Where Does Caitlyn Jenner Fit Into Modern American Conservatism?

Follow WeTheCommoners Blog on WordPress.com

By Quentin Choy

July 15, 2021

July 13, 2021

I’ve been watching several clips from CPAC featuring speakers like Donald Trump and more. As I looked up news stories from the conference, many of them mentioned Caitlyn Jenner, and the stories weren’t good.

Attacks against Caitlyn Jenner are a signal that their party is sorting out their priorities and internal issues. Who holds control over the party? Evangelical Christians, pro-business Republicans, and right-wing libertarians are all clashing for the mantle of the Republican Party.

Out of power, they’re fighting over the steering wheel on whether to engage with culture war issues or with economic ones.

Caitlyn Jenner became popular a few years ago for transitioning genders. At the time, Bruce Jenner became Caitlyn Jenner, and her transformation was one of the most high-profile examples of transgender Americans.

Caitlyn Jenner is the father of the Kardashians, one of the most famous celebrity families in the United States.

Her Run for California Governor

She attended the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas, Texas. In politics, her goal is to defeat Gavin Newsom in the California gubernatorial recall election.

After enough signatures were received on the petition to recall Governor Newsom, the recall election was allowed to happen.

Many voters who support the recall of Governor Newsom cite his COVID-19 restrictions in California. According to ABC News, organizers of the recall election cited his coronavirus restrictions as the primary reason for the recall efforts.

“People really do want to take citizen government back in their hands and they don’t want the politicians to control every single aspect of their lives, every single minute of the day, even during a pandemic. We’re going to fix it by getting him out of office.”

Randy Economy, senior advisor of recall election effort.

She spoke in several interviews, but was usually vague and light on substance regarding how she would govern. One of the main issues she makes clearest is her stance on transgender students in sports.

According to her campaign website, Jenner believes that her position has been “clear and consistent: biological boys should not be allowed to participate in girls sports. It is a question of fairness.”

Jenner said that she will run for governor again if she loses the recall.

Caitlyn Jenner is a thorough, Trump-supporting conservative. She is pro-business and opposes increased and new taxes.

CPAC Attendees Still Hate Caitlyn

Jenner was excited to attend CPAC, likely hoping to gain support for her efforts to defeat Gavin Newsom in California for the governorship.

Prominent conservatives including former president Donald Trump attended CPAC.

At CPAC, Jenner endured harassment from other attendees who are still hostile to LGBT rights, despite Jenner’s political beliefs and conservative affiliation.

After realizing that she was unwelcome by many CPAC attendees, Caitlyn began to head toward the door. While taking pictures with some supportive attendees, she was harassed by some attendees hostile to transgender people.

A particular CPAC attendee followed her and filmed her on her way out the door.

“What do you think about what they’re teaching the kids in schools, regarding the LGBTQ? What about Jesus Christ, Bruce? Don’t forget about Jesus! Look at that sick freak. Why do people want a picture with him?”

CPAC Attendee following Caitlyn Jenner

As she left CPAC, Caitlyn Jenner seemed disappointed that she received such little support from her own political allies.

What Do the Attacks Mean?

The attacks against Jenner is a revelation of the rift between the Republican Party’s priorities. Should the party emphasize cultural issues like race, censorship, and LGBT rights?

Or, should the party focus on economic issues like tax cuts, deregulation, and reducing the deficit?

Republicans need to sort out what they will prioritize; culture or economics. They seem to be deep in the trenches of the culture wars, but AWOL in the fight for economic relief for Americans.

While both parties need to sort out their cultural and economic fighters, the Republicans have several issues to juggle.

How much should the party embrace Donald Trump following the January 6 insurrection and Senate losses in Georgia?

How strong of a role should religious and evangelical conservatism play versus right-wing conservatism? How can Republicans build a more multiracial, working class coalition?

The attacks on Caitlyn Jenner for her gender identification indicate a party unsure of which way to go.

One user on Twitter described the clashes within the Republican Party regarding Caitlyn Jenner as witnessing a “circular firing squad.”

Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene being sworn in.

Their tweet includes a clash between Caitlyn Jenner and Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) on Twitter.

Tomi Lahren Defends Caitlyn

Prominent conservative of Fox Nation host, Tomi Lahren was one of the few conservatives who defended Caitlyn Jenner.

According to Pink News, Tomi Lahren’s defense of Caitlyn Jenner is out of character. They list several comments and tweets that Lahren has made against the LGBT community.

While I commend Lahren for defending Caitlyn Jenner, I don’t agree with either of them on key policy issues. However, this doesn’t mean that Caitlyn Jenner shouldn’t be defended from homophobia.

Caitlyn Jenner needs to clarify her own position on LGBT rights to avoid looking like a hypocrite in a party that won’t even accept her for who she identifies as.

Jenner responded to Lahren’s defense, thanking her and hoping that the Republican Party can become the “big tent party” for all Americans.

The Left and Caitlyn Jenner

I remember what Caitlyn Jenner underwent the transition and was on the cover of magazines. Many Democrats and cultural liberals applauded her bravery and courage for being such a high-profile example of trans visibility in America.

While the left isn’t overtly hostile to Caitlyn Jenner, they cite her hypocritical views of transgender students not being allowed to compete in sports while Caitlyn Jenner competes in sports tournaments.

From the economic left, Caitlyn Jenner is criticized for her hypocrisy in running a campaign aimed at countering economic elites while being elite herself.

To be fair, Franklin Roosevelt was wealthy when he helped Americans with New Deal programs, earning him the title of being a “traitor to his class.”

Some on the left, while opposing the transphobia aimed at Caitlyn Jenner, aren’t all that surprised at what she endured at CPAC.

In one tweet, Charlotte Clymer describes the attacks as unsurprising and as exactly what to expect.

The left has been very intentional in separating their policy disagreements with Caitlyn Jenner from her identity as a trans woman.

In the same way the left can disagree with people like Candace Owens or Condoleezza Rice doesn’t mean they are against black women.

Caitlyn Jenner is good for the left in that it allows them to distinguish policy differences from identity in the form of race, class, gender, and sexuality.

Hopefully, Caitlyn Jenner’s presence on the political scene can dispel the power that identity politics holds within our modern politics.

Nick Fuentes, the Elephant in the Room

One of the worrying hypocrisies is the way that Nick Fuentes was treated versus how Caitlyn Jenner was treated.

While Nick Fuentes, a 22-year-old avowed white nationalist was banned from attending CPAC, he decided to march into CPAC anyways.

After being banned from Twitter, Fuentes chose to march on CPAC, saying he had already been “canceled.” As he and some kids marched in, they shouted slogans like “America first,” and “white boy summer.”

To my knowledge, Fuentes wasn’t met by attendees with the same sort of hatred as Caitlyn Jenner was, despite him being banned from attending.

His declaration of “America first” threatens the movement and to whatever it is that they stand for.

While I would be somewhat supportive of economic policies that focus on American workers and U.S. manufacturing rather than outsourcing, I don’t think this is what the likes of Nick Fuentes mean.

Unfortunately, there’s a clear racial aspect when people like Fuentes shout the slogan.

I’m not sure about what Tomi Lahren means when she discusses America First, and while I disagree with her on many issues, she’s not the sort of outright white nationalist as Nick Fuentes is.

Can Caitlyn Jenner Squeeze Into What She Describes as the “Big Tent Party?”

Republicans have made inroads in several House elections. Donald Trump grew his percentages of victory among voters of Black and Latino heritage.

The Republican Party is down, but not out.

They need to recalibrate their party’s political stances before the 2022 midterm elections and decide on which direction they want their party to go in terms of economics and the culture wars.

Many Republicans were happy with receiving $1,400 checks despite such legislation being deemed as “socialism” by their party.

No matter which party passes it, regular American voters love having their economic met by a government that always seems to disregard their needs.

I thought that Republicans would look past Caitlyn Jenner’s transgender identity for the larger picture of winning California by removing a Democratic governor.

However, unless the base of Republican voters can agree on what is worth fighting for, Caitlyn Jenner might have to wait outside of that “big tent.”

Quentin Choy, creator of <em>WeTheCommoners Blog</em>
Quentin Choy, creator of WeTheCommoners Blog

Quentin is a student of Political Science. He became interested in history and politics in 2015 watching the Republican and Democratic primaries as well as the 2016 General Election.

He is from Hawaii and currently attends school in Colorado.

Follow WeTheCommoners Blog on WordPress.com

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: