Discover more from Ettingermentum Newsletter
The Continuing Electoral History of Transphobia
The latest failures by transphobes at the ballot box and what they mean.
Since I started this newsletter last year, on December 5th, 2022, I’ve published a total of 30 articles. Together, we’ve gone over everything from the 1968 Civil Rights Act to the drone war to the Presidential benches of liberal Democrats, progressive Democrats, and fascist Republicans. And for all of these, my intention is to provide an in-depth analysis of a certain political question for those interested in the issue. If you want to know why I think that Stacey Abrams is a bad politician or why President Biden shouldn’t run for re-election, I’ll explain to you why I think that. Hopefully, it leaves you more informed than how you started off.
But my largest piece, The Modern Electoral History of Transphobia, is somewhat different. In that article, I wasn’t presenting an opinion. I was proving a fact: that trans people and trans rights are not liabilities to any left-wing movement in any sense of the term, and that anybody who has ever spoken of them as such is either a disingenuous transphobe or too stupid and lazy to ever be taken seriously. I did my best to establish this fact beyond any reasonable doubt, with the ultimate hope of establishing it as a baseline of understanding for the issue as a whole. And in achieving this, things…have actually gone pretty well. Since its publication, the article has been cited across a wide variety of outlets, from The American Prospect to The Nation to The New York Times. It was even included in a YouTube video essay entirely without my knowledge, which, at least to me, is a striking sign for just how far its reach went.
But this is only the first step. The false myths that have formed around political transphobia over the past number of years are too large to be taken down by a single article published at a single moment in time. To truly establish the point I am trying to make, it needs to be repeated again and again, until everyone hears it and no one can deny it. This was something I was aware of when I published the first piece, but I was uncertain as to how I could re-make my point without being, well, repetitive. I covered a lot of ground in that article, so it would have been difficult to go back and re-examine the history without it being a retread.
The solution to this quandary, as it turned out, was the fact that I was right. Since March, we have had a number of elections across the country. They’ve varied greatly in nature, ranging from state supreme court elections to mayoral races to ballot measures. They’ve all occurred in drastically different contexts across different electorates in different states. And (because Republicans are completely out of ideas) they’ve all involved political transphobia. Just as I did before, I will go over these races in detail, explain how transphobia was utilized in them, how it failed, and what it means. I intend to make this a recurring series that I will update every time we have a new set of elections where Republicans use transphobic rhetoric (i.e., every election for the foreseeable future). And I will continue to do this until everyone collectively recognizes a basic truth: that transphobes aren’t pushing transphobia because trans people are easy targets for political gain, but because it makes them feel better about their own failures, and because they are ideologically obsessed, out-of-touch psychos with apocalyptic delusions.
So, with that in mind, let’s pick up where we left off in March, starting in Wisconsin, U.S.A.
April 5th, 2023: Wisconsin Supreme Court
Americans don’t like to think about authoritarian rule as a contemporary problem. Has it been an issue in the past, in, say, the Jim Crow South? Perhaps, depending on which side of the aisle you’re on. Could it be an issue in the future if the party you support doesn’t win the next election? Certainly. But it’s always far off or far back, a hypothetical or history. It’s not a problem now, even for how bad things are. This is a comforting lie, but it’s a lie. Because for more than a decade, this form of rule has been reality in a huge swath of states across the country. And perhaps nowhere has it been more notorious and downright blatant as in the Badger State of Wisconsin.
This sort of regime has never been a part of Wisconsin’s political tradition. Unlike other newly gerrymandered states in, say, the South, Wisconsin had always had competitive, open elections, even in comparison to its other neighbors in the north. Turnout there had always been consistently high. Shifts in party control happened frequently. And the state’s legacy as a bastion of the early 20th century Progressive movement meant that voters had substantial direct influence over the governing process, from direct judicial elections to a vibrant recall system. For decades, the state was known as a model of civic engagement that produced some of this country’s greatest leaders, from the La Follette family to Senators Gaylord Nelson, William Proxmire, and Russ Feingold.
