Republican. But what is wrong in America that some one like Trump can be a threat to taking the Presidency. Last year I wrote a piece that predicted Ted Cruz losing the GOP bid for the Presidency. As a total whack-job, theocrat, I knew Ted didn't stand a chance in a general election, and I sincerely thought he was encouraged to run to make ol' Jeb look more electable. But then the Donald happened. No one could have predicted Donald Trump.
I will not go into Trump's politics, nor his lack of public speaking skills (George Takei already pointed this out in the most perfect way). The reason I will refrain from this is because Trump's politics have nothing to do with his success. Yes. I just wrote that the politics of the GOP Presidential candidate's success is irrelevant. What has America come to? Well, it's a long story, one that began with the spouse of one other potential Presidential Candidate.
The Clinton Presidency was a soap opera. It was as entertaining since the first time Bill played his sax. Yes, there was scandal, but it was of a personal matter. It's not like he was selling illegal arms and getting away with it. However, the Clinton Presidency was the first neo-liberal Presidency whose economic guru was Alan Greenspan, who suckled at the tit of Ayn Rand and was a member of her cult, "the Collective." Thus began the purchase of America by corporate interests. Furthermore, his policies opened the door for successor to rape the Middle Class in America, leading to the Great Recession.
When li'l Bush stole the Presidency in 2000 he began continuing Reagan-esque trickle down policies. He gave tax breaks for the rich, privatized (AKA segregated) schools along racial and class lines, and lied to the American people to start an illegal war. And that's not to mention the unethical, and un-American detention camp in Guantanamo Bay. The Bush Administration continued the purchase of the American government by the corporate elite as the GOP rose to even greater power. With the marriage of the religious right to the political right now old hat, the Bush presidency led the country into a scientific back-slide. At the national level, climate change was denied, stem cell research suppressed, and creationism, now renamed "intelligent design," was allowed to be taught in schools along side evolution. These things became business as usual. Fortunately, Presidents have term limits, unfortunately, the next one was another neo-lib.
In 2008, Obama upset the DNC by sweeping Hillary Clinton out of the race, thus ending her first bid for the Presidency. He promised hope and change, and while the country hoped, his changes weren't spectacular, when they did occur. His first major change was to implement mandatory health care that was similar to what Hillary Clinton advocated during her husband's Presidency. The ACA, or Obamacare, passed, but not before the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbies gutted the bill to the point that it was a mockery of its former self. In fact, States that did not expand Medicaid like they were supposed to have seen rate hikes and poor coverage for the very people the ACA was designed to protect. Added to this debacle, Obama expanded US military interests in the middle east which further destabilized the region. Also under Obama's watch, a corporation's religious belief trumps family planning, and corporations are now people who are allowed to vote with their wallets. Neo-liberalism looks less like liberalism, and more like old-fashioned conservatism.
The funny (or sad, per your perspective) part, is that the Party of Lincoln was hijacked twice in our little story. The first time was when the Moral Majority took controlling influence back in the 80s. This married Gilded-Age economics with religion. From a political point of view, this is brilliant because socioeconomic status is often an indicator (and much more so in the 80s than today) of a person's education. Poorer people tend to be more religious. Less educated people are less likely to question authorities they respect. Like preachers, church elders, priests, what have you. How else do you get an entire demographic to consistently vote against their own interests?
The second time the GOP was hijacked came not from the 1%, but from the product of their political tampering. A grassroots movement sprang up in Red State areas calling for a return to more Constitutional times. The Tea Party: poor conservatives convinced that it was the liberals that were destroying the country. You remember them, they were the ones chanting "Keep the Government out of my Medicare!" The Tea Party exists not to keep the GOP conservative, but to oppose Obama specifically. Once the Republicans took control of the House and Senate they have stonewalled any left-leaning legislation introduced. This includes shutting down the Federal Government for not getting the 1% friendly tax breaks into the budget. Their obstructionism is so rampant, that the GOP controlled Senate is refusing to hold hearings on a Supreme Court vacancy. They want to fill the seat, they just don't want Obama to do it. Before the 2016 election, this had become the state of US politics, the party in the Majority, refusing to work at the job they were hired for out of simple hatred for the other aisle, and the brown man in the White House. The only person Tea Partyers hate more than Obama is Hillary Clinton.
Both Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump are outsiders to the status quo. Clinton has many of the same
I think a little ditty from the 80s can sum up the attitudes of the oft ignored independent voters this election cycle: