Spurred By The Capitol Riot, Thousands Of Republicans Drop Their Party


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«I was completely shocked and ashamed. That’s not how I think of the Republicans — who we were, and who we are,» said Lyle Darrah of the riot at the Capitol. Darrah recently changed his party registration from Republican to Democrat.

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The storming of the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob prompted thousands of Republicans across the country to change their party registrations.

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A Trump supporter holds a sign with a pitchfork as he protests the election outside the Colorado State Capitol on Jan. 6 in Denver.

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She hasn’t spoken with her parents, who are Biden supporters, since the election. They see her as a QAnon conspiracy theorist, she said, but she thinks of herself as a skeptic who does her own research. Now, she fears a civil war — or, at the least, a generation-long rebuilding of conservative politics.

«A party’s got to implode,» she said. «I think that’s what’s happening to the Republican Party, a little bit.»

Others are taking a pragmatic approach: Where will they be able to influence politics the most as Colorado stays reliably Democratic?

«I’ve gotta tell you, the vast majority of my friends are laughing at me, that I switched over to Democrat. They think I’m crazy,» said Martin Lee Hussman, 45.

A well-connected resident of Alamosa in the southern part of the state, he was previously a registered Libertarian but voted for Trump last November. As he watched the fallout of the riots, he decided that Democrats would hold power for the foreseeable future.

«Honestly, I think the Republican Party is dead. I don’t think there’s going to be a Republican Party in the next couple years,» said Hussman, a plumber.

Hussman figured that being registered as a Democrat would help him moderate the party’s candidates by supporting centrist candidates. But Hussman didn’t feel very different after changing his party registration.

«Aw, hell,» Hussman said. «It’s easy to switch back to something else if I don’t like the way this one’s going.»

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