First, they came for the RINOs [Republicans-in-name-only] and no one spoke up, for they were not RINOs. Then they came for the cuckservatives, and no one spoke up because they were not cuckservatives. And now, John Boehner says “There is no Republican party.”
Extinction of a species or even a subspecies is not an unknown or pleasant phenomenon. Sometimes, the path to demise is not apparent and occurs in a political biota experiencing dynamics of rapid change. For several years, this writer was on the email subscription list for the National Republican Congressional Committee, whose messages generally opened with either “Fellow Conservative” or “Dear Conservative.” Not being either a conservative or a Republican, the subtlety of the salutation failed to register. Over time, political extinctions have occurred, rendering obsolete Whigs, Tories, Bull Mooses, Me Too Republicans [for those old enough to remember] and, yes, even Tea Partiers.
In Virginia, the local print media have carried a number of articles drawing commentary from readers that the state’s GOP members and elected leaders are under threat, especially from the Democratic gain of seats in the House of Delegates in the 2017 election and the vote from a number of Republicans in support of Medicaid expansion in the Commonwealth. This has led the non-RINOs and non-cuckservatives to nominate very extreme, radical-right candidates to recapture the elephant ideology and invigorate the DNA necessary for species survival. Proto and crypto right wing leaders tend to emerge when the food chain of votes diminishes and there are fewer folks in the audience. Some talking heads on cable news believe this evolutionary narrowing is apparent in recent presidential rallies.
Archeological digs in Virginia have not uncovered the elusive elephant graveyard, but the remains of a whale were unearthed in 2012 in Yorktown, and evidence of cannibalism had been identified in 2013 in Jamestown, possibly the result of “The Starving Time.” Both discoveries may portend a dire future for RINOs, cuckservatives, and other political species on the limb of Republican evolution. Only time will tell.