This exact reputation, and the complacency it engendered, might have been exactly what allowed Wisconsin to be completely commandeered by movement conservatives. During the 2010 elections, the state did as many states do during a midterm and voted the opposition party into power. It wasn’t some kind of massive sea change. Wisconsin had regularly switched between parties at the state level—to this day, no governor in the state has ever been succeeded by an elected member of their own party under the current electoral system. The newly elected Republican governor, Scott Walker, wasn’t elected on a sweeping mandate, only winning by roughly 6% of the vote with a relatively narrow state senate majority for his party. But even if voters hadn’t given Walker and his party a resounding endorsement, they (perhaps without knowing) elected him and his allies at just the right time for him to make his rule permanent. 2010 was a redistricting election, meaning that the results in that single year decided who would draw the maps to be used for the next decade of elections in states where politicians draw their own districts.
Wisconsin was one of those states. So when Republicans took power in Madison in early 2011, they passed maps that abolished small-d democratic rule in Wisconsin in all but name. The state’s new districts were legendarily brutal gerrymanders that made it practically impossible for Democrats to ever win majorities in the state for as long as they were in place. With this now newly-established regime keeping them entirely insulated from public opinion, Walker and his allies would institute a political program straight out of the wet dream of a Heritage Foundation intern. Collective bargaining for public employees was effectively abolished. Right-to-work was enshrined into law. The state budget was cut massively. Delegated federal funds for the Medicaid expansion were refused in a fit of ideological pique, leaving Wisconsin to this day as one of only eleven states in the entire country to not accept the free money.
It didn’t matter if these decisions were popular or not. The public had been removed from the process that decided how they were governed. If Democrats were ever going to achieve power in the state again, they were going to have to go down a long, grinding road to take back the few of the state’s institutions still elected by a statewide vote—specifically, the governorship and the state supreme court. In their first step on this journey, they swung for the fences, subjecting the newly elected Scott Walker to a recall election in mid-2012. This had the potential to stop the Governor’s project dead in its tracks…but it backfired. As a consequence of Walker’s political skill and a complete lack of help from the ongoing Obama campaign, the Governor would win by an expanded seven-point margin that he used as proof of a mandate for his policies. The other potential stopgap, the state supreme court, would also remain under Republican control as liberals repeatedly struck out (or failed to even contest) elections for the body.
After retaining power in the 2014 elections, conservative rule in Wisconsin would see its capstone in 2016, when Republicans won the Badger State at the presidential level for the first time since 1984. At the time, this looked like the dawn of a new, rightward era for the state. In retrospect, it was the high-water mark for the entire Walkerite movement. In 2018, Democrats would sweep every statewide office on the ballot, taking out Scott Walker and flipping a state supreme court seat from conservative to liberal. In 2019, they’d take their only loss during this period after they lost a liberal-held seat to a conservative by less than 6,000 votes, but they’d make up for it in 2020 by flipping a conservative-held supreme court seat of their own. Following this election, conservatives on the state supreme court only held a narrow 4-3 majority, with one of their seats up for election in 2023.
It wasn’t an ideal situation for Republicans, but they wouldn’t truly have their backs against the wall until after the 2022 elections, when they unexpectedly failed to flip the state governorship. They’d expected that race to be where they regained their trifecta and re-committed the state to eternal Walkerite rule, but they struck out, leaving the state supreme court as their last redoubt. With no other conservative-held seat on the ballot until the latter half of the decade, both sides knew that this would be an absolutely pivotal election. Liberals would quickly unify around a Milwaukee circuit court judge named Janet Protasiewicz, although Dane county’s Everett Mitchell would run a mostly symbolic candidacy to her left. Conservatives, on the other hand, were deeply divided between the appointed former justice Daniel Kelly and Waukesha circuit court judge Jennifer Dorow. Both were extremely far-right, although with some crucial differences. While Dorow is just the kind of far-rightist that thinks we should bring back sodomy laws, Kelly is the kind of far-rightist to be directly involved in Stop the Steal and compare Social Security to slavery.
Needless to say, Kelly beat out Dorow among conservative voters in the February primary election, gaining the right to face Protasiewicz in the general election. But this was really all Kelly had to be happy about. The two liberal candidates, with their votes combined, had outpolled the conservative bloc 54% to 46%. This put Kelly in a deep hole to start off with, even as he was still being dramatically outraised in funds and out-advertised across all forms of media. At one point, Protastiewicz was so flush with funds that her campaign bought an ad for Super Bowl LVII. While a legion of conservative PACs would eventually come in to help, the legal limits placed on their spending still left Kelly far behind Protastiewicz in getting his message out there.
