Populist conservative icon Pat Buchanan has declared victory within the Republican Party, saying “The Bush party has become a Trump party” on the key issues of immigration, trade, and staying out of foreign wars.
During the weekly show The McLaughlin Group, Buchanan—a pioneer of the economic nationalist movement—said the war within the “conservative movement” was “over,” saying President Trump’s agenda of economic nationalism has finally beat out decades of free trade, open borders, and global interventionist dogma favored by the Republican establishment and neoconservative wing of the party.
BUCHANAN: It’s over Tom. The Bush party has become a Trump party. What the Republican Party is, basically, it is a Reagan party on issues like taxes, and guns, and judges and things like that, it remains that. However, on the new issues, the populist conservative issues—control of the border, immigration, economic nationalism versus free trade, staying out of foreign wars that get us entangled and bleeding and accomplish nothing, ‘America First’—[the GOP] has become the Trump party now. [Emphasis added]
Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page agreed with Buchanan that the GOP on the issues of immigration, trade, and foreign wars had ditched the globalist policies of former President George W. Bush.
PAGE: First of all, congratulations Pat. As I’ve said before: the party of Trump is the party of Buchanan. Trump came into it without ideology. But when he does express it, he tends to lean toward Buchanan. I mean, you had the Buchanan fence, he’s got the wall. [Emphasis added]
Buchanan also slammed neoconservative commentator Bill Kristol, saying, “He’s a neocon and a ‘Never Trumper,’ excuse me.”
The declaration by Buchanan came following the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), which featured a slew of economic nationalist speakers—including Trump, himself—such as Sebastian Gorka, France’s Marion Le Pen, Fox News’ Laura Ingraham, and Britain’s Nigel Farage.
As Breitbart News reported, CPAC attendees were avidly opposed to the views of open borders wing of the Republican and Democratic Party establishments, booing down a speaker when he suggested that illegal aliens from Mexico are natural-born conservatives.
CPAC attendees also fiercely defended Marion Le Pen—whose aunt, Marine Le Pen, is the leader of France’s economic nationalist party, the Front National—when ‘Never Trump’ National Review columnist Mona Charen smeared the Le Pen family, Breitbart London reported.
“The only reason she was here is she’s named Le Pen. And the Le Pen name is a disgrace,” Charen said as CPAC attendees booed her down in defense of Marion.
Most recent polling shows Americans—and specifically Republican voters—are aligned to economic nationalism when it comes to immigration and trade.
On trade, a Rasmussen Reports poll released this month found that Americans are increasingly supportive of tariffs to protect U.S. industries such as steel and lumber, as well as American jobs, against rapid globalization.
Once a hot-spot for free-traders, this year CPAC opted to ditch its renowned support for endless free trade, inviting Bill Walton, a former Trump transition team member, to speak on the issue in which he demanded the Trump administration to act quickly and strong against China.
Walton said at CPAC:
For conservatives, how does allowing China to constantly rig trade in its favor advance the core conservative goal of making markets more efficient. [Emphasis added]
The State Department has seen advancing American economic and business interests as beneath them. While we have our own fair share of special interest cronyism in the United States, nevertheless we have largely trusted the market to advance our interests.
I am emphatically not recommending that we engage in a trade war or any kind of war with China. What I do believe is that we need to recognize this issue and develop strategies to deal with Chinese mercantilism that will benefit all Americans. [Emphasis added]
On immigration, as Breitbart News reported, a Harvard-Harris poll last week revealed that GOP voters now say reducing overall immigration to the United States should be the second-greatest priority for Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress.
Second biggest issue for GOP voters (including those who didn't even vote for Trump): Reducing illegal and legal immigration. https://t.co/CD9WsH7zVw
— John Binder 👽 (@JxhnBinder) February 22, 2018
Last month’s Harvard-Harris poll found that more Americans support zero immigration to the U.S. than they support current legal immigration levels, whereby between one to 1.5 million mostly low-skilled legal immigrants are admitted to the country every year.
Likewise, nearly 80 percent of Americans said they supported Trump’s plan to change the country’s immigration system to one based on merit, skills, and English proficiency, rather than the current system where foreign nationals with family members living in the U.S. are given priority.