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July 23, 2013 9:05 AM “A Party of Closed Minds and Borders”

By Mark Kleiman

That’s the Wall Street Journal on the GOP. After all, the plutocrats love them some guestworkers, and when the principle of bigotry runs into the principle of greed, well then the plutocrats think bigotry ought to give way. There’s just one problem: the party’s lunatic fringe is now also its central voting base.

Tom Edsall reports on the discomfort the lunatic fringe/base and the racketeers who profit from its gulliblity have started to cause among Republicans with clean fingernails who want to win Presidential elections.

I don’t see any way for the plutocrats to win this one. Gerrymandering and voter suppression will guarantee safe seats for red-meat “conservatives” in Red districts, and ensure that the main threat to the political longevity of a Republican officeholder is a teahadi primary challenge. Yes, losing the moneyman vote can cut into, or even reverse, the traditional Republican advantage in campaign finance, as Ken Cuccinelli is discovering. But that means much more in statewide and national races than it does for individual Congressmen and state reps.

That’s bad news for the country in the medium term; we really need two parties capable of running the government. But since the GOP is what it is, there’s at least some benefit in saying so and accelerating the inevitable collapse and reconstruction.

[Cross-posted at The Reality-based Community]

Mark Kleiman is a professor of public policy at the University of California Los Angeles.