On the other hand, this dynamic clearly can no longer exist. The people in control of the Republican Party - the financial donors, the seasoned consultants, the elected veterans of too many Congressional terms - are no longer in sync with their actual voting base of low-education poor White Males. It turns out all the fearmongering and Establishment-bashing the party elites kept telling their followers via the Far Right news channels and websites made those followers fear and hate their own self-entitled party bosses. It's all leading up to the near certainty of a thin-skinned, narcissistic con artist pitching the basest form of race-baiting and immigrant-bashing by the name of Trump winning enough delegates this week to clinch a commanding lead for the Republican nomination for President.
This is the kind of personal betrayal in a relationship that ends up with both sides in tears...
All said and done though, I doubt the GOP really blows apart. Neither side of this potential break-up will last long outside of the existing organizational charts...
Well, color me optimistic.
Donald Trump declared war on the Republican establishment Tuesday, lashing out at House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (Wis.), Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and other GOP elected officials as his supporters geared up to join the fight amid extraordinary turmoil within the party just four weeks before Election Day.
One day after Ryan announced he would no longer campaign on Trump’s behalf, the GOP nominee said as part of a barrage of tweets that the top-ranking Republican is “weak and ineffective” and is providing “zero support” for his candidacy. Trump also declared that “the shackles have been taken off” him, liberating him to “fight for America the way I want to...”
...But (the Republican leadership) are suddenly dealing with another problem: an impulsive and bellicose businessman with an army of loyal supporters willing to exact retribution against elected officials they feel have abandoned them. The rift could have profound ramifications for the Republican Party as a whole, shattering any sense of unity and jeopardizing its chances of holding onto the Senate and even, potentially, the House...
The logic Ryan and the other senior Republicans are working from is trying to isolate themselves from the sinking ship that is Trump's Presidential hopes. The polling after the first two debates have swung wide towards Hillary. The 2005 Hollywood Access tape where Trump boasts of sexually assaulting women and getting away with it for being a rich celebrity was a shocking rebuke to the Republicans' failed attempts to sell themselves as the high-ground moralists.
The public response to that video has been harsh, and among women voters it's been the final straw to dump Trump. Considering women voters make up the largest voting bloc in terms of turnout, the Republicans who take polling serious are trying to find a safe spot to keep their cushy incumbent jobs.
Problem is, in the process Ryan and the others risk alienating their own Republican voting base. Trump's not thrilled about the "betrayal" from Ryan or McCain or any of the others, and Trump's staffers and proxies are all selling the idea of ignoring the down-ballot seats... meaning no votes for the Senate and House candidates up for election.
Given that their gerrymandered districts are skewed in order to exploit their Far Right voting base, having that base refuse to show up and vote for you - which is what Trump is asking them to do - makes such "safe" districts useless to House Republicans. The 55 percent "safe district" advantage over the Democrats' 27 percent disappears and every Red district is in play.
The Ace of Spades - Far Rightist blogger - site is already calling on Ryan's Wisconsin voters to tab the Democratic candidate in revenge.
As long as the Democrats can encourage voter turnout greater than Republican turnout, the odds of winning the Senate alongside Hillary winning the Presidency become much likelier. If Trump voters stick to their anger against ANY Establishment figure that failed in their fealty, the odds of Republicans losing the US House (and a lot more state legislatures) also becomes likelier.
This is where the sinking ship isn't just with Trump at the helm, it's with half the Republican Party queuing for the lifeboats as the good ship RNC Trumptanic snaps in two during the sinking. (Yes, I am totally stealing this meme from The Daily Show)
The only thing that can save the Republican Party entirely is the ingrained partisan nature of their own voters to habitually vote (R) no matter what. Ryan may be counting on that to pull out enough support to eke out their survival and remain as incumbents.
But all it takes is a big enough drop in turnout to kill the incumbents.
And they're already booing Ryan at his rallies. Their own Speaker.
Eric Cantor probably should call Ryan in a few weeks to offer his condolences.