The Republican Party’s botched efforts to stop Trump

The Republican Party is trying to stop Donald Trump from getting its nomination, but every effort so far has self-destructed.  The other candidates are refusing to bow out to consolidate behind one contender.  Public criticism of Trump seems to have started too late.  Donors and political operatives are paralyzed.  So reports the New York Times, with some relish.

Read the excerpt and follow the link.  Then read my thoughts after the jump.

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Supporting the Republican, even if it’s Trump?

In Thursday’s debate, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, and John Kasich all ripped into Donald Trump.  But then, in response to a question, they all agreed that if he gets the Republican nomination, they would support him.

That made me lose respect for all of these candidates.  If their criticisms of Trump are true–that he is a genuinely bad man and would make a terrible president–how could they ever support him?

Since when should loyalty to a political party trump (sorry) loyalty to one’s country?  Or to one’s principles?

I suppose they felt bound by their pledge in the very first debate to support the eventual nominee, which everyone but Trump–who was at the time a very unlikely winner–agreed to!  But still, as it says somewhere in the Lutheran confessions, immoral vows are not binding.

I stand with Ben Sasse on this issue.  (Read his open letter on why he would rather break from the Republican party than support a Trump candidacy.)  What about you? [Read more…]

Romney’s plan to stop Trump

Mitt Romney is emerging as the point man in the Republican party’s effort to stop Donald Trump.  He gave a blistering speech attacking the front runner for his character, his honesty, his policies, his intelligence, and his business prowess.  And he is putting forward a plan to keep Trump from getting the 1,237 he needs to be nominated.  This involves encouraging Republicans to vote for the specific non-Trump candidate who has the best chance of beating him in each state (Kasich in Ohio, Rubio in Florida, etc.).  Instead of  rallying behind a single candidate, the strategy would be to split up the delegates so that no one, including Trump, has a majority.  Then the convention would be deadlocked and could turn to. . . .Who?  Romney?

What do you think of this strategy?

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It could really be Trump vs. Sanders

Donald Trump really could win the Republican nomination.

Bernie Sanders really could win the Democratic nomination.

What if either one of them were elected?  If you support neither of these candidates, if they were the nominees, which would you vote for?  Of the two, which one do you think would win?

Franklin Graham quits Republicans, but not politics

Evangelist Franklin Graham, son of Billy, has quit the Republican party, due to the way the GOP-led Congress abandoned  the goal of defunding Planned Parenthood so as to pass the budget.  But he hasn’t abandoned politics.  He is planning to hold rallies in all 50 states to encourage Christians to vote for “godly leaders” of whatever party who will support “Biblical values.”

Might this effort bring back Christian conservatism as a political force?  Will this non-partisan or perhaps anti-partisan initiative change that kind of political involvement? [Read more…]

Budget deal gives White House everything it wanted

The House of Representatives, which controls the nation’s purse strings, is dominated by Republicans.  But they just agreed to a budget deal that includes $680 billion in new spending and special-interest tax cuts.  The White House is claiming total victory.  The deal gives the Obama administration what it wanted on Obamacare, immigration, and the environment.  Planned Parenthood will keep its government funding.  Pretty much the only thing Republicans got in return was an end to the ban on oil exports.  Rush Limbaugh is calling for the Republican Party to be disbanded. See this for details.

UPDATE:  The House adopted the budget.

UPDATE:  So has the Senate, and the President has signed it.  Look, this budget does some good things, like give more money to the military, including giving troops a raise.  But it’s a return to the old deficit spending, reversing the budget reforms (for example, the agreement to balance new spending by making cuts elsewhere) of a few years ago.

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