Today’s GOP reminds me of the Minute Maid Orange Center

If you are over 30 years old, you probably recognize the famous black and orange canister that was in many of our freezers and supermarkets: maid minute Concentrated orange juice can.

Developed in the 1940s to safely ship Vitamin C to our troops in World War II, it was so named because it was made well in one minute by adding water and stirring. It’s no longer everywhere, but my memories of taking a wooden spoon and water into thick, orange, frozen ice cylinders come to life like a brown, other brown Fisher-Price cassette player and a pogo ball. Wanted and quickly tired of.

I’ve been thinking about orange juice a lot lately, believe it or not. In conversations with friends and colleagues about the state of Republican politics in America, it seems to me an appropriate metaphor. Where the party was defined by Lee Atwater’s “big tent”—a mix of moderates, the religious right, debt hawks, war hawks, liberals, etc.—the Republican Party today looks and acts like a can of concentrated orange juice.

Party leaders are no longer interested in adding water to their cultivation, making them drinkable, and making them last longer and taste better. Instead, the idea is to stay focused on its most effective form, even if that means it’s leaner, sour, and harder on the stomach.

Of the 293 Republicans who served in Congress at Trump’s inauguration, almost half Of those who have left, retire or resign. From Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona to Senator Pat Tommy of Pennsylvania and Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois to Representative Justin Amash of Illinois, lawmakers with reliable conservative voting records have either been groomed by Trump candidates, left as a result of Trump polluting the party or have been fired virtually.

And some, like Representative Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, one of 10 Republican members of the House of Representatives who voted to impeach Trump for the second time, Quote Relentless death threats against his family as one of the reasons for his early retirement.

While they were under pressure for their lack of loyalty to what Trumpism demands at the moment, there were crooks and charlatans such as Rep. Lauren Bubert (Colorado), Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (Georgia), and Rep. Madison Cawthorne (NC) with varying degrees of open arms.

The bleeding and systematic purge of Republican lawmakers has left the GOP party an undiluted curd of Trump’s worst and most corrosive impulses. Conspiracy theories, bigotry and white nationalism, xenophobia and violent populism, and stupid culture wars about Big Bird and masculinity, all that remains now.

The party — unconcerned with facts or reality, no longer concerned with distractions that were as trivial as the addition of new electors, and unburdened by inconveniences like principles — was now free to focus only on focusing the base on its purest and most rabid form.

This project manifests itself everywhere in which the party has influence.

Increasingly right-wing media purification. On Fox News, two remaining conservatives from the Old Guard, Jonah Goldberg and Stephen Hayes, Resigned Sunday on the “Patriot Purge” documentary by Tucker Carlson, which absurdly suggests that the January 6 rebellion was a false flag. Longtime host Brett Baer was asked if he was upset with the movie and I acknowledge, reluctantly, “You know, I mean, there were definitely concerns about that.”

In an effort to compete with Trump supporters, Fox News alternatives like Newsmax and OANN are offering a more extreme diet, not a more moderate one.

Once a bastion of conservative thought and policy making, the Conservative Political Action Conference is little more than a trampaloosa that is defined more by who has been proudly dismissed. CPAC organizers last year announce Senator Mitt Romney “was not officially invited.” Next year, no Sesame Street Allowed characters. This is a real thing.

And despite the obvious, that Trump lost Republicans in the Senate, the House and the White House in just four years, Republicans seem committed to getting him back on the 2024 card.

Trump Job approval It went from 49% favorable in May 2020 to 34% in January 2021.

According to the new Marquette Law School voteOnly 28% of voters want Trump to be nominated again, and 71% don’t.

But the focus of the base was intentional Effect. Trump still has an 86% positive rating among Republicans. 67% want him to run again. trump Lead His closest competitor in the hypothetical 2024 poll has a score of 37 points. And President Biden’s poll numbers leave much to be desired.

So, how does it end? While republican rule shrink In size, he only cares about becoming more powerful on the inside. This could be a winning strategy in the next election, but I bet that in time, like cans of orange juice themselves, the GOP’s strategy will be hard to swallow, and even more difficult to find.

SE Cupp is the host of “SE Cupp: Unfiltered” on CNN.

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