisdom of generations has helped us discern that this was indeed the start of a new Republican era.
The shock of 2016, though, is just how self-evident the inflection point at which the Republican Party finds itself is; Trump is a one-man crisis for the GOP. The party has been growing more conservative and less tolerant of deviations from doctrine over the past decades, so what does it mean that a man who has freely eschewed conservative orthodoxy on policy is now the Republicans’ standard-bearer? Read more.