Republicans have abandoned the principles that make US democracy work | Lee Dratman

Ah Less than a century after US President Woodrow Wilson promised to “safe the world for democracy” by deploying troops in World War I, the United States is now democratizing its own country. Fighting to stay safe.

An image of the January 6th US Capitol siege brilliantly illustrates the vulnerability of US democracy. A violent mob with the red flag of Trump looted the seat of government after taking control of police alongside a swarm of extremist insignia and attending a nearby Trump rally. Republican parliamentary leaders Calculate if, after the first shallow quarrel to condemn Donald Trump’s role in the rally, silence, they close their ears, look away, and instead wage a “cultural war.” This is most clearly reflected in the Republican Party’s refusal to support a bipartisan committee investigating the events of January 6.To make matters worse, some were elected Republican By recreating the mob like a peaceful tourist, it rewrote history at record speed. In the long history of democracy’s decline, sound a clear alarm if partisan leaders refuse to respond to violent behavior by their supporters, effectively tolerate and welcome them. Can be done.

But even more worrisome are the initiatives that many Republican-controlled states have enacted since January 6 to reduce the voting methods preferred by Democratic voters and put pressure on election managers to avoid them. These changes are a transparent attempt to make it more difficult. Democratic Party To win the election. However, Republicans cite unproven claims of “fraud” and argue that they are simply trying to ensure “election integrity.” Still, respected election experts say in 2020. Elections are extremely safe and have repeatedly declared that there are no major frauds. Trump, on the other hand, is slamming falsehoods, filling insults and looming with amazing adhesiveness.

Democracy as a government system has evolved and changed considerably since the 1789 vintage, but has proven to be very long-term in the United States. For a significant part of the reason, whatever its disappointment or shortcomings, the American political elite accepts the basic principles of democracy: the legitimacy of political opponents, and political parties can lose in fair and legitimate elections. It continues to be accepted. In fact, it uses power to limit the civil liberties and voting rights of political opponents, declares losses in elections unjustified, and responds with violence. It means not to do it.

Some elected Republicans have rewritten history at record speed by rewriting the January 6 mob as resembling a peaceful tourist. Photo: Julio Cortez / AP

The 2021 Republican Party, especially its leaders, abandoned these principles. At the national level, they have refused to accept the legitimacy of the 2020 election results and have encouraged or tolerated violence. At the state level, they have abused their ability to change rules in ways that limit voting rights. These anti-democratic sentiments have been built within the party for years, but the 2021 event transformed the Republican Party into a genuine non-Liberal Party, and as we know it was in the United States. It shows that it has become a serious threat to the continuation of democracy.

Given the widespread popularity of the Republican Party, it is difficult to tackle the challenges raised by the Republican Party. As Trump and his supporters like to point out, 74 million Americans are voting for him, and 74 million Americans cannot be easily ignored. About the same number of Republican candidates voted for state and federal public office.

But part of the reason for this support is that in the two-party system of the United States, voters have only two effective options. For voters who don’t sympathize with the Democratic Party, there is only one option. Because there is only one option, Republican politicians and strategists have been ineligible for Democrats as radical and radicalists in recent decades to leave themselves as the only option for many voters. I have worked especially hard. Immigrant sentiment and long-standing racial resentment of uneducated whites. Republicans also have strong justifications to prevent Democrats from winning elections by framing the Democrats as immigrants and black Marxist cadres who want to radically reshape America. Historically, anti-democratic parties have frequently used this type of high-risk battle to maintain national identity and character as a sham to unite power.

In the short term, Democrats must use a limited majority to guarantee and protect their voting rights and to pass democratic reforms that ban state partisan election operations. In particular, Democrats must pass comprehensive People’s Law and John Lewis Voting Rights Act, which legally ban the most anti-democratic initiatives the Republicans are pursuing and fund elections. And more broadly regulate ethics. This mitigates some of the most urgent threats.

But even with these reforms, American democracy cannot yet survive without the Conservative Party, which promises free and fair elections and the basic principles of democracy. This leaves three possibilities. The first is the Republican Party, which has managed to return to “normal.” But as the most non-free Trumpist elements continue to emerge within the party, and Republicans elected at the state and national levels continue to emphasize the fighting and conspiracy theories of divisive cultural warfare. A return seems as unlikely as an alien invasion.

The second possibility is the complete collapse of the Republican Party and the emergence of a more rational new party to replace it. This also seems very fancy given the nature of the American electoral system’s winner-take-all and a severe obstacle to emerging third parties.

This leaves a third possibility. The second round of voting reform will remove the single-winner constituency, spawn new political parties, and allow representatives to be acquired through proportional representation multi-member constituencies. Under such a system, a new centre-right party that is committed to democracy and is not trapped in white dissatisfaction may emerge. This may seem unlikely, either. This is the only viable path. The two-party system works only with the two parties that believe in democracy. If one stops believing, the center can no longer be held. The only way to maintain American democracy in the long run may be to rebuild it in the short run.

Republicans have abandoned the principles that make US democracy work | Lee Dratman

Source link Republicans have abandoned the principles that make US democracy work | Lee Dratman

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