Vox Writer: Republican Elite’s Opposition to Trump ‘Has Basically Nothing to Do With…Trump's Racism’

According to Vox’s Dylan Matthews, Donald Trump attracts a highly diverse group of foes. Some of them (mostly Democrats and independents) find racism appalling, but others (notably some prominent Republicans) are fine with it as long as it’s packaged in a certain way.

In a Wednesday article, Matthews remarked that even though GOPers such as Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney have sharply criticized Trump, they’re “lining up behind a candidate who [also] relies on white supremacist sentiment and fear to drive his support. His name just happens to be Ted Cruz.” Therefore, concluded Matthews, “the Republican #NeverTrump movement has basically nothing to do with sincere concern about Trump's racism. If it did, that would also rule Cruz out of contention.”

From Matthews’s piece (bolding added):

[Bush] sounds like he's objecting to…Trump's racism, his demonization of Muslims and other vulnerable minorities, and his appeal to base white nationalist sentiment.

But the fact that Bush is endorsing Cruz suggests his opposition to Trump isn't about anti-racism at all…By endorsing Cruz as an acceptable candidate, Bush is…confirming that #NeverTrump has very little to do with opposing Trump's underlying racist ideas…

…Cruz endorsed using police to racially profile and harass Muslim Americans…

…Cruz takes advice from notorious anti-Muslim bigot Frank Gaffney, who has said that President Obama "not only identifies with Muslims, but actually may still be one himself" and has accused everyone from Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin to Grover Norquist of being part of Muslim Brotherhood schemes to infiltrate the US government…

Another Cruz adviser…is retired Lt. Gen. William "Jerry" Boykin, who first came to fame in 2003 when he said of a Muslim warlord in Somalia, "I knew that my God was a real God, and his was an idol"…

…Republican elites like…Bush, Mitt Romney, and Lindsey Graham are all lining up behind [Cruz]…

Their endorsements clarify that the Republican #NeverTrump movement has basically nothing to do with sincere concern about Trump's racism. If it did, that would also rule Cruz out of contention. The fact that Cruz is somehow acceptable suggests that the real root of the anti-Trump loathing is something else…

…[T]he thing that concerns Democrats and many independents about Trump is that he is a racist and an Islamophobe who relies on white supremacist sentiment and fear to drive his support.

But Jeb Bush, Mitt Romney, and the like are also lining up behind a candidate who relies on white supremacist sentiment and fear to drive his support. His name just happens to be Ted Cruz.

Tom Johnson
Tom Johnson
Tom Johnson is a contributing writer for NewsBusters