Taking the shortest possible historical view, David Brooks writes:
The Bob Corkers of the [Republican] party are leaving while the Roy Moores are ascending. Trump himself is unhindered while everyone else is frozen and scared. As a result, the Republican Party is becoming a party permanently associated with bigotry.
(“A Philosophical Assault on Trumpism,” New York Times print edition 3 October 2017, p. A27)
Mr. Brooks’s verb phrase “is becoming” is in the present progressive tense. But wouldn’t an accurate grammar of the past require the historical record to include, at the least, Richard Nixon, Strom Thurmond, Rush Limbaugh, and Lee Atwater and his Gadarene pigpen of Republican operatives? Shouldn’t Mr. Brook’s sentence therefore be in the present perfect: “The Republican Party has become a party permanently associated with bigotry”?
Or even with an intensifier — “The Republican Party has long since become a party permanently associated with bigotry”?