I told them that this was, "The Republicans' Last Hurrah." I am not sure exactly why, but my intuitive sense told me that this was the last two years they would have to make trouble. I say 'make trouble' because of their own commitment to stop anything President Barack Obama proposed, regardless of the merits of the legislation.
Now, it looks as if I was correct in my prediction. The rise of Donald Trump as a candidate for President of the United States is strong evidence of a fracturing of the Republican party. There are probably more than two factions, but there are at least two at the moment. The language on both sides is intense, each against the other (in favor of Trump, or opposed to him).
My prediction now is that the Republican candidate for president, no matter who it turns out to be, will lose this fall, in the general election in November.
So, what of the Democrats? My message to Democrats is, your turn will be next. The public statements between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton are much more polite, of course. But the blood of the people is boiling beneath the surface, now that the Occupy Movement has done its job. That job was to give us the terms "the 99 percent" and "the one percent" for use in daily conversation. Of course, the Occupy movement did a whole lot more than that, but that's a story for another time.
Although both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders seem to represent strong central government, moving toward more socialist programs, more of less, my prediction is that the days of the US government managing giant social programs is largely over.
If you look at the tenor of the Trump supporters, for example, they are not going to stand to have huge government programs 'shoved down their throats.' Whether these programs could benefit them or not, they are the 'horsepower' behind the fight in Congress against Barack Obama and his agenda. They are 'fed up' with Congress, not because it blocked the President's agenda, but because their own agenda is also going nowhere and even falling behind.
One example is the advent of same sex marriage, from one state in 2004 to national policy in 2015, just 11 years. Put yourself in the shoes of the person who thinks this is 'going in the wrong direction,' for just a moment. They have a lot of fear that 'traditional moral values' are losing ground rapidly. If anything their cries for 'smaller government' seems contradictory to their wish that federal policy would reach down to the individual and control who can marry whom, who can have an abortion, who can patake cannibis (smoke weed), etc. Sorry, but you can't have it both ways.
As we now see, the power of the Federal Government to limit personal choices such as these is more and more limited, whether it's access to abortion (the left wants it, the right doesn't) or easy access to guns (the left doesn't, but the right does).
So, if the Federal Government is becoming less and less effective in dictating what everyone in the entire country can do, what happens next? The answer is that the USA is breaking apart, in a sense. No, no, there won't be a revolution tomorrow. The US flag will continue to fly over the White House for many years, and we're not likely to need a passport to travel from New York to Pennsylvania. But power clearly is shifting down to a more local level. The less that can be done in Congress in Washington, D.C., the more that will have to be done elsewhere. That means the state level, in cities and towns, neighborhoods, etc. And overall, progressive causes will continue to gain over regressive causes.