Those of us who spent 2017 appalled by the actions of the Trump Administration and the Republican Congress have been asking ourselves a question:
When will the 30% that remain staunch supporters of Trump and the GOP wake up and be appalled with us?
It has been my experience that those 30% of conservative voters are going to have to take it in the teeth from their own party before they wake up.
The tipping point may be the December tax ‘reform’ bill, rammed through after midnight by a GOP majority with no hearings and with hand-written notes and corrections all over it (for God’s sake!). The horror may not appear in January, but maybe by April 15, when Tax Day rolls around. When all those lawyers, doctors and dentists who thought they were in the 1% get slammed with both higher taxes and reduced deductions for State and local taxes, and then have to start passing those costs on to their clients… then we might see some real anguish. Get ready for your doctor’s co-pay amount to rise, your lawyer’s hourly rate to skyrocket and your dentist’s rate card to be reprinted with higher rates.
This has always been the case, this having to take it in the teeth for conservative voters to realize they are getting shafted by their own party. I’m old enough to remember the Reagan tax cuts. Young and working entry-level jobs, I remember thinking how happy I’d be when tax refund time came around, me being in the lowest tax bracket and all. Imagine my surprise when Reagan’s ‘cuts’ added $300 to my tax bill. It was even worse the next year; my income dropped, but my tax bill was even higher than the year before. I was taking home less and less every year that Reagan was in office, as he raised taxes 11 times to make up for those cuts for the rich. Those of us on low end got hit the hardest, of course. It is just the GOP way.
It will be the same this time around. The GOP has decided that there are only two classes of Americans: the rich and everyone else. The rich get whatever they want and the rest of us are expected to take it in the teeth and like it. You can thank the Supreme Court and their Citizen’s United decision for that; now that money counts as speech, we see utter absurdities such as casino owner Sheldon Adelson donating $20 million to one PAC. In this last election cycle alone, some 200 families were responsible for 50% of campaign contributions in the primaries.
Think about that; 200 families had huge influence over who wins and who loses. And you can bet that, when their candidates are in office, those donors are going to demand certain things. Like, the December GOP tax ‘reform’ bill that gave them $1 trillion in benefits. The Republicans certainly came through for their donors; they donated somewhere around $1 billion and they get a trillion back from their tame dogs in Congress.
In the meantime, CHIP goes unfunded, so 9 million kids are at risk of losing access to health care. This would take less than $10 billion, one percent of what the GOP just gave away to the already ultra-wealthy, but apparently preventing kids from dying is too high a price to pay.
And that is just one example in a long year of Republican rapaciousness. In 2018, so may Trump supporters are going to take it in the teeth that I believe we’ll see a Great Awakening among them. It will take some time, but I believe it will happen.
Let’s hope it happens soon enough that we still have a country left to repair.