I spoke to the BBC‘s Anthony Zurcher about where the GOP is headed in the wake of the Trump presidency.
With his victory, he became the Republican establishment – and all but the most recalcitrant never-Trumpers eventually bent to his will.
They bent, according to Liam Donovan, a Republican lobbyist and former Senate campaign strategist, because that’s where the party membership took them. Trump appointed top party officials, like Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel. And at the state and local level, Republican Party officials are Trump true believers.
“The state party leaders are the activists, not the elite,” says Donovan. “The rank and file are hardcore Republicans, and hardcore Republicans are hardcore Trump people. He has absolutely converted them.”
Donovan isn’t so sure Republicans can – or even will want to – turn back the clock.
“What Trump proved is being a slave to whatever conservative orthodoxy says is not necessary or even necessarily advantageous,” he says.
Trump ran against free trade, open immigration and an aggressive foreign policy, and was an ardent critic of cutting Social Security. Other Republican politicians might decide Trump has proven that heterodoxy isn’t so risky.
“A lot of people are playing with different things Trump has done,” he says, “but I don’t think anyone has figured it out yet.”
They may not have to figure it out, however. Even after all the events of recent days, Donald Trump may not be done yet.
Read the full piece here.