The Republican convention confirms that Abraham Lincoln’s party has become a cult personality of Donald Trump, who will stop at nothing to achieve his goals.
One only had to glance at the posters announcing the “Trump Telethon” to realize this.
When a president hustles convention to star every night of his nomination convention, when half of the headliners are family members and personal loyalty to the leader comes first, we can talk about a cult.
Will voters let themselves get carried away?
The program is Trump
To illustrate the transformation of the “Grand Old Party” into a cult of personality, it suffices to note that instead of the traditional “platform”, the Republicans have promised to follow Donald Trump, whatever he does and whatever. ‘he says. Instead of a platform, Republicans endorsed a list of Trump’s 50 “priorities”, a bunch of snippets of partisan speeches and empty promises with no specific terms. This exclusive focus of the party on its leader is apparent in almost every television intervention, where the overbidding of rave reviews and wacky remarks causes a mixture of amazement and giggles.
The festival of resentment
The gist of the message hasn’t really changed since 2016, when Donald Trump managed to cultivate all kinds of resentment to convert just enough Democratic voters to tip a few key states.
Some participants in this Trumpist high mass believe they have to harangue an imaginary crowd by screaming at the top of their lungs. Almost all of them are betting on fear, resentment and prejudice, speaking with such a primary partisan rhetoric that they will only reach converts.
The few elected officials attending this convention appear to have been taken hostage, several big names in the party are boycotting the event and some are determined to back Biden. Meanwhile, the president opens the door wide to cracked QAnon plotters.
The fooled voters?
Normally, a party would expect its support to come back following the convention. That didn’t happen to Joe Biden, who kept his eight to ten point lead in the polls, and it probably won’t happen to Donald Trump. Yet this is the bet made by the president, who expects to repeat his comeback of 2016 by highlighting the dystopian statements and grandiloquent promises that are his trademark. It won’t convince many people, but this convention confirms that Trump is prepared to flout the standards and laws that should normally ensure the integrity of the electoral process.
Illegally using the White House at taxpayer expense as the backdrop for his partisan spectacle, Trump signals that he will stop at nothing to use his executive powers he believes to be unlimited to aid his re-election. The majority of voters are not fooled. It remains to be seen whether it will be able to pronounce itself without too many obstacles.