The GOP end game

February 2nd, 2016
Dionne%252C%2BEJ%2BPHOTO%2BFeb%2B2016.jpThis year's GOP primary race, perhaps more than others, does not exist in a vacuum. When Barry Goldwater accepted the GOP nomination in the SF Cow Palace in 1964, he spoke of extremism in the defense liberty and eschewed moderation.  Ever since that moment, so called conservatives have been falling all over themselves trying to live up to those words.  Words that had very little to do with the true conservatism of Edmund Burke or Michael Oakeshott and words that were later called into question by Goldwater himself.

But the attempt to elevate their mythology, as Ted Cruz is trying to do,  particularly in a rapidly evolving world, may be the final nail in the Republican coffin

This is the context of E.J. Dionne’s insightful new book Why the Right Went Wrong: Conservatism From Goldwater to the Tea Party and Beyond.

My conversation with E.J. Dionne: