For this week’s episode of Primary Concerns, I sat down with former GOP operative and presidential candidate Evan McMullin—one of few high-profile Republicans who hasn’t decided that the spoils of a Trump presidency (tax cuts, repealing Obamacare) are more important than democracy.
As the Trump era ramps up, bear in mind that many Republican elected officials who are ignoring his authoritarian tendencies would abandon him immediately if he proposed tax increases. Then compare that to what McMullin told me.
We can have these policy disagreements: that’s a luxury to have those policy disagreements! ...
There will continue to be conservative versus liberal versus progressive policy differences, right? And those are healthy and that’s good and let’s continue to have those debates. But that’s been the defining characteristic of our political paradigm in the United States for the last few decades at least. If Donald Trump governs the way he says he’s going to govern, if he governs as an authoritarian, if he aligns with Vladimir Putin as president, then we may find ourselves entering into a new political paradigm that’s akin to what we see in some places in Europe and in Latin America where it’s pro-authoritarian versus anti-authoritarian. And in that case it’s sort of a realignment where you’re going to find people on the right and the left traditionally in the anti-authoritarian camp, knowing that they have differences on these other traditional policy issues that are important, but also seeing that there is organic common ground, and nobody has to compromise anything.
Give the whole conversation a listen here: