But where was the GOP’s outrage when the citizenship of the president of the United States was challenged? Where was the righteous indignation over the active effort by Republicans to delegitimize the authority of President Obama? There is no place in our country for talk like that. Yet, despite all evidence proving Obama was not an illegal occupant of the Oval Office, the GOP let the racist birther lie fester. Many Republican leaders who knew better looked the other way. When Trump made it the foundation of what many thought would be a presidential run last time around, there was no tut-tutting from the RNC.
And think about this. Even though it knows that it needs Latino votes to win the 2016 presidential election, the RNC couldn’t even muster such a public response to Trump’s “They’re rapists” remark about illegal immigrants. Rather than a deserved public rebuke for such an inflammatory comment, RNC chairman Reince Priebus was reduced to privately pleading with The Donald to “tone it down” on immigration.
In this kerfuffle over Trump’s slam of McCain, the problems of the Republican Party are in high relief. It is saddled with a loud mouth who will say anything and is getting substantial support for doing so, no matter how callous. And its selective outrage — quick response on McCain and crickets on anything else — only enhances its image as a party that couldn’t care less about anyone who isn’t white, Southern, straight or male. If the GOP’s goal is to never win the White House again, it’s off to a great start.
Follow Jonathan on Twitter: @Capehartj