As for the issues of the race, the former justice couldn’t catch a break either. While liberals were running strong, consistent messaging on abortion rights, redistricting, and Kelly’s association with Stop the Steal, conservatives were stuck with the same repetitious messaging on crime that had failed them all across the country in 2022. Wisconsin Republicans probably couldn’t believe that it had all come to this. After once holding such a depth of institutional control, they were now on track to lose control over the entire state. All seemed lost…until a white knight came to Kelly’s rescue.
You already know who it is. It couldn’t be anyone else.
It was the American Principles Project.
For those of you who haven’t read the original article, I’ll give you a brief primer for our old friends at the APP. A right-wing group based in Virginia originally founded to advocate for a return to the gold standard, the APP has made a name for themselves over the past number of years for pushing transphobia on behalf of Republicans. They have been legitimate pioneers in this field, doing yeoman's work to normalize deranged anti-trans rhetoric across all of conservative politics. I honestly don’t even seek these guys out when doing research for these articles—they’re actually just everywhere. And across the years of time and tens of millions of dollars they’ve committed to this scheme, I don’t think they’ve ever actually helped a single candidate they’ve put in an effort for. These guys are the Michael Jordans of losing elections. Every time there’s a close, important race somewhere in the country, they’re bound to show up, run some completely deranged ads, and then proceed to see their favored candidate do terribly. It’s like clockwork.
The 2023 Wisconsin race is notable in the APP’s history as their first major effort following their disastrous results in the 2022 midterms. You’d think that such a massive failure would make them change tactics or even just messaging. It didn’t. The APP would be just as disgusting as ever, spending nearly a million dollars on digital advertising attacking Judge Protastiewicz for supposedly working to make children transgender. And just in case this wasn’t low enough, they’d also falsely target two school boards, even accusing one of medically transitioning children in-school without parental consent. I cannot emphasize this enough: these attacks were outright lies. As they have always done, the APP was going completely all-out in trying to smear and defame their opponents with the tawdriest slander they could think of.
And, yet again, it was a complete disaster. When the election was finally held in early April, Kelly didn’t just lose. He didn’t even just fail to gain ground, in spite of immense outside assistance. He lost ground compared to the February primary election, losing by a staggering eleven points. Kelly did worse than the typical Wisconsin Republican everywhere across the state, from the cities to the suburbs to the rural areas. A huge segment of the Wisconsin electorate that would otherwise back Republicans, and a smaller segment that backed Republicans just two months prior, switched sides to vote for the liberal. The result was an unmitigated catastrophe for Wisconsin conservatives. With this flip, Wisconsin liberals re-gained a majority of the state supreme court, giving them full reign to fix the state’s maps and void whatever extreme right-wing laws they want. It was nothing less than the end of the entire conservative project in the state as we’ve known it for more than a decade. Walker’s machine died that night.
On one hand, it’s important to acknowledge that the question of trans rights was not the defining issue of the election or the sole reason the result went the way it did. Democrats (quite logically) made abortion rights the center of their campaign while also hitting Republicans on a long-since-honed-in message on small-d democratic principles. Kelly, for his part, is a legendarily poor candidate who has never won an election in the state. But it was still a factor. It was the final card Republicans played at their last chance to hang onto power, and it failed. No matter which way you put it, transphobic prejudice was, yet again, right at the scene of the crime for a historic GOP disaster.
May 16, 2023: Jacksonville Mayoral
For the second major election on this list, we head down south to a state that I don’t think needs any introduction when it comes to trans issues. Yes: this is that Jacksonville. The big one in the big state itself: Florida. The land of Ron DeSantis, where wokeness reportedly goes to die and liberal arts colleges are run by Chris Rufo. For reasons that should probably be obvious, I’ve never before brought up this state as a positive example of trans rights on the ballot. Up until now, I’ve tentatively written off the state as a politically unique exception to the rule if only because there’s nothing else I could really do. It would have been nice if there was some indicator that I could have pointed to as proof that Florida had some latent tolerance, but the results were just too bleak. There was nothing there.
That was until this May. Like most cities around the country, Jacksonville holds its elections on an off-year, meaning that the city was scheduled to elect a new mayor in 2023. Usually, these sorts of contests don’t portend anything meaningful whatsoever for the state of national partisan politics: most cities are deeply left-wing, so their elections resemble a Democratic primary far more than any actual two-party contest. Jacksonville, however, is different. The city is geographically massive, consisting of the entirety of Duval county, from the urban core to the suburbs to the exurbs. As a result, not only are Jacksonville Republicans capable of competing with Jacksonville Democrats in local elections, but they’ve historically held the advantage. They’ve held the mayoralty near-continuously since the mid-1990s, just as Republicans at the national level have almost always won the county.
