Victor Davis Hanson, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, described the Never Trump commentariat as “careerists” angered by their lack of influence over Republican voters.
Hanson joined Tuesday’s edition of SiriusXM’s Breitbart News Tonight with hosts Rebecca Mansour and Joel Pollak to discuss his latest book, The Case for Trump.
Hanson noted the chasm between Never Trump pundits — who are marketed by news media outlets as de facto representatives of American conservatism — and the base of Republican voters:
[Never Trump] anger this time is different than their anger in 2016. Their anger in 2016 was a deluded confidence. They really believed that they would affect the usual 90 percent of Republicans who vote for [their] nominee, and [Donald Trump] got 89 percent of Republican registered voters. So they really believed that they were going to run Evan McMullin. They really believed if George Will said something we’d listen. And when Bill Kristol said something, we’d listen. Or when Max Boot weighed in on some foreign policy, we’d listen. Or if Eliot Cohen made a point, [we’d listen]. And we didn’t.
That was a shock to [Never Trump]. And then when Trump didn’t fail — as the the left said he would — or he was not liberal as president, as they said he would be, now what are they doing? Now their numbers have shrunk, and they know that 90 percent of their old constituents doesn’t agree with him — [Donald Trump] is going to get 90 percent of the Republican vote [in 2020] — so now it’s more of an ad hominem; bitter, shrill, anger — almost — for this choice that they’ve made, because where does it lead?
I don’t think the question is what happens to the critics of the supporters of Trump, the vast majority of Republicans. What happens to them? Because their plane, as I pointed out in that article, a classical role of the useful idiot. They go on MSNBC. They go on CNN. They’re invited to have columns in the Washington Post. But as soon as this thing is over with, the left has far more favored spokespeople than these people, and they best on the wrong horse twice.
Hanson noted the monetary motives of ostensibly conservative pundits pursuing careers at left-wing and Democrat-aligned news media outlets:
More importantly, they’re careerists. They project that all the time. When Charlie Sykes said that this is the Meet the Press Washington dinner party crowd, and he’s going to make it really uncomfortable for them — a lot of us have never been on Meet the Press. We’ve never been at a Washington dinner party, so they’re projecting their angst that they’re no longer consulting going into the White House … they take it very personally in a career sense.
I think when this is all over, I don’t think Mr. Omidyar — who’s funding the new Bulwark or any of these other foundations that are pretty much left-wing — I don’t think they’re going to continue to give money to these guys, because their usefulness will be over with. They’ll just get real old-style leftists, not people who are counterfeit leftists for careerist purposes.
Then what happens? Does Bill Kristol come back and say, ‘You know I told you guys that Trump would ruin the party, and then like some phoenix, it would have to emerge from the ashes under my stewardship’? Well, that didn’t happen.
According to the Atlantic, the Bulwark — a recently launched Never Trump outfit headed by Bill Kristol and Charlie Sykes — seeks to “make D.C. dinner parties and greenroom visits uncomfortable for the Trumpist elite.”
The Never Trump commentariat, wrote Hanson, hold “rural and working class Americans” in greater contempt than the left.
“Whereas elite leftists harbor a snobbish disdain for the working classes, they have not, to my knowledge, like an array of bitter Never Trumpers, dreamed of swapping out their fellow “deplorable” Americans for immigrants, both legal and illegal, arriving en masse,” wrote Hanson. “I suppose such a population exchange would be their ideal revenge on millions of clingers for ignoring a year of Never Trump screeds that had zero effect on Republican voters in 2016.
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