So now, America has a better sense of who Cliven Bundy truly is. Not only has he broken the law, but he has some rather repulsive racist "ideas". And all the Republican politicians & pundits who have rushed to Bundy's defense must now defend their own shortsighted comments in support of Bundy.
And yes, they now have no choice but to face the cold, hard truth. Media Matters now has the video. And Cliven Bundy himself has doubled down on his outrageously racist remarks.
The Washington Post's Paul Waldman sees this as a wakeup call to America that racism still hasn't died just yet. Salon's Joan Walsh sees this as the result of "TEA" powered media outlets fanning the flames of "Culture War". And both Washington Monthly's Ed Kilgore & Maddow Blog's Steve Benen just see this as Republicans having to own their own beloved "Range War Folk Hero".
And really, they're all correct. Race still matters. "The Culture War" doesn't. And Republicans here in Nevada & elsewhere must now deal with the consequences of endorsing Cliven Bundy's "Range War".
However, there's another factor at play here. It's one that Digby pointed out at Salon earlier today. And it's one that we've explored here from time to time.
There's a reason why so many Republican politicians have become merry Culture Warriors. They're pandering to the 21st Century Know Nothings. They've been using these "Culture War" issues to pander to culturally conservative white voters since the 1960s, and they've been hoping they can continue using this trick to win elections.
After all, this trick had been helping them distract voters from the issue they'd rather not talk about: their ineffective & unpopular economic policies. Not only has austerity handicapped economic growth, but it's also proving to be a rather big loser among voters. With federal unemployment insurance (UI) left in tatters for nearly four months and overall federal investment only slightly above the severe austerity levels it's been forced into since 2011, the American people are finally fed up with "The Hunger Games: Real Life Edition".
And Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) gets it.
This is the reality behind #BundyRanch and all the other G-O-TEA attempts to prolong their "Culture War". It's not actually about "range warfare", at least not to the G-O-TEA political operatives who made this into a national story. It's just another "Culture War" campaign to direct anger away from the class warfare we've endured for over 30 years, and in particular from the G-O-TEA austerity regime we've had in place since 2011.
Cliven Bundy was supposed to be a convenient pawn for ambitious G-O-TEA politicians. Instead, he's become an inconvenient scandal. And the "Range War" he was supposed to win has only become another reminder of the "war" the G-O-TEA is losing.