COLUMNISTS

If the GOP is ready to rebrand amid Trump's woes, here are my ideas for a post-MAGA party

In an act of humble bipartisanship, I’m reaching a hand across the aisle to the Republicans whose brains have not been turned to pureed Trump steaks and suggesting 10 new slogans that might help.

Rex Huppke
USA TODAY

So say you’re a political party and, on a whim, you decided to stop worrying about annoying things like “policy” and “governing” – BORING! – and just build your brand, cult-style, around one guy with a decades-long history of con artistry and a profound inability to think of anyone but himself.

Then say, for the sake of this total hypothetical, the guy who became your brand lost the last presidential election then not only refused to admit he lost but also wound up neck deep in a half-dozen or so other legal problems, ranging from “possibly inciting an attack on the nation’s Capitol” to “possibly swiping some of the country’s most sensitive top-secret documents and storing them in the basement of his gaudy South Florida golf club.”

All that on its own should be enough to make anyone with functioning brain cells think, “Hmmmm. Maybe we want to move away from this particular brand we’ve established and try something a little less … ummmm … let’s say, ‘obnoxious and potentially criminal.’ ”

Grand Old Party may want to do some Grand Old Rebranding

Now let’s say your party is the Republican Party, the aforementioned guy is Donald Trump and the only part of the above hypothetical that isn’t real is the part where Republicans summon the brain cells to think they might’ve made a terrible mistake.

A logo for the "Official Trump Defense Fund" that Save America Joint Fundraising Committee is fundraising for in light of the FBI search at the Trump Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida on Aug. 8, 2022.

Welcome to today, to the real-life scenario the party once “of Ronald Reagan” and now “of Trump” finds itself in: hurtling toward the November midterm elections with few concrete policy proposals and no narrative for building a better tomorrow, but ample bizarro-world noise coming from a Florida man swiftly losing whatever remains of his marbles.

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Trump is demanding he be made president and clucking like a chicken

On Monday, nearly two years after his failed 2020 presidential election bid, Trump demanded he be instated as the rightful president or that the United States “have a new Election, immediately!”

The next day he was sharing messages directly relating to the bat-guano-bonkers QAnon conspiracy theory along with other sinister memes and online nonsense at such a frantic pace one would think he needs a wellness check.

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Late Wednesday, a Department of Justice court filing included a standard evidence photo showing documents, fully obscured by "TOP SECRET" cover sheets, spread out on a carpet at Trump's Mar-a-Lago country club in South Florida. Trump's response was to accuse the FBI of mishandling classified documents by staging a photo intended to make it look like he "threw documents haphazardly all over the floor."

This image, contained in a court filing by the Department of Justice and redacted in part by the FBI, shows a photo of documents seized during the search on Aug. 8, 2022, by the FBI of former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

The Republican Party is entering a midterm election season that favors GOP candidates. But rather than talking about a still-unpopular Democratic president and the economy, the party is drowning, once again, in the endless ravings and legal perils of a narcissist who previously lost them the House, the Senate and the White House. 

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Maybe Trump is finally scaring a few of his supporters off?

In an act of humble bipartisanship, I’m reaching a hand across the aisle and suggesting this: Maybe it’s time for a rebrand?

There have been signs a few Republicans are gingerly walking away from the havoc hurricane that is Donald Trump. And even the Republican National Committee, which has previously helped the former president with legal fees, has, according to Politico, decided to not pay Trump’s legal bills “related to the FBI’s investigation and retrieval of documents at Mar-a-Lago.”

Perhaps some donors Googled the phrase “throwing good money after bad.”

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For too many, power of the cult of Trump remains strong

But the vast majority of GOP politicians, candidates and officials remain in lockstep with the guy now trashing American law enforcement and screaming bellicose gobbledygook as the legal walls close in.

So here are 10 new Republican branding slogans for those who’ve come to their senses. Free of charge! (If that sounds too much like a liberal handout, you’re welcome to pay me $1 million per slogan.)

10 Sure-Fire Slogans to Help Rebrand the GOP

►“GOP Zero – Same great taste, now with zero Trumps!”

►“The Republican Party 2022 – We’ve Learned Some Tough Lessons.”

►“Vote GOP in 2022: If we had a third chance to impeach him, we for sure would, probably.”

►“Citrus-Free MAGA!”

►“Republicans – Please Excuse Our Mess”

►“The Grand Old Party: Did you know Trump used to be a Democrat?”

►“LOCK HIM UP!”

►“Vote Republican … because we now believe Jan. 6 was real, and boy are we sorry about that.”

►“The New GOP: Hope and Change and Apologies” 

►“Who do you trust to make sure someone like Donald Trump never holds public office again. A Democrat? Hah! Vote Republican. We’re back to being tough on crime!”

More satire and humor columns from Rex Huppke:

Will Florida be consumed by wokeness now that DeSantis' Stop WOKE Act has been blocked?

'Defund the FBI': Trump supporters calmly react to Mar-a-Lago search

Candy corn was already an abomination. Then they made it hot-dog flavored.

Follow USA TODAY columnist Rex Huppke on Twitter @RexHuppke and Facebook: facebook.com/RexIsAJerk