Republicans want you to call their policies ‘racist.’ It’s part of their plan.

There are two ways to look at recent controversies over subjects such as voting rights, crime and what we often put under the broad umbrella of the “culture war.” In one, Republicans continually reveal their intentions by making it hard for racial minorities to vote, stirring up racialized crime fears and vilifying Black celebrities, all to use racism as an instrument of base mobilization.

In another, Democrats toss around toxic and unfounded accusations of racism against well-meaning Republicans who want only to achieve secure elections and keep their families safe.

But there’s another dimension to this conflict. Republicans, I would argue, want Democrats to accuse them of racism.

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