This Republican strength in Jacksonville had been a fact of life in Florida politics for decades. Even while the state was competitive, the city still voted for Republicans by large margins, notably playing a crucial role in helping George W. Bush keep the state close as he lost it to Al Gore in the 2000 election. But after Trump took over the party in 2016, it seemed as if change was afoot in the city. Even as he won Florida in 2016, he only carried Duval county by around one point. In 2020, he outright lost the county by nearly four points even as he improved his margin in Florida overall. While trends in the state as a whole looked pessimistic for Democrats, Jacksonville did come across as one possible exception.
The 2022 results would put even that in doubt. As he rolled to a landslide victory across the state, Ron DeSantis would mop up in Jacksonville, too, carrying Duval by 12 points. This result represented a substantial 16-point shift to the right that matched trends across the state as a whole. The city’s Democratic revival, it seemed, was something of a mirage. The small edge they had built up in the city under Trump looked to be no match to the larger forces at work in the state. While the relative trends in the city were still promising on paper, it didn’t seem to matter much given where the state seemed to be heading.
This would be the mindset adopted by local Republicans as they headed into the citywide elections earlier this year. With the incumbent Republican mayor term-limited, the mayorship was wide open, allowing any aspiring local GOPer an open shot to win the office. Several candidates would run, but the party’s voters would quickly coalesce around Daniel Davis, a former state representative and sitting president of the local Chamber of Commerce. Davis was a perfect example of an establishment Jacksonville pol, supported by the same collection of business interests who backed the sitting mayor, Lenny Curry. This didn’t sit well with some conservatives who wished for a more ideologically motivated mayor, leading them to back LeAnna Cumber, a city council member, as an alternative to Davis’ right.
This would set Davis down an increasingly rightward path that would define the rest of his campaign. Spooked by a legion of national endorsements coming in for Cumber, he started running to her right, trashing his own reputation as a results-focused moderate. His calculus here was that this was probably all he needed to do to win. Once he locked up the Republican vote, he could just sit back and let the incompetence of Florida Democrats carry him into office. When the results came in for the March primary, Davis would see that he had done the former successfully—but that the latter was no longer guaranteed. Breaking from their standard practice of utter failure, Florida Democrats would actually get a strong recruit for this race: a local newscaster named Donna Deegan well-known locally for her breast cancer awareness advocacy. With Deegan leading the Democratic slate, the party would combine for a total of 48% of the vote in the primary, far outperforming the numbers recorded by Charlie Christ the year prior.
This put Davis in an unexpectedly weak position. He had seemingly expected Florida’s new rightward lean to carry him into office by default, but the primary results showed a Jacksonville resembling the pre-2022 years of a competitive Florida far more than the Jacksonville seen in 2022. While his conservative pivot was sufficient at satisfying Republicans, it also seemed to have turned off many voters who weren’t interested in a partisan bomb-thrower in a local office. As such, he found himself trailing Deegan in the polls by surprisingly wide margins.
Usually, a politician in such a position would move towards the center. Davis very well could have. His attacks on Cumber, while vicious and partisan, weren’t issue-oriented: in fact, his main critique of her was her record of donating to Democratic politicians in the past. But Davis wouldn’t do it. Believing for some reason that there was a segment of diehard DeSantis Democrats he needed to win over to win, he moved even further to the right during the general election campaign. He’d lean heavily on his state’s Governor, framing his cause as nothing less than the cause of Ron DeSantis himself. He started advertising “parent’s rights” as a core issue of his campaign. His immersion in right-wing culture warring would reach such a degree that he would skip his scheduled debate with Deegan to appear at the Fraternal Order of Police building for a town hall with Moms for Liberty, a far-right anti-trans organization founded in 2021 (thanks to The Nation’s Jeet Heer for finding this). That night, right as Deegan was discussing her platform with a roundtable of local journalists on live TV, he declared that he would sign their official pledge, forever connecting his campaign to transphobia.
