Republican Delegates Must Reclaim Their Stolen Party: Reject Trump and the Establishment System That Spawned Him
No, Donald Trump is not the thief. He took advantage of the party establishment’s corrupted process. Calculating party officials arranged open and winner-take all primaries with hopes of achieving a “moderate” winner in short fashion. For the most part, it worked, unless you expected to win. But this year that process has bitten the party, and hard. George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole, John McCain and Mitt Romney all lost. These were all decent well-intentioned men. But promoters of constitutional conservatism they were not. Only George W. Bush won two terms.
He was a responsible patriot from a family of them. Like father, he was sober in his concern for national security, world stability and for our men in uniform. But George H.W. “I’m not big on the vision thing” and George W. “I sacrificed my free market principles to save the free market” (TARP) Bush were not centered and resolute conservatives. They were nice people. And Washington ethics doesn’t usually define “nice” effectively. Bush won the electoral college in 2000 but was a bit behind Al Gore in the national popular vote. I tend to think that the Republican-controlled Congress would not have cooperated to expand Medicare and federal spending at the fastest pace in 25 years quite so readily had Democrat Al Gore been president. Although today it seems they will fold on anything if the president threatens a government shutdown
George W. Bush questioned the sub-prime mortgage lending that banks submitted to after pressure from Democrats and race hustlers who challenged and threatened to smear them. When Bush was attacked as opposing housing ownership for lower-income people, he relented and joined in celebrating the “ownership society.” Everyone felt fine about it as long as real estate continued to appreciate as it had for decades. The holder got the mortgage payments or the defaulted appreciating property. But those weakly secured loans were traded and wrapped into bundled securities, and circulated through investment holdings. When property values finally dropped instead of escalating, a lot of people were left holding losses and there was an economic shock. And “nice” George W. Bush got the blame.
In the 80s, Reagan had pressed past his own tentative advisers, and achieved success in both domestic and foreign affairs. There has not been a decisive domestic conservative since, and really only Reagan and Coolidge in the 20s in the 20th century. The American people did the work. Reagan just got government out of the way. Today many people have faded or no understanding of how Reagan’s unshackling of the American people restored opportunity and prosperity in America; a testimony to the lack of common-sense education in our mass-culture and unwise education system. 28 years later people are frustrated by the lack of opportunity of years of historically slow major corporation-centered growth. And the Obama-packed judiciary is pushing communities around against their will.
The country needs a conservative president to light a fire under the timid Republican Congress, seed the judiciary with people who understand and respect The Constitution that they swear to, and make America dependable in the world again. And the Republican Party needs a resolute conservative candidate. And Donald Trump is not at all that person. True conservatives know that he is not one. He evinces no interest in the principles of the Republican platform or the American principles of liberty and civil morality, or no knowledge of them. His opinions are neither systematic or firm, changing from day to day; perhaps context to context. Conservatives also know that the greatness that was uniquely American was neither a product of a strongman or a good businessman, if you grant that he is one, which is quite questionable. He’s personally and socially immature; some combination of an oaf and a jerk. This not argued, only cheered by some. In short, you could not design a more ridiculous candidate for the American presidency in a comedy story. And the Republican Party will put this candidate against a Democrat who is less favored than any in history but him? 70% say…SAY they will not vote for him. 40% of Republicans dislike him, and 52% of Republicans have said they want another candidate. I won’t vote to make him president of anything, and I’ve voted in every U.S. presidential election since 1976. I hope I won’t have to leave the top of the ballot uncompleted.
But how did we get here? First, 2 or 3 times as many Democrats as Republicans voted for Trump in the primary season. But there is a segment of sentimentally but not necessarily philosophical conservatives that are not as positively conservative in outlook as they are anti-left and anti-Republican establishment. And Donald Trump has vented their boiling spleens. But the establishment is now promoting Trump because they value the primary system that is a quadrennial year-long fund-raising and advertising goldmine.
The national convention belongs to the delegates who have labored in and been elected through the convention system of this private voluntary association. They craft the platform and work in campaigns. Why should they continue to do that if their party is hijacked by a non-contributing mobocracy without an allegiance to the principles of the party or to public dignity? The delegates should not surrender their party, and if the establishment engineers a coercion or slight of their freedom as elected delegates, it will ironically demonstrate the very skirting of principle that chafes both Trump supporters and genuine conservatives. Would they prefer losing the election, the committed party labor and serving the welfare of the American people to discrediting their self-serving system?