White House reporter: GOP is now the 'party of Trump'

The Powerhouse Roundtable debates the week in politics on "This Week."
7:13 | 10/22/17

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Transcript for White House reporter: GOP is now the 'party of Trump'
We we got bumped Stewart deliberately trying to. Make folk thing. The demonize people when everybody. To get the base all riled up. Because. It provides a short term tactical advantage. Discontent. Deepened and sharpen. Partisan conflicts. Bigotry seems emboldened. Her politics he's more vulnerable to conspiracy theories. And outright fabrication. Former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush lamenting the state of politics what many perceived as a direct rebuke. A president trop last night now. A message of unity with all five former living president. Gathered together at a benefit for the victims of this season's devastating her. Let's bring in the roundtable now the tackle all the week's news ABC news political analyst Matt Dowd political White House reporter Ileana Johnson. Perry baking junior senior political writer for 538 and ABC news commentator. Cokie Roberts good morning to all of yield. Iowa I want to go back to John Kelly again it was a it was a big week and I do think the debate would have ended there right after his and emotional. Briefing on that. But there were aspects to his remarks that you meant that kind especially troubling will I thought it. At hits the initial part of his conversation obviously how a soldier comes home after they're killed in what happens in a press was very emotional very touching. The problem is that I had as you asked the question is is does he know who we works for. He talks about the sacred ness of gold star families and that we've lost that when he works for our guy that the tactical serve families and attacked John McCain as a prisoner talks about the sacred this. Of women. And he has somebody that said certain things on tape that we're in good at best predatory at best predatory and has been accused by twelve or fourteen different women. A behavior ET seventh says we lost the sacred ness of religion. He works for somebody wanted to ban Muslims and if he read the sermon on the money would probably think it was martian. The president did so I think. Part of what John Kelly did was it was touching but also a left wide open the question of is does he really know the guy that he works. Or at LA do you think he was possibly talking about president trump or not there has I would say I have this right after the fact look I think John Kelly is Smart enough to know that. The least effective way to communicate with trump and to get dirty and is to criticize him directly. So I'd I think and I also think you know it it was clear that he was tacitly criticizing the president. By day and rebuking not only the democratic congresswoman who politicized this but the president who politicize that the gold star families first during the campaign. And then again this past week. And who clearly is culturally course in the way he has talked about women and treated women in his employ. And played in his plate place of work so. I think it's possible I adding there's a relationship between. John John Kelly's remarks like that which I think were addressed to trump fans and trump critics and the former President Bush's remarks. I think that I think were addressed to trump fans and try and critics alike they're not just talking to a one segment of rallies and costly course toward. I mean is is a mildly Tiffany unit and and and a weak women having a lot of conversation about me to and I all of that I look. Isn't going afternoon congressman Wilson was a mistake. And and that's where he really mystic in my view was was saying she politicize it and then he politicize is that by going after her. And and guessed it rock by the way and so it's estimated so uncomfortable for all of this nobody wants to be. In a situation where we're having a conversation. About. The rights and wrongs of notifying someone who's the family of someone who's been killed is just. It's just so it makes is so on. I'm comfortable and that's really been true throughout this presidency we just keep being made uncomfortable over and over you know I was striking and heard a lot but the. The goal stir feelings aside and indeed that was extremely uncomfortable and painful to watch and painful to watch John Kelly having to go right. Through that again. But do you think given. Kelly is very political remarks then and I did try to get to it to this with General Petraeus. Does it change how we view him nor hard as he was so political. It did for musical and I think it was someone who sounds a mobile rains and the president are takes the president wait there's more political moments. In this case I thought Kelly reinforce that I was surprised even out there I was surprised he said the things about cardinals are surprised that things there were. Easily refuted by a video literally was released at least the 24 hours later those comments were not only you know very political there are also in actors I was surprised by the end I would be surprised that Kelly does something like that again and I think he's generally has been seen by people so Washington's what general. Petraeus was saying that he's probably right now yeah I think you please rise. I was my last night made us all feel so great I mean those pictures of those five presidents none of them by the leg that it could trump. Is standing there together and trying to do good. Is justices that's how we feel about America and that's what we love about this country and instead of the cavalry getting constantly used this barrage of hatred. And it's it's very dispirited I'll talk about those comments what. Right by the former president. How significant is that huge I mean I I think that this is just another added effect this is some George W. Bush is now is somebody it basically disappeared for eight years during Barack Obama's term. He went back to Texas went about as does is never said a word. Those words that he said would not have been said but for Donald Trump right and what's been happening in the campaign and Steve Bennett I think what you have to what has to be recognized now by Republicans. And by many conservatives who have resisted. Donald chump is that the Republican Party as they know it is gone. If this is a party that would never nominate Lincoln again would never nominate Teddy Roosevelt Reagan certainly wouldn't nominate Ronald Reagan in this and at that party is coming might as well get HG wells maligned get back in a time machine a and find the party that they think still insist. It's called. I think that's true and I Bush's remarks jumped out to me I know we heard from President Obama this week and we heard from John McCain. But bush made a point of disappearing from the public stage for eight years during the Obama presidency and that's a courtesy that he's obviously not reacting to president trump. And he talk not only about that bigotry conspiracy theories but at that America's role in the world right and that's a debate that. Trump head is at first Rand Paul brought it up up in you when. Around his election but the trump has really brought to the fore about that isolationism in internationalism. And that's something that I don't think the Republican Party has resolved its at the heart of the debates that we're having right now. But I I do think that Matt is right that Republican Party is it added point and deep identity crisis but. That being said I don't think bush speaking up about this is really going to have been very much of an I married I think the party's gonna move forward it is the party trump now.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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