It was mostly Democrats who watched last week's convention, and they liked what they saw. Now, as the Republicans begin theirs, we find a Republican Party whose voters not only hold a different view of things in America than Democrats do — but also one very different from most voters overall. And therein may lie Republicans' own challenge.
Republicans see an America — to borrow Ronald Reagan's famous test — better off today than it was four years ago, mainly, they say, because of their confidence in President Trump.
For most Republicans, America is a nation where the economy is still fairly good, where the effort to handle the coronavirus is going at least somewhat well and the president is doing a very good job on it. For them, the virus elicits less concern in the first place. They believe the 170,000 fatalities is an overstated count and one which, for many, can so far be considered acceptable. And it is a nation where, for an overwhelming number of Republicans, there has been too much focus on racial discrimination of late.
And so as their convention begins, one test for the GOP appears whether they can persuade more Americans to join them in these assessments.
These are cultists in a death cult. Majorities of Republicans think that America is better off now, with a raging pandemic killing tens of thousands verging on hundreds of thousands (and they refuse to believe that is even happening) with a cratering economy where unemployment is in double digits, where America is a laughingstock and Americans are banned from traveling to most countries, where the most common reason as to why things are better than 2016 is because of Donald Trump.
And the reason they believe things are better now is because Obama isn't in charge. They even believe their finances are better now than in 2016.
Your Republican neighbors are cultists. There's no hope for them until they are deprogrammed and that will take years, if ever. We'll have to move forward through them, not with them.