First Steps In Rebuilding The GOP

The future success of the GOP depends on constructive reform of the party. The Republican party must be more inclusive of demographics that are too often overlooked. The party needs to grow its diversity in age, its diversity in race, and most importantly its diversity of thought.

Constructive rectification of the party is vital in picking up the pieces after multiple failed 2020 campaigns.

The two Senate elections in Georgia prove the GOP’s diminishing influence in our federal government. The Democratic Party now controls both bodies of Congress in addition to the Presidency.

Like him or not, Trump was the worst thing that happened to the Republican Party. The party has never been more divided; and that division has and will continue to prevent the GOP from election victories.

Everybody always talked about the ‘Trump Train,’ but nobody ever said the train’s destination was the extinction of the GOP.

The future success of the GOP requires withdrawal from Trumpism, the blind following of Trump’s blatantly authoritarian actions. Doing so is essential in earning votes from young voters that are repelled by the President’s style.

There are three big factors in rebranding the Republican party post-Trump: engage younger voters, incorporate greater racial demographics, and embrace the diversity of ideas.

The age demographic of the GOP grows top-heavy in age whereas Democrats continue to increase their advantage among Millennial voters. The GOP desperately needs to attract younger voters as college graduates continue to shift to the Democratic party.

Republicans need to strengthen their grassroots efforts and social media presence to attract younger voters to compete.

One good thing that came out of the 2020 Presidential election was that the GOP made great strides on the front of racial demographics.

The Republican party had unprecedented support from Hispanic voters in the 2020 election, showing progress on the front of racial diversity. Trump won the highest share of non-white support of any Republican in 60 years.

Trump won Zapata County, Texas by 52-to-47 percent over Biden, a county with a population that is 94.7% Hispanic and elected Clinton over Trump in 2016 by 65-32 percent.

Joseph Rodriguez, a sophomore majoring in Business at ASU, was a former lifelong Democrat. He is now an active ASU College Republican.

Rodriguez was turned off by the “leftist ideology of wokeism,” and said he joined the GOP because he “liked what [it] stood for: taking responsibility for your actions. Nobody is going to be there to just hand things to you, you’ve got to work for it.”

Democrat voters have become more racially diverse since the 1990s. There has been less change among Republican voters, so the party must continue to do more.

Rodriguez referred to himself as “the Hispanic kid in the barrio who all he saw growing up was drug dealers in the streets.” He argued that the Republicans need to “go into these communities and speak to the kids and tell them ‘you can make it out of here’.”

Rodriguez said, “We need to rebrand.” The GOP must be open to new ideas popular among young voters.

The three issues Rodriguez and I discussed were: immigration, drug policy, and criminal justice reform; all liberty-oriented issues.

Some Republican lawmakers such as Senator Cotton are still notoriously anti-immigrant, and this is something that is in dire need of change.

I have an international student friend who pays taxes and has labored in the Arizona workforce for several years. Nonetheless, he was still at high-risk for deportation when earlier this year I.C.E. proposed an international student ban as were 16.2% of the ASU student body.

We shouldn’t have to worry about our friends being at risk of deportation. We should be fast-tracking the citizenship process for immigrants who’ve proven they contribute to our economy.

Drug decriminalization is another issue more appealing to younger voters. 63% of Millennial Republicans are in favor of marijuana legalization. It’s time we end the failed War on Drugs.

I argued college-aged Arizona voters would be the force that swayed the vote in legalizing recreational marijuana (Proposition 207), and that’s just what they did. Rodriguez was among these voters in favor of Proposition 207.

Rodriguez stated, “The war on drugs is not working. We’ve been doing it for thirty years and all we’re doing is throwing people in prison.”

Criminal justice reform goes hand-in-hand with drug decriminalization, and Republican state legislators have been placing strong emphasis on criminal justice reform. There is still much work to do in undoing a long history of bipartisan mass incarceration for victimless drug offenses.

Prison shouldn’t just be about punishment. It needs to place equal emphasis on rehabilitation.

In order to attract more young voters, the party needs to be open to these new liberty-oriented values.

The Republican party has burdened with a great weight these past four years. Now that the party is free it is time to make the Republican party great again.



About Ryne Bolick 3 Articles
Ryne Bolick Mechanical Engineering - Barrett, the Honors College | ASU '24 Opinion Columnist, State Press Fmr Vice President, Governor's Youth Commission Owner & Founder, FireBird Installations