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Current location: Somewhere in the NYC metropolitan statistical area
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 36,113

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They've been on that trajectory since the 90s...

...when Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh effectively became the voices of the party. In 2000 it wasn't deeply-rooted enough, and the party establishment still pretty much followed "traditional" practices.

In 2004 they had someone already squatting in the Oval Office, so there was a clear choice.

The cracks were really visible in 2008, but McCain and Romney were heavy enough establishment hitters to still clean up by far.

And then McCain, heeding Bill Kristol's flawless logic, tapped the Grifter Queen of Glacier Gulch as his VP. And then the "Kenyan" guy with the furrin name won.

The floodgates opened up: rich wingnuts and bilkers poured money into the coffers of the Teastroturf machine, run-of-the-mill wingnuts poured their own money in, and it was a great time to cash in and/or (mostly "and" bilk the gullible who were so flame-eyed that they weren't paying much attention to where the money was going.

Simplified, sure, but that's the gist of it.
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