Conservative New York Times columnist David Brooks ripped the GOP in a new column, writing that the party is “doing harm to every cause it purports to serve.”
In an editorial titled “The GOP is Rotting,” published Friday, Brooks accuses lawmakers of bending to Trump’s desires, writing that Trump is “defined by shamelessness,” and that there is “no end” to what the president will ask of Republicans.
“First, he asked the party to swallow the idea of a narcissistic sexual harasser and a routine liar as its party leader,” Brooks writes. “Then he asked the party to accept his comprehensive ignorance and his politics of racial division. Now he asks the party to give up its reputation for fiscal conservatism. At the same time he asks the party to become the party of Roy Moore, the party of bigotry, alleged sexual harassment and child assault.”
Brooks warns that next, Trump may ask Republicans to accept his firing of special counsel Robert Mueller, which, “after some sighing, they will.”
Brooks refers to the relationship between Trump and the GOP as a “corrupt bargain,” and suggests that Trump owns the party’s “soul.”
He notes several causes that he says the Republican Party has tainted through accepting Trump’s actions, and endorsement of Moore in the Alabama Senate race in particular, such as the pro-life cause, which he says will be “forever associated with moral hypocrisy on an epic scale.”
“You don’t help your cause by wrapping your arms around an alleged sexual predator and a patriarchic bigot,” Brooks writes. “You don’t help your cause by putting the pursuit of power above character, by worshiping at the feet of some loutish man or another, by claiming the ends justify any means.”
Brooks goes on to slam populism for abandoning the “intellectual excellence” of the GOP of decades past, writing that the current status quo of the party has alienated many people who no longer feel they can call themselves Republicans.
“The rot afflicting the G.O.P. is comprehensive — moral, intellectual, political and reputational,” he writes. “More and more former Republicans wake up every day and realize: ‘I’m homeless. I’m politically homeless.’ ”