There's no happy ending for the GOP

Some on the right who oppose Trump do so because he is constantly in the business of alienating people, recklessly throwing around extreme rhetoric and taking positions far outside the political mainstream on a host of issues. If you consider the Republican Party’s “Growth and Opportunity Project” report of 2013 (colloquially known as “The Autopsy”), Trump’s candidacy is the polar opposite of nearly everything that report proposes, from the strategic (appealing to Hispanics, etc.) to the tactical (using data and digital effectively).

These “Autopsy #NeverTrump” types will no doubt point fingers at the very conservative or Tea Party wing of the party for having fostered an environment of intransigence and vitriol that paved the way for Trumpism to thrive.

But there is another faction of #NeverTrump that in fact is that very conservative Tea Party wing of the party. They oppose Trump because he is plainly not a conservative and has admitted as much. Throughout the campaign, Trump has been a blatant apostate on issues ranging from 9/11 to Planned Parenthood to the size and scope of government, and seems not to care much for liberty or limits on executive power.

The “Tea Party #NeverTrump” faction will certainly point to those who embraced the “autopsy” and claim that support for a more moderate tone or policies like comprehensive immigration reform left voters angry over broken promises. This created a primary electorate ready to blow up a party that stood for nothing, creating the conditions for Trump.