Although Donald Trump is turning overt racism up to 11 in this campaign, it's imporant to remember that racism, particularly anti-blackness, has long been a centerpiece of the Republican platform.
To underline the point that this shit isn't new, these comments about black voters that Jeb Bush made at a campaign event in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, last night echo Mitt Romney's and Paul Ryan's "takers and moochers" language from the last election, which itself is just an extension of Saint Ronald Reagan's "welfare queens" rhetoric, which was a then-modern varation on the Southern Strategy:
"Look around this room," a man told Bush, who spoke to a mostly white crowd. "How many black faces do you see? How are you going to include them and get them to vote for you?" asked the man, who was white.Free stuff. Like healthcare and education and housing and food. Which can be difficult to secure care of social Darwinist policy conceived and enacted and enforced by Republicans (with plenty of assist from craven Democrats).
Bush pointed to his record on school choice and said that if Republicans could double their share of the black vote, they would win the swing states of Ohio and Virginia.
"Our message is one of hope and aspiration," he said at the East Cooper Republican Women's Club annual Shrimp Dinner. "It isn't one of division and get in line and we'll take care of you with free stuff. Our message is one that is uplifting -- that says you can achieve earned success."
It is the height of audacity for Jeb Bush, a man of undiluted privilege whose entire career is owed to his family connections, to indulge the dishonest rhetoric of the meritocracy; to lecture people about pulling themselves up by their bootstraps when his station is built upon a foundation of stolen boots.
But this is the Republican Party. This is its history, and this is its present. And Trump, Bush, and all the rest of this garbage lot are doing their damnedest to make sure that racism will be their party's future, too.