Opinion | Whither the Republican Party After Trump?

To the Editor:

Re “As Trump Falls, a Party Braces for Pitchforks” (front page, Jan. 17):

The G.O.P. owes the country a big mea culpa for the lies told in the party’s name, especially the claim of a massive voter fraud that stole the election from Donald Trump.

If the large majority of Republicans continue to believe, as recent polls show, that the election was rigged, the country’s bitter divide cannot be healed, nor can the party itself recover unity. The “big lie” will continue to fuel the beliefs and violence of the far-right mob responsible for the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

All responsible Republican leaders need to grab megaphones and declare that Donald Trump and his enablers lied, and that Joe Biden won fair and square. They should correct other big lies, too, including antifa orchestration of the Capitol attack.

Sure, it would further embarrass the party, but that is probably preferable to ending up a laughingstock in the political graveyard — in the family plot of the Know Nothings and other parties that descended into deception and racism.

Charles Burress
El Cerrito, Calif.

To the Editor:

In 1952 I joined the Republican Party and joyfully voted for Dwight D. Eisenhower for president. I lived in Texas, where the Democrats then embraced the cruel tradition of Jim Crow. Republicans offered a hope for a gentler integration of our Black neighbors.

I remained a loyal Republican during the awkward days of Senator Joseph McCarthy’s attacks, but became tested when Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush reduced taxes on the rich. Then along came Donald Trump with his self-serving lies, which encouraged the horrendous assaults on our Capitol on Jan. 6.

Whether or not he realizes it, Mr. Trump has dealt the Republican Party a near terminal blow. Who knows how many years will pass before the Grand Old Party will recover? I firmly believe that our nation has thrived while governed by a two-party political system. But until the Republican Party rejects Mr. Trump’s repugnant policies, don’t look to me for support.

Conrad Gordon Deats
Tampa, Fla.

To the Editor:

I voted for Donald Trump in 2016 and 2020. Seeing the recent chaos, should I regret that? What other options exist?

Democrats claim to be the party of tolerance and unity. But they won’t tolerate my beliefs. They undermine family values and demand universal access to the murder of unborn babies. I can’t vote for them anymore.

Republicans, on the other hand, do little more than talk the talk while failing to walk forward. In fact, with both the legislative and executive branches secured by Republicans for the first two years of Mr. Trump’s term, what good did they do?

Sure, I’m disappointed by Mr. Trump’s words, but I’m far more disappointed in the rest of our government. I don’t regret my votes.

Kevin Custos
Brookfield, Ill.

To the Editor:

Re “Trump Lost Arizona, but Not His Firm Grip on the State’s G.O.P.” (front page, Jan. 20):

As a former resident of Arizona, I am appalled that the leadership of that state’s Republican Party is planning to censure Cindy McCain and Jeff Flake for not supporting Donald Trump in the 2020 election. I am not surprised that thousands of Arizona Republicans have changed their voting registration to independent.

Kelli Ward, state party chair, ought to be replaced by someone who believes in healing a fractured party. The Arizona Republican “family” is not just fractured; rather, it is dysfunctional and delusional as long as it continues to spew mythical conspiracy theories of fraud and a stolen election. God help Arizona!

Reuven Taff

To the Editor:

Re “Senate Leader Says President ‘Provoked’ Mob” (front page, Jan. 20):

This moment presents an opportunity for Republican leadership to redefine the party as one of integrity, decency and lawfulness. The alternative, a party that resembles organized crime, will destroy our democracy and lead to more chaos, fear and bloodshed.

A Senate conviction of Donald Trump is in the best interest of the Republican Party, the United States and the world. I am grateful to the 10 Republican members of Congress who bravely voted for truth against threats of retaliation and death, not only against themselves but their families as well.

There is potentially much for individual senators to lose by voting to convict the president of “inciting violence against the government of the United States.” There is much more for them, their families, our country and the world to lose if they vote to uphold Mr. Trump’s unconstitutional actions. I urge all senators, all of whose lives were threatened because of the president’s actions on Jan. 6, to be brave and uphold their commitment to protect, defend and serve.

Nancy Bermon
Nyack, N.Y.

To the Editor:

Re “The Few Courageous Senators,” by Peter Beinart (Op-Ed, Jan. 16):

I got a real kick out of this piece on courageous senators. My feeling is that Mr. Beinart defines “courageous” as agreeing to the liberal narrative as opposed to defying one’s party. Let’s see how courageous he thinks Joe Manchin is in a couple of months when he votes to keep the filibuster.

Paul Morais
Sioux Falls, S.D.

To the Editor:

Dear Trump voters:

OK, you got to pay lower taxes, you got a conservative Supreme Court, you got rid of many regulations, you got the U.S. Embassy moved to Jerusalem and you could probably list many other “gots.” But just stop for one minute and think about what happened in our sacred Capitol because of one man refusing to gracefully accept defeat.

Are you still proud of your vote, and are you still a “Trumpster”? Or have you had a change of heart? For the sake of our country and democracy and the lives of those in power, I sincerely hope the answer to the last question is “yes!”

Barry Markowitz
West Stockbridge, Mass.

To the Editor:

I am now a “repentant Republican,” meaning that I’m disappointed in Donald Trump’s false promises and false “facts” that have taken advantage of a lot of hard-working Americans, including my family, many of whom still believe his conspiracy theories. I’m also disillusioned by the many Republican officeholders who declined to stand up to him when they knew he was wrong.

But it’s probably time that we all acknowledge that we elected a narcissistic con man, and that we count our losses and look forward to a time of sanity and healing. After all, as the proverb goes, “The bitter heart eats its owner.”

Michael Barrett
Ashburn, Va.

To the Editor:

Re “The Donor Class Pressures Republicans Still Backing Trump” (news article, Jan. 14):

I’m heartened that the congressional Republicans who voted to overturn the election — a.k.a. the Sedition Caucus — are losing major corporate donors to their political campaigns. I hope those same donors and all others will stop buying advertising time on Fox News and other right-wing and extremist media.

These media companies continue to spread lies about our election, democracy and country. By their actions, they implicitly encourage the insurrectionists to try again, and again and again. These complicit media companies need to be starved of the profits they depend on.

Laurie Caplan
Astoria, Ore.

To the Editor:

Dear Senator Rand Paul:

So you think the Republican Party will lose one-third of its members if they separate from Donald Trump. Well, Mr. Rand, it’s sort of like a gangrenous leg. No one likes the thought of losing a limb, but when it’s poisoning the rest of the body, it has to go.

Your Fellow American,

C.A. Papapietro
Port Jefferson, N.Y.

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