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Robert E Kelly
The last few weeks of the Trump Show have been more awful than usual but also inadvertently revelatory @ Trump's coalition.If you've paid attention, you've suspected this stuff for a long time,but bc T says the quiet parts out loud,a lot of GOP masks have definitively dropped: /1
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
1. Gun rights advocates now clearly think that routine massacres are an acceptable price to pay for access to long guns. The president's teleprompter speech was so forced & hackneyed, & his desperation to blame anything - video games, mental health, the culture, hate - except /2
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
easy gun access, was so transparent, that no one serious will ever buy that stuff again. That doesn't mean gun control will happen - Fox and empty-state senators will see to that - but at least the 'debate' is over. The insincerity of these arguments is now undeniable. The NRA /3
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
& co. now clearly prioritize gun ownership over public safety, and they will say anything to defend a capacious reading of the 2A. 2. A lot of Trump voters are racist. Again, this wasn't too hard to figure out before; the tea party pretty clearly wasn't motivated by limited /4
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
government. But Trump has ripped the mask off, just as he did with his blatantly fatuous speech on the shootings. Journalists have danced around calling the president racist for 2 years and have hedged for decades on racism as a motivation despite stuff like Willy Horton and /5
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
the Southern strategy. Those days are now over. 'Economic anxiety' is the standard talking point to deflect this. That is impossible to invoke after 'send her back' caused no drop in Trump's approval rating. It is apparent now that Trump wants the GOP to be like theNat'l Front /6
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
3. Evangelicals couldn't care less about personal virtue. Here's another Trump 'silver lining': Trump's personal behavior is so appalling - spiteful, mean-spirited, selfish, adulterous - that evangelical support for him auto-demolishes any ethical/virtue argument they make. We /7
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
never need to take moralistic arguments from religious conservatives seriously again. They're just another interest group now, with no principled belief in elevating our debased politics. I find this sell-out the most disappointing. There is something noble in the notion that /8
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
politicians should strive for personal virtue. But evangelicals sold their soul to Trump for judges & access. 4. It's all about the tax-cuts and judges. Trump is woefully unfit for the office. Lots of retired GOP officials, like Boehner and Ryan, pretty clearly see that. But /9
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
they swallowed all the racism, misogyny, narcissism, norm-busting,& so on just for that juicy 2017 tax cut to their donors. Again,you probably suspected plutocracy before. W's 2001 & 2003 tax cuts were upwardly redistributive too. But Trump is so awful that the Congressional /10
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
GOP's willingness to stand with him anyway has starkly revealed its donor class preferences. 5. Budgetary restraint is for Democratic presidents only. Trump's keynesianism, exploding deficits, & bullying of the Fed for low interest rates to help him get re-elected are now /11
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
so obvious as to be undeniable. Again, you kind of already knew this, but maybe the tea party was serious and Romney and Ryan really did think we were becoming Greece. Well that story is gone now too. Trump deficit spends with such abandon, that this GOP plank is revealed as /12
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
insincere also. Kinda makes you wonder what's left? Trump is woefully unfit & a terrible president, but his inability to lie convincingly is weirdly useful, ideologically at least. Yes, Trump lies and flim-flams all the time, but he when he does, he almost always signals his /13
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
insincerity via his body language. He says the right stuff for a moment - at Charlottesville or after the shootings - but in such a fake, reading-from-the-teleprompter manner that you can easily decipher his true beliefs. This inability to mouth appropriate platitudes, to lie /14
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
convincingly, has inadvertently revealed a lot about the GOP coalition and destroyed a lot of its most useful pretenses, e.g., crime, not race, is the concern, or mental health is the culprit of gun violence. This myth-busting is a 'progress' of a sort, which the GOP will /15
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Robert E Kelly Aug 7
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
come to regret after Trump is gone and no one knows what it stands for besides racism and upper income tax cuts. Aligning with Trump is a faustian bargain, and the bill will come due. But by demolishing useful, deflective GOP myths, Trump is accelerating that reckoning. END
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Michael Bayer Aug 8
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
Thank you for this outstanding thread. It's not just evangelicals. Much of the Catholic leadership has made the same bargain. Check this out:
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Robert E Kelly Aug 8
Replying to @mbayer1248
Yeah, that's right. Living in Asia, I am distant from the US church now, but I have picked that up. Thank you.
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David Leheny Aug 8
Replying to @Robert_E_Kelly
Great thread, Robert. Meant to write that 15 hours ago but got the “turn off your phones for takeoff” announcement. I’m probably more gleeful than you at the exposure of white evangelicals’ hypocrisy, but I think this is a spot-on summary of where we are in 2019.
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Robert E Kelly Aug 8
Replying to @David_Leheny
There is a kind of delicious hypocrisy revelation there, but it’s also tragic in its own way. When I worked for the Ohio GOP, I knew lots of evangelicals who volunteered bc they really seemed to believe it - on abortion, on Clinton’s behavior. I did get the vibe regularly that /1
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