On election day, Davis would fall to Deegan by four points. After making his race a referendum on far-right stances on social issues and DeSantis’ governorship, he lost to a Democrat who simply focused on the issues. Of course, it’s worth not extrapolating too much from this one result: transphobes obviously have a long track record of success in Florida, and this one race doesn’t change that fact. Still, this result could very well represent the limits to such an approach even in a state that has recently been receptive to right-wing culture warring. Voters may be fine with it when it’s coming from a Governor that they’ve already liked for a while, but when it’s coming from some random contender for an open seat, it doesn’t move them. But regardless of what voters truly think, there is no reason for Democrats in the state to look on this race as anything other than a model for success. That’s something they didn’t have before in Florida, and they likely wouldn’t have it now if Davis didn’t run the kind of divisive, far-right campaign that he did.
August 11th, 2023: Ohio Issue 1
For the second statewide election we’ve seen since March, we have another off-year contest in the Midwest. Like in Wisconsin, the stakes were high, but in a very different sense. In this race, conservatives weren’t fighting for the existence of their political machine. Ohio Republicans are very far from that. Like Wisconsin Republicans, they engineered an institutional takeover of the state after the 2010 elections. Also like them, they managed to flip their state from blue to red in 2016. Where Ohio Republicans differ from their Badger State counterparts is that they have never fallen from this peak. After surviving the blue wave year of 2018 with their trifecta intact, they established themselves as the definitive majority party in the state, a status that was only further reinforced in the 2020 and 2022 elections.
But Ohio voters preferring Republican politicians doesn’t necessarily mean that they prefer Republican policies. In most cases, this would be irrelevant, but it isn’t in Ohio. Unlike many other states, Ohio actually allows its voters to vote directly on specific policies through referenda, a process that has repeatedly been used to strike down major parts of the Republican agenda over the past decade. The party would first be introduced to this problem less than a year into their trifecta, when voters struck down a right-to-work bill championed by then-Governor John Kasich by a landslide 62-to-38 margin. Ever since then, the process has always hung over the head of the party, always reminding them of the consequences of going too far with their ideological ambitions.
In some ways, this has actually been something of a benefit for the Ohio GOP. Being forced to face this kind of check has kept them from running to the extreme on some issues in a way other state parties have, which may explain why they have been so resilient compared to their counterparts across the Great Lakes region. But this kind of check only works if the politicians in question are mature enough to accept some kind of give-and-take with voters, an increasingly uncommon quality in the modern GOP. While they’d manage to hold this equilibrium for a while, the question of abortion would make them lose their nerve. In 2019, the incredibly gerrymandered legislature would pass a deeply unpopular near-total ban on the practice, something that went totally unnoticed until the 2022 Dobbs decision suddenly made it state law overnight.
This was never going to be sustainable in Ohio, even with its recent Republican lean. It was only going to be a matter of time before a ballot measure aimed at striking down the legislation was put up for a vote. Such a measure would also be guaranteed to pass. Even Ohio Republicans could see this. Facing the prospect of a new constitutional amendment that could throw out all of their “progress” on the issue and with no direct path to stop it, they decided that their only move forward was to change the rules of the game. This summer, they snuck an initiative named “Issue 1” on the ballot. The purpose of this initiative was to change state law to make ballot measures far more difficult to put up for a vote and require over 60% approval to pass. The logic was simple: if Republicans couldn’t keep their opponents below majority support, perhaps keeping them below supermajority support would be a bit more manageable. And just in case it wasn’t clear enough that this vote was intended to keep abortion illegal, they scheduled it to occur almost immediately after they filed it so it would precede the abortion referendum, which is set to occur this November.
The intention here was clearly to fast-track the election so it could be approved on low turnout by voters who didn’t understand what it was doing. But unfortunately for Ohio Republicans, voters aren’t quite that stupid. It became immediately clear to Ohioans that this measure was more or less a proxy for the right to choose, and, as such, it quickly fell behind in the polls. This made things very clear for the Ohio GOP: if they were going to somehow salvage this, they needed to change the narrative. Their strategy? What else: try to make the election about trans people.
In this, conservatives would concede to the most obvious of their opponents' accusations. Yes, they said, it’s true: this ballot measure is intended to thwart the upcoming referendum in November. But then they pivoted, saying that voters should still approve it anyways, because they had just found out that the November vote was not about abortion at all! Indeed, they said, the language in the ballot would allow minors to receive gender-affirming care without parental permission! Doesn’t that scare you? Don’t you disapprove of that? Even you baby-killing liberals have to hate trans people, right?
