From APP president Frank Cannon’s op-ed in The Hill:
Thursday’s appearance by Judge Brett Kavanaugh before the Senate Judiciary Committee was a watershed moment for contemporary American politics. But while many stories will, understandably, focus on the continuing escalation of political polarization and tribalism which the nationally televised hearing made painfully visible, there is another, perhaps even more important takeaway to consider.
For Republicans, Sept. 27, 2018, should be remembered as the day when their party became, clearly and unapologetically, the Party of Donald Trump.
Until then, the battle for control of the GOP — which began during the presidential primaries of 2016 — was ongoing. Although President Trump has been the unquestioned public face of the party since entering the White House, numerous not-so-quiet rumors have circulated of potential challenges to his leadership. Republican politicians such as Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona and Bob Corker of Tennessee, and others have been openly critical of the president, leaving the door open for a possible establishment run against Trump in 2020. While GOP elites seemed temporarily resigned to Trump, it has clearly remained a delicate truce.
At least, that was the case, until Brett Kavanaugh. For establishment Republicans accustomed to enjoying their privileged positions in elite society, Kavanaugh was a wake-up call — a “red pill,” if you will. Judge Kavanaugh could not have been a more establishment pick. He had impeccable credentials, graduated from prestigious Yale Law School and worked in the George W. Bush White House before being confirmed to the powerful D.C. Court of Appeals. He was a Supreme Court candidate who undoubtedly would have been just as high on Mitt Romney’s or Jeb Bush’s shortlist as Donald Trump’s. In short, he was a candidate Republicans expected would be completely uncontroversial.
Read the full op-ed here.