In Friday New York Times column, economist Paul Krugman tore into the Republican Party for pretending not to understand the base it's been pandering to -- thereby allowing Donald Trump to become the presumptive favorite to win the nomination.
"Lack of self-awareness can be fatal," Krugman argued. But "[s]eriously, Republican political strategy has been exploiting racial antagonism, getting working-class whites to despise government because it dares to help Those People, for almost half a century. So it’s amazing to see the party’s elite utterly astonished by the success of a candidate who is just saying outright what they have consistently tried to convey with dog whistles."
However, he added,
What I find even more amazing, however, are the Republican establishment’s delusions about what its own voters are for. You see, all indications are that the party elite imagines that base voters share its own faith in conservative principles, when that not only isn’t true, it never has been...