Before "conservative" Republican leaders like Senators Lindsey Graham and Mitch McConnell aligned themselves with President Donald Trump and his ties to White nationalism and White supremacy, the term conservative was associated more with a boot straps, small government philosophy.
While it historically ignored inherent bias and institutionalized inequalities that allowed the majority to advance while holding the marginalized from taking advantage of the same opportunities, it was not as openly aligned with Evangelical Christianity and White nationalism and their anti-intellectualism, xenophobia, racism, homophobia and transphobia.
But not every conservative has been willing to align with the new openly bigoted and anti-science agenda pushed by mostly Evangelical Christian and White nationalist leaders in the GOP. There are still some conservative voices of dissent, like Tom Nichols, Rick Wilson, Steve Schmidt and S.E. Cupp.
In a recent OpEd for the New York Daily News, S.E. Cupp weighed in on President Trump's latest obsession: spreading discredited conspiracy theories that exploit the death of Democratic staffer Lori Klausutis to attack MSNBC's Joe Scarborough.
The OpEd is titled:
"How Trump haunts the dead: Our terrible president's awful habit of attacking people who can't defend themselves"
In it, Cupp wrote:
"'Punch up, not down'. Whether in comedy or politics, the consensus precept has provided helpful parameters in which to acceptably swing at rivals or targets. The idea is, pick on someone your own size."
"I can think of no better—meaning worse—example of punching down than one of the most powerful men on the planet picking on the dead and harassing their surviving family members in the process. Even someone with just a modicum of decency and awareness of social mores would know better than to drag the deceased and their relatives through the muck for no good reason at all."
"The President of the United States has neither decency nor awareness, quite obviously."
Cupp is referring to President Donald Trump's repeated posting of disproven conspiracy theories about deceased Democratic staffer Lori Klausutis all to continue a petty feud with a former Trump supporter, Joe Scarborough.
"In the midst of a global pandemic that has nearly claimed 100,000 American lives, and over Memorial Day weekend, when we're meant to soberly honor our fallen soldiers, Donald Trump was tweeting deranged conspiracy theories about a cable news host and his former staffer."
Cupp then provided the facts that everyone but the POTUS and conspiracy theorists seems fully aware of.
"The incident Trump keeps referring to occurred almost 20 years ago. Former Rep. Joe Scarborough's staffer Lori Klausutis, 28 years old at the time, fainted, the result of a heart condition, hit her head on an office desk, and was found dead. Scarborough was in another state at the time, and medical examiners ruled the death an accident."
The conservative pundit was most concerned with the affect Trump's repeated posts on Twitter has on Lori Klausutis' widower and the rest of her family.
"Still, Trump has resurrected the case to baselessly smear Scarborough with no regard to the pain it is causing Klausutis' family."
While Trump seeks to gain points for pettiness, the President gives no regard for Klausutis as a person or her family's grief over her loss. Her widower, T.J. Klausutis, appealed to Twitter to please remove the POTUS' lies about his wife.
Twitter decided the tweets would stay and Trump failed to respond to the widower at all.
Cupp expanded on her criticism of the President's abuse of his privilege to use a private company's website—Twitter—here:
SE Cupp: Trump is melting down on his favorite platformyoutu.be
For Cupp the bottom line was Trump repeatedly displays conduct unbecoming of the office of President.
While the United States can do something about that in November, Twitter can do something about Trump's tweets right now.