Saturday, March 19, 2016

Trump Looms Large as GOP Slouches Towards Cleveland

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This week several Republican pundits have expressed real fear about a possible Trump Presidency, for instance David Brooks of the New York Times

Donald Trump is an affront to basic standards of honesty, virtue and citizenship. He pollutes the atmosphere in which our children are raised. He has already shredded the unspoken rules of political civility that make conversation possible. In his savage regime, public life is just a dog-eat-dog war of all against all.
As the founders would have understood, he is a threat to the long and glorious experiment of American self-government. He is precisely the kind of scapegoating, promise-making, fear-driving and deceiving demagogue they feared.
Trump’s supporters deserve respect. They are left out of this economy. But Trump himself? No, not Trump, not ever.
~ Brooks in his NYT Op-Ed

Next, from Erick Erickson and other members of "Conservatives Against Trump"

Source Here
This morning I participated in a meeting of grassroots conservative activists from around the country who are committed to opposing Donald Trump. We have agreed to release the statement below:

We are a group of grassroots conservative activists from all over the country and from various backgrounds, including supporters of many of the other campaigns. We are committed to ensuring a real conservative candidate is elected. We believe that neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump, a Hillary Clinton donor, is that person.

We believe that the issue of Donald Trump is greater than an issue of party. It is an issue of morals and character that all Americans, not just those of us in the conservative movement, must confront.

We call for a unity ticket that unites the Republican Party. If that unity ticket is unable to get 1,237 delegates prior to the convention, we recognize that it took Abraham Lincoln three ballots at the Republican convention in 1860 to become the party’s nominee and if it is good enough for Lincoln, that process should be good enough for all the candidates without threats of riots.

We encourage all former Republican candidates not currently supporting Trump to unite against him and encourage all candidates to hold their delegates on the first ballot.

Lastly, we intend to keep our options open as to other avenues to oppose Donald Trump. Our multiple decades of work in the conservative movement for free markets, limited government, national defense, religious liberty, life, and marriage are about ideas, not necessarily parties.

Then there is Stuart Stevens, seasoned political consultant, who can't stop ranting about the disaster of Trumpism for his party:

The GOP is hoping that in the next few weeks Ted Cruz and John Kasich can win enough votes and delegates away from Donald Trump to keep him from becoming the Republican nominee for President. But what happens if he is still the delegate leader when they get to the convention floor?

Just the phrase "brokered convention" instills real fear, and yet somebody has to do something:

Ted Cruz: "It would be a disaster"

Stephen Colbert poked fun at Republicans for using the ephemism "Open Convention": "Honey, we don't have an broken marriage, we have an open marriage instead!" He also said:

"See when a candidate wins a primary, he really wins delegates who are committed to him at the convention, but only for the first ballot . . . So if Donald Trump doesn't get 1,237 delegates in the first round of voting, they're all free to vote for whoever, which is great news. The Republican campaign could start all over again. But this time it's all one week: You can binge-watch the death of the GOP."

Trump sent a clear message to all those praying for an open, broken, borked, or brokered convention:

"I think you'd have riots. I think you'd have riots ...I'm representing a tremendous many, many millions of people."
~~ Trump on CNN's New Day

Later he rolled back that answer, saying through surrogate Chris Christie that he didn't mean literal riots:

Via The Hill
“I don’t think he meant literal riots,” Christie said during a press conference in New Jersey, according to The Wall Street Journal. "I think he meant political riots."
Still, Christie, who has endorsed Trump and appeared with him at campaign rallies, predicted that a contested convention selecting the Republican nominee would generate outrage.
“If someone goes in with the most delegates, the most votes, and then they are denied the nomination by what they consider to be political insiders, I think there would be real upset at that convention,” he said. The Republican National Convention will be held in Cleveland in July.

Ex-nominee in 2012 Mitt Romney has been leading the charge to a brokered convention as part of the "Stop Trump" movement, and just yesterday he pledged support to Ted Cruz, even though they are rather strange bedfellows - an Evangelical firebrand and a moderate Mormon.

Trump was not amused, of course, and wasted no time lambasting Romney, joking in Utah that he loved Mormons because they were so hard-working, but he wasn't sure Romney was really a Mormon.

Trump also tweeted at Cruz and Romney:

Back to Stuart Stevens, GOP pundit:

Protesters outside his Utah rally minced no words:

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