Editor-at-large of The Weekly Standard Bill Kristol bashed the Republican party for being overly paranoid and blamed Fox News for bringing a fringe element into the GOP, Thursday on “Morning Joe.”
“I hold Roger [Ailes] a little responsible for this,” Kristol said. “Fringy web sites have become mainstream Fox News — what fringy web sites once said is now said by Fox News hosts. What losing primary candidates who got 8 percent of the vote in some Republican primary somewhere once would have said, is now being said by mainstream Republican senators so that is what is upsetting.”
He accused conservative commentators of embracing “Bannonism” and said the hostile fervor has spread to GOP politicians.
“I mean, it’s funny but it’s sad,” Kristol said. “Bannon is gone. The alt-right is sort of discredited, but Bannonism is winning. When you look at the hill Republicans, the conservative commentators many of them, they are in the possession of serious conspiracy theorizing. Kind of paranoia. Hostility to basic American government institutions, in a way that I would have honestly said a year or 18 months ago would be impossible.”
Kristol also compared GOP Sen. Ron Johnson to the late Joseph McCarthy and said Johnson used to be “normal.”
“We look at Joe McCarthy but there are many other people. McCarthyism was bigger than McCarthy and similarly the degree to which this kind of paranoia and conspiracy theorizing, demonizing of people has now just become routine for an awful lot of Republicans,” Kristol concluded. “Ron Johnson was a normal Republican senator.”
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