My father, grandfather and many family members were good old Wyoming Republicans. I don’t recall ever hearing the word “conservative,” but I am pretty sure they would have signed on to that belief system, at least as it used to be defined. They were believers in limited government, responsible government spending, and a leave-me-the-hell-alone attitude about government intrusion in their lives.
Today, I don’t believe they would recognize a Republican Party that is led by a capricious morally corrupt president, supported by an impotent Republican majority Congress in great part comprised of ideologues and political hacks. I am not saying the Democrats are in a whole lot better shape; but they at least don’t have the burden of trying to support this remarkably unprincipled, disorganized and quixotic administration. Sure, politicians sometimes lie and distort the truth, but by any measure Trump’s Republican Party is setting a new standard for fabrication and dissembling. The main problem the Republicans have, in my view, is that Trump is not really a Republican or a conservative (by any definition). He has in the past been a Democrat, an independent and a Republican; been pro-choice and pro-life; been pro-gun control and an NRA toady; and has somehow been able to be on both sides of most issues, sometimes simultaneously. Trump represents one constituency, Donald Trump. He certainly does not represent the Republicans that I have known. They were people with honesty, principle and dignity, something Trump seems to know little about.