What is our attitude toward the Republicans from the Trump Era, who now have their regrets and want to come home to rationality?
For some on the Left this is an easy call: there is no redemption for any of them.
Forget it, they insist, you are all too hopelessly compromised — don’t bother trying to seek any absolution. In some cases this applies even to Never Trump conservatives who were, after all, actually conservative, which makes them irredeemable unless they are willing to abjure their entire past and reject every principle that they once held. I get a regular dose of this: You built this. Trump merely said what you have been thinking all along.
This is, of course, easy virtue signaling, but it is unhealthy and intellectually sloppy to gloss over the fundamental differences between the conservatism of a Milton Friedman and the raw nationalist nativism of a Steve Bannon, just as it is intellectually dishonest to confuse the progressivism of Adlai Stevenson with Che Guevera. Nuance matters.
It is also dumb politics, because it rejects the idea that politics is about attraction and addition.