In case it's not clear yet to Trump supporters, let the Pennsylvania special election be a further reminder in a series of reminders since these elections have begun -- there are no other Republicans who will run on, let alone put into effect, the major issues that scored the president an upset victory.
That means: economic nationalism and re-industrialization, a non-interventionist military, restricting immigration, and leaving the social safety net in place -- if anything, adding single-payer healthcare into the mix.
The Republicans are only going to run on the zombie-Reagan agenda that ruined our nation in less than a generation, and that voters are sick to death of -- especially the post-Boomer generations who did not get in on the ground floor of the looting of our country. These Reaganites include Bill Clinton types who simply presented a mild pushback against the overall agenda, while inflaming voters with anti-American multiculturalism in the social domain.
There is no such thing as "the Paul Ryan GOP" or "the RINOs in the GOP" or "the GOP Establishment" -- that is the entirety of the party. Trump is totally sui generis, and that's why they savaged him so brutally during the primaries of 2016, and why they continue to obstruct his anti-GOP agenda on tariffs, trade, war, and so on.
The GOP is not "going to learn" from the lessons where "Trump taught them how to win". They are an ossified party at the terminal stage of hegemony. How long can they be given to learn how to win? Trump destroyed their vision back in 2016. If they're still ignoring his winning platform, they will not be pursuing it anytime soon. "Give them another year, two years, three years" is not going to convince a normal person. More realistic is 15-20 years, when they will be the mild pushback party under a new Bernie-style paradigm that will last for several generations.
Indeed, the only party showing signs of learning from bruising losses is the Democrats. Bernie has 16 co-sponsors for a single-payer healthcare bill, most of whom endorsed Hillary and painted him as too pie-in-the-sky just a couple years ago. They flipped deep red seats (Alabama Senate, PA-18) by running white guys who talked about social obligations to the bottom 80% of the class pyramid, rather than SJWs. And the only elected officials who are openly in favor of Trump's tariffs and trade war have been Dems.
The Republican party's vision for the future has been utterly rejected by voters as too bleak, too anti-American, and too Social Darwinist. Voters want radical change, now, and they threw their weight behind Trump in order to thoroughly transform the party from within. Since dominant parties at this late desperate stage are too ossified to reform themselves, next time the voters will go for more of a firebrand from the opposition party (Bernie or someone like him).
The alienation of the voters from the GOP will only accelerate in the next years of the Trump administration, as the personnel continue to shift in a more neocon direction.
Some populists and nationalists were hopeful when the Bannonites were in the government -- they got mostly purged last year, with only a few trade hawks remaining (and they aren't promoted to the top, or allowed to see their policies become implemented without dilution).
Some moderates were hopeful when the Manhattan Democrats in the Javanka faction looked like they could influence policy. They are getting purged and demoted as we speak.
That removes any source of heterodox, unconventional, breath of fresh air politics coming from a GOP administration, which will only get more and more typically Republican as General Kelly consolidates his influence on behalf of typical Republican power groups like the Pentagon.
Nobody who took part in a "change election" wanted to see the outcome be George W. Bush: The Resurrection, but that is largely where things are going. Remember: even W got steel tariffs. And remember: the Iraq War didn't kick off until his third year.
As bad as people like Tillerson and Cohn have been, just wait until it's Pompeo and Kudlow. If you hated McMaster, wait till you get John Bolton. It's a final desperate attempt to shock the corpse of Reaganism back to life -- supply-side economics, Cold War interventionism and proxy wars, and austerity on social spending at home (unless you work for a defense contractor or Wall Street bank).
Most of this is beyond Trump's control, as he's only one guy with minimal political capital. Whenever Trump does some firing, the GOP does the hiring. But as time goes on and he goes along with their agenda rather than fight for his own agenda, against his own party, he too will lose some of his luster in the eyes of formerly hopeful voters. We wanted someone who would fight the Republican Establishment, not become their enabler and rubber-stamper.
But regardless of how much voters blame Trump personally, they will give up on the hopeless GOP.
All the action is taking place on the Democrats' side, and since the shake-up and re-alignment is just getting started, Trump supporters can get in at the outset and make a real difference. Unlike the hardened fossil of the GOP, which cannot be reshaped, the Democrats are more like a pile of wet clay that has not been shaped, let alone baked, just yet.
If one of your pet issues is not represented there, it's because you're wasting your time on Republican business fags. The only major Trumpian issue not being championed, yet, by the Dems is restricting immigration -- but then, neither is that being delivered by the Republicans, who control the entire government. Unlike the locked doors of the inward-looking GOP, the gates of the Democrat party have been left open and unattended -- so just invade their territory and dig yourself in as the immigration restriction camp of the Dems.
Like it or not, you're going to have to modulate your anti-immigration message if you want to reach a national audience. Make it less about the threat of violent crime, which is a typical losing Republican theme. Would it matter if we're demographically replaced by hordes of docile Chinese drones rather than gang members from El Salvador? Make it more about cheap labor, and sheer numbers -- the country is full, with too many Americans already struggling to make ends meet. Much more in line with Democrat themes than failed Republican themes about violence, crime, and death.