Will Rogers used to get a lot of laughs telling crowds, “I don’t belong to any organized political party; I’m a Democrat.”

He could make the same claim today, substituting Republican for Democrat, but it wouldn’t provoke a hint of laughter because there’s nothing the least bit funny about what’s happening now in the upper echelons of the GOP.

It may be amusing to supporters of Hillary Clinton, the obvious beneficiary of this Republican internecine battle, but it’s repugnant to anyone on either side of the political aisle who still believes “governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

That’s basic civics, as meat and potatoes as you can get in understanding how we do business here in America when it comes to choosing our leaders.

So it is that on that one day of the year we call Election Day, citizens get to call the shots, which is how Donald Trump got to be where he is today.

He did not become the GOP’s presumptive presidential nominee by staging a coup or subverting the rules or duping voters with sleight-of-hand shenanigans.

Indeed, he was as transparent as you can get, calling evil by its name — radical Islamic terrorism — while our current commander in chief prefers to think of ISIS as “a JV team.” Talk about different world views!

Trump’s bombast, whatever you may think of it, touched a nerve in this nation’s electorate; he connected with Americans by telling them what they’ve been longing to hear.

That’s how he got to where here is today. There’s no mystery to it. Millions of Americans took the time to listen, then took the time to vote.

They’re the reason Trump is where he is today. It’s called vox populi, the voice of the people.

By the time self-absorbed Republican honchos realized a monster had been created, one they couldn’t control, they had been boxed into a corner. They could either acknowledge the obvious appeal of this phenomenon and throw their support behind him, or attempt to nullify the verdict of voters by disenfranchising them, saying their opinions do not matter.

And they don’t even feel a need to manufacture this plot in a smoky back room; they’re brazenly seeking to impose their will in broad daylight, unapologetically.

It’s ugly to watch.

On her best day, Hillary couldn’t damage the GOP half as much as it is damaging itself right now.

What a shame for those who urgently long to see America move in a different direction.


(c)2016 the Boston Herald

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