Nominating Process Not Rigged, Crooked, Undemocratic, In The Way Trump Team Suggests
Trump and his minions have been calling the Republican nominating process unfair and “rigged” to take the nominating process from him. How about a little clarity on the matter, which may not be found on television. Unfortunately, this weekend I listened to the so-called FOX Political Insiders agree with the charge. Doug Schoen even described the delegates as “party insiders who are controlled by party bosses.” Schoen is a Democrat as is Pat Caddell. Former Republican Congressman John LeBoutlier just nodded his assent. But I’ve been a delegate to Texas Republican Conventions. I and the majority of conservative thousands were not controlled by anyone. Sometimes convention officers had to try to work around us. In any case, Trump’s support percentage could not reach double digits among these conventioneers. Trump is not conservative, not dignified, and not at all compelling among serious Republicans.
FOX has given Trump a measure of esteem and admiration that I find utterly (if anything that’s mild) unmerited. Perhaps it has something to do with fellow billionaire FOX owner Rupert Murdoch’s support of Trump. Or maybe the New Yorkers at FOX have over time been the subject of Trump’s “kindness.” And maybe these people are just not as politically astute as they may pose to be. In any case, it’s certainly not Trump’s conservatism, of which there is little or none, and appears relatively thin at FOX as well. Frankly, CNN’s on-air team may be a bit more sentimentally liberal and closer to Trump, but their treatment is not the disturbing gush you may find at FOX News.
But “rigged” means the system is fixed to restrain or promote something. Have “bosses” fixed this one to restrain Trump’s participation? Of course not, or he wouldn’t even be where he is. His charges are to animate his followers. But like churches, civic clubs or any private organization, The Republican Party exists to promote some ideals and objectives. So it is “rigged” to revere those values. If you don’t share them, you could find a different organization or plug a whole lot of people into the party to change it. A) that isn’t just strolling off the street to vote. People have invested time and energy to sculpt a platform and rules they can agree on. And B) Even if you got those hordes of people to change the ideals, you should not be surprised if those who revered them find it no longer attractive. Heretics to Christian orthodoxy won’t be appointed or elected to any position of influence in a church. They won’t even be voting members. Donald Trump is a Republican heretic on many scores.
The Republican Party has voting members, and yes there is push-pull between those who think promoting its ideals assertively will work best and those who believe caution is politically expedient. But it is not a pure democracy. The United States was not even intended to be, though it descends in that direction. But that’s why there was a Constitution. It was rules to define the limits of public office-holders and yes, even of the public itself, though they were to have control of that process. There are people who control any game. But there are rules that define how it operates. Most people do not pay close attention to what and how political parties advance their ideals. If those people don’t like them and don’t even get involved, it’s no surprise that people who do and become delegates might be rather averse to non-participant efforts to commandeer the party.
The Republican Party has no obligation to jettison its principles for an unsympathetic group of non-participants; especially if they are a minority. If Trump has a majority of delegate votes on a ballot, he will be the nominee under the current rules. I wouldn’t be that kind. I wouldn’t surrender to unprincipled interlopers. After the party tried to arrange the process and open many primaries to non-party members hoping to advance a relatively ambiguous frontrunner, with Trump they were hoist on their own petard. But if Donald Trump wants to promote foreign objectives, he should invest his time and resources in another party.