Last week, in the passage of the two-year budget featuring several hundred billion in new spending, the Tea Party years came to an end. The unifying glue of the GOP in the early years of the second decade of the 21st century came apart.
In its place is the Covfefe Party. You remember covfefe. It was the marvelously inscrutable assemblage of letters President Trump issued forth late one night last spring in a tweet so indecipherable (“despite the negative press covfefe”) it might have come straight out of James Joyce’s “Finnegans Wake.”
It is impossible to make a case that there is a Republican Party agenda now in the classic sense of the word. Instead, there is whatever works at any given point of time.
To take one interesting example: House Speaker Paul Ryan’s consuming obsession as a public servant these past decades has been the pressing need for entitlement reform — a reform it’s now unlikely we’ll ever see until we hit the moment of existential budgetary crisis in about 15 years.