Republicans would spend millions through groups named things like “Protect Women Ohio” and the “Center for Christian Virtue” trying to make trans issues front-of-mind for voters when they went to the polls in August. By the time the election itself came, both sides knew that it was essentially a dress rehearsal for the ultimate election in November. The results would carry major implications for Republicans. After being smacked up and down the canvas for over a year over the abortion issue, had they finally found a solution? Could the trans panic card negate the ever-imposing Democratic advantage on the issue? If it did, and the measure passed, they would not only secure a massive policy win in Ohio. The entire Republican Party as a whole would finally find the winning message on social issues that they’ve been desperately searching for for over a year.
It became clear very early in the night that the GOP was going to have to keep searching. In a state that has had a very strong Republican bent since the 2016 election, Issue 1 fell by a landslide 57-to-43 margin. The measure did horribly everywhere across the state, from post-industrial Obama-Trump heartlands to affluent Romney-Biden suburbs. After being bombarded with advertising that ceaselessly told them that a vote for abortion rights was a vote for trans rights, voters responded, with a clear voice, that they were perfectly fine with that.
At first glance, these races, especially the ones in Wisconsin and Ohio, seem like a clear-cut case of Republicans learning nothing from their past failures. After trying and failing at winning with transphobia from 2016, to the midterms last year, to countless elections in between, conservatives just keep on banging their heads against the wall, spending millions in attempts to squeeze water out of a stone. This is true, at least to an extent. Not only is the issue the same, but the strategy is, too. The attacks employed by Republicans in both races were highly similar to the ones they have employed in prior elections. The lies are as hysterical and despicable as they’ve always been. And, just like before, it didn’t work. So, sure, these elections stand as strong further confirmation of what we talked about in March. But is there a new story here?
I would say yes. While the anti-trans attacks made by Republicans are almost identical in content to the attacks they made in 2022, the role of these attacks in Republican strategy has changed. During last year’s midterms, transphobia played a major, but fundamentally auxiliary, role. Republicans could not conceive that they could be on the wrong side of literally any issue. From education to the economy to foreign policy, they operated as if every single aspect of their platform was supported by a supermajority of voters. It’s why they never saw the Dobbs effect coming: they couldn’t conceive of abortion as an issue because they couldn’t conceive of anything as an issue. They were supremely arrogant, supremely amateurish, and supremely out over their skis.
Then they were smacked across the head by reality so hard that it guaranteed Biden dozens of judges. The results across the country were far too staggeringly bad for them to live in their post-2021 fantasies for any longer. The Wisconsin and Ohio races showed us what adjustments they’ve made in light of this, and they’ve made one thing perfectly clear. While conservatives may be willing to concede to reality on a few topics, they will not do so when it comes to trans people. Nothing in the world is going to stop them from spending millions of dollars to scream about top surgery at the top of their lungs every time there’s an election. The issue, despite being as new as it is, has grown to take on a near-religious significance in their minds. Against all of the evidence to the contrary, they are absolutely convinced that it is a winning issue.
Well, it’s not. These results and the results preceding them should be more than enough to prove this. But Republicans refuse to recognize this fact, which is a very important thing to keep in mind beyond its obvious absurdity and the evident danger it presents to trans people. Much has been made recently about the GOP’s failure to even consider moderating after its recent failures. But it might be worth considering that the GOP thinks that it has already made this effort to move closer to where voters are. While we would imagine this to be something like, say, being less extreme on abortion or climate change, they see it as being even more transphobic. So, every time they recognize that the number of winning issues for their side is smaller than they previously thought, they slot in even more anti-trans hatred to make up the gap.
As the 2024 election comes closer and closer into view, I think it’s useful to think about what Republicans do in this light and to expect even more political transphobia as a result of it. Already, we’re seeing the window of strong positions for the GOP starting to narrow. The economy has steadily improved, reducing the potency of their once-ubiquitous meltdowns about inflation. Going into hysterics about crime has become a little bit more difficult to do well while the most indicted man of all time is their presumptive nominee. And the less and less that “typical” issues like these factor into GOP messaging, the more transphobia will. If things go a certain way, we could very well be on track for a presidential election where a major party’s entire national message is dominated by mental breakdowns over furries and drag queens.
I’m not entirely sure as to what the result of such an election would look like. But if I were a Republican, I would not be interested in finding out.
Ettingermentum Newsletter is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.