Are 'barstool' Republicans the future of the GOP?

Are 'barstool' Republicans the future of the GOP?
Make America Great Again hat in support of Donald Trump at a rally at Veterans Memorial Coliseum at the Arizona State Fairgrounds in Phoenix, Arizona. // Gage Skidmore

In today's society, there are two types of Republicans: the traditional ones focused on upholding the party's governing standards of the past and the boisterous 'barstool Republicans" who appear to be dead set on steering the party in an entirely different direction.

The ideology of barstool Republicans dates back to early 2016. Barstool founder Dave Portnoy adopted a persona that magnified an aggressive political approach similar to former President Donald Trump's style of politics.

The two are also similar where their disdain for the media is concerned. In 2016, Portnoy spoke with CBS News where he offered a depiction of his take on politics as he suggested "there's a sentiment among frat guys, lacrosse players, and middle-class, affluent, white kids that they're getting kind of persecuted. Trump's an 'F you' to a society who's telling us we're a bad guy, because we like hooking up with girls on Spring Break."

Now, the Bulwark poses one compelling question: Do barstool Republicans really have the power to overtake the traditional GOP?

Author Tim Miller explains the larger issue that will likely lead to a clash in the near future:

"Here's the problem: Barstool has always been intentionally nonpolitical. They have a lot of personalities who draw a broad audience, not just right-wingers, so getting co-opted by the GOP's Model UN super nerds like Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz doesn't work for their brand at all."

Due to their nonpolitical background, Miller argues: "So here's the political bottom line: While it's true that anti-PC country-club bros have affixed themselves more firmly into the GOP, the notion that this nonpolitical Barstool set will stick with the Republicans en masse after Trump is gone might be more wishful thinking than reality."


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