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How the GOP lost its clear voice on foreign policy

“President Biden should withdraw troops to Afghanistan by May 1, as the Trump administration had planned, but better late than never,” he said. “It is time for the war to end forever.”

Hardly new to this controversy, or related to the GOP, many Democrats believe that foreign policy should serve far more heavily than the domestic economic and political goals of the past. But the Democratic chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator Jack Reid, warned that a full withdrawal from Afghanistan could pose a significant national security threat.

For Republicans, the shift comes in the form of their long dominance on inward national security issues and is wandering in international affairs. Mr. Trump rejected Republican foreign policy orthodoxy, but largely struggled to convey a harmonious counter-thought beyond the vague notion of placing America first. He embraced strongmen, kept long-term allies as free riders and supported a transactional approach, rejecting any notion of the kind of values-driven foreign policy that has led the party for decades. Was defined.

The party’s establishment of foreign policy found itself exiled from Mr Trump’s government and fought for relevance against the base of a rebel separatist party.

“To say that a single Republican is to recall the state of foreign policy is what has been happening within the conservative movement on these issues for the past 20 years,” said Lanhe Chen, scholar and policy adviser to the Hoover Institution of prominent Republican officials . . “Characters change, vocabulary changes, but the difference remains.”

Nevertheless, this old debate gives rise to new political resonance for the party, as it confronts the political need to develop a platform that opposes everything that democratic administration does.

“Never do you have a White House and you don’t have control of Congress, it’s a time to look inward and guess what that is,” Mr. Chen said.