President Trump, depending on what poll you believe, enjoys somewhere between 88 and 92% of support from Republican voters. This overwhelming popularity leaves absolutely no room for an insurgent primary challenger, and it makes the idea of taking the primaries seriously an exercise in abject absurdity. If this were a George H.W. Bush we were talking about, there might indeed be room to consider whether we really want to put the incumbent president back at the top of the ticket. But it’s not. It’s Trump. And from every imaginable metric, the writing is on the wall: Republican voters want four more years. Period.
This makes it a waste of time, money, and resourced for state Republican parties to bother with a primary election contest. That’s why four states – Arizona, Kansas, Nevada, and South Carolina – have decided that no such contest will be held. Trump will automatically be declared the Republican nominee in these states. That may seem unfair. It may seem like the heavy hand of The Establishment is protecting the president. But in reality, these states are doing no more than rubber stamping a result that is 100% inevitable.
Mark Sanford, Joe Walsh, and Bill Weld don’t appear to realize this immutable fact. That’s why they – the president’s remarkably weak trio of GOP opposition – took to the pages of the Washington Post on Friday to whine about states canceling their primaries. If only they wouldn’t, these three joke candidates argued, one of THEM might become the Republican nominee for president!
Such foolish optimism should be, by itself, disqualifying for anyone who wants to be the commander-in-chief.
“If a party stands for nothing but reelection, it indeed stands for nothing,” insisted the three. “Our next nominee must compete in the marketplace of ideas, values and leadership. Each of us believes we can best lead the party. So does the incumbent. Let us each take our case to the public. The saying ‘may the best man win’ is a quintessential value that the Republican Party must honor if we are to command the respect of the American people. Cowards run from fights. Warriors stand and fight for what they believe. The United States respects warriors. Only the weak fear competition.”
They just…they just can’t possibly believe this nonsense. There IS no competition, guys. None at all. There is no conceivable universe in which Bill Weld defeats Donald Trump for the Republican nomination. There is no chance in a million that Mark Sanford sends Donald Trump to the lockers. Vegas would not even let you bet on Joe Walsh nabbing the top of the 2020 ticket. It’s bonkers. It’s ridiculous. It’s an insult to the intelligence of the American people.
NeverTrump conservatism was tried and tested in 2015 and 2016. It burned like dry kindling. We don’t need another bonfire to prove what we already know.