The Republican Wing of the Republican Party

Mitt Romney’s been going around saying he’s from “the Republican wing of the Republican party.” This is a strange allusion to Howard Dean, who, in 2004, would often say he was from the “democratic wing of the Democratic party.” That line had been appropriated from the late, sainted Paul Wellstone who used to say it often.

But here’s the thing. Wellstone, and then Dean, were using the original meaing of the word “democratic” to make a point. They were small-d democrats: grassroots, of the people, against the establishments. What the hell does the “Republican wing” of the GOP even mean? That unlike his opponents he’s opposed to monarchy? And if that’s what’s he’s saying, where was he in 2000, when the entire party establishment coalesced around nominating the son of the party’s last president?

Chris Hayes is the host of All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC.

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