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Trump’s GOP and the Race: Polarizing Takes on History

The 2020 GOP Presidential candidates appear to be taking an unprecedentedly polarizing stance on race and history. While some, such as Donald Trump, embrace white nationalism, many others such as Senator Tim Scott and Senator Rand Paul oppose it. Donald Trump has been a catalyst for GOP leaders taking extreme stances on race and history, including off-handed comments about non-white races, as well as comments downplaying the impacts of slavery on American history. His vocal support of white nationalist symbols and organisations has led some to accuse him of emboldening the radical fringe within the Republican Party. Senator Tim Scott, on the other hand, has publicly decryed Donald Trump’s tactics and rhetoric about race and history. In a speech given at the CBSN Town Hall on Race, he made clear that the Republican party needs to both stand up against racism and promote belief in the commonalities that all Americans share. Similarly, Senator Rand Paul has argued in favor of free trade and lessened federal regulation on the economy, while at the same time decrying racism within the GOP. He recently penned an open letter to Governor William Lee attacking those in the Tennessee GOP who resurrected a Confederate monument and publicly denouncing the legacies of slavery and racism. As the 2020 election season heats up, it is abundantly clear that race and history will be a major issue. While Donald Trump stands to the far right in his views, it is comforting to know that others such as Tim Scott and Rand Paul are taking a more conciliatory approach, advocating for solidarity and social justice. Already, the two Senators have made the Republican party more civil and inclusive, disregarding party divides and leading to a better future for the GOP.