Perry Schumacher is right about what has been happening to the Republican party (Re: Rebel and tea party takeover) but lacks some understanding of history.
I still remember questioning a wise old New York Times publisher (back when the Times was the greatest newspaper in the land) whether he saw a time coming when Conservatives would coalesce in the Republican party and Liberals in the Democrat party. His response: “No, because in American history parties have never been about ideology, but about electing candidates”. Their ideology evolves as a result of activity, working together in the party to get their candidates elected.
It’s true we adopted folks like John Hoeven, despite his earlier family background. It is also true we spurned endorsement of Bill Langer and Usher Burdick at our convention, as a matter of principle.
When I decided to cast my lot in a run for the legislature, I was more of a free market Libertarian, and didn’t really want to be a Republican. But politics is a science of the possible and I could never be a Democrat. So I did what I had to do to get elected and to try accomplish that which was my philosophy.
Now I’m a retired activist, one of those guys Perry hates, because “science of the possible” is still my mantra. For me I’m all about stopping Hillary, and I would endorse a yellow dog if it could beat her.
I don’t give Perry’s friends their cocky bragging rights for overthrowing the system. I think the advent of state voter caucuses and primaries has done that. But I’m totally convinced the endorsement of a Donald Trump or a Bernie Sanders would (or will) be a short lived exercise in surrendering he presidency, and with it conservative control of the Supreme Court.
If and when that happens Trump and his supporters will disappear, since they really have no interest in working within a system, and the party faithful will be talking about how to get back in the business of persuading people to vote for their future candidates. If history repeats itself they will also lose control of Congress. Remember. It was the nomination of Goldwater, and his crushing defeat which also gave away control of Congress, that permitted Lyndon Johnson to pass the largest liberal agenda since Roosevelt during the Great Depression. Remember? They called it the Great Society.
The Donald has enormous appeal to his followers, but can never attract any centrist votes. Matter of fact, I know many who have voted for Republicans all their life, and will not vote for him.
So I still hope Republicans can find a way to derail Trump and the certain result of another Goldwater disaster. Consider this: Kasich is a tried and true conservative and a successful governor in one of the five crucial swing states. With a Rubio or a Jeb Bush as a vice-president, he could also capture Florida, another swing state. Alas. That’s back to trying to win elections.