Will fleeing Republicans join the Democrats?

It seems like a preposterous idea.

But there was a time when both parties had conservative and liberal wings. And the current leader of the Democratic Party is, by almost any reasonable measure, a moderate. And it’s hard to see traditional Republicans making common cause — or being seen with — Proud Boys, QAnon freaks, and gun-wielding conspirators plotting to kidnap and murder politicians.

The Democratic National Committee is making the pitch to defectors from the Trumpublican Party. “If former Republicans are looking for a party with a broad and diverse membership — a party that is working to unify the country and build back better — they need look no further than the Democratic Party,” their spokesman pronounced. (Read story and watch video ad here.)
To make that work, the Democrats will have to rein in their progressive supporters, without losing their support, and not run off wandering Republican lost souls with an anti-business agenda, defense cuts, or other policies sure to turn them off. Even then, it might not work; after all, these people are Republicans because they disagree with Democrats.
But they don’t really have a place to go. The track record to date of third parties born of dissatisfaction with the two major parties is that they neither elect candidates to office nor last very long. The two major parties are really dug in, and their dominance of American politics appears unassailable, although we’ve never seen a hijacking of a major party like this before.
A lot of them likely will remain registered Republicans and hope for better days. Some will declare themselves “independents” — but who are they going to vote for? The increasingly radical, crazy, and detached-from-reality kooks now defeating the sober-minded old guard in GOP primaries? If the Democrats are merely a voice of reason amid the chaos unleashed by Trump, and not too anti-business, that might be enough for Republicans-in-exile who just want things to work, and don’t want our country to fall apart.

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  1. Mark Adams #

    How does the Democratic party accommodate the leaders of these Rhinos? The John Kaisics? The Mitt Romney? With the defectors you get the leaders who are disaffected. The never Trumpers get purged, because they must go into the wilderness or swear fealty. The Democratic party picks them up, but the fault lines in the party will rumble with disgruntled progressives. Then again maybe the oligarchs control both major parties so it may not really matter. Same policies supporting the oligarchs whether the President is Biden, Trump, HaRRIS OR Romney.

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