Donald Trump’s Indiana victory and now unstoppable march toward the Republican presidential nomination underscores the defining feature of this year’s general election. Linda Burnham’s Notes on the Election cut to the chase:
“Straight up racism and xenophobia have moved from the margins into the center of the GOP presidential campaign; they are used as a rallying cry to attract discontented voters; and white racial solidarity is exposed as the anchor and heart of right wing politics in the U.S. across the spectrum from ordinary conservatism to rabid white supremacy.”
A victory for the GOP nominee would likely mean right-wing control of all branches of the federal government (combined with the 31 governorships and state legislatures they already control). It would deal a huge blow to progressive policies, social movements, and all of the 99%.
At the same time, divisions within the GOP; revulsion at GOP bigotry and crudeness by an apparent majority of the U.S. people; and the surge of progressive energy that runs from Occupy through the Bernie Sanders campaign and the Black Lives Matter, Fight for 15 and other social movements means there are good prospects to defeat the right. In fact, there is a reasonable chance of an anti-Trump landslide and the possibility of a roll back of GOP strength in both houses of Congress and numerous state governments. Although the far right has reached the height of its power in recent decades, it is also extremely vulnerable to counter-attack and division.
The perilous consequences of a Trump presidency should be a wake-up call for the left. The possibility of dealing the racist right a major blow should energize and excite us.