Mercedes Schlapp Has Her Duke of Norfolk Moment

Mercedes Schlapp casts herself as a principled conservative in Washington, D.C. She is a lobbyist at Cove Strategies in Washington and her lobbying group has taken money from Koch Industries, Dow Chemical Company, WalMart, Comcast, Verizon, and others.

Note that Mercedes says she is not actually a lobbyist. She just happens to have co-founded a lobbying firm that prefers the euphemism “governmental and public relations firm, i.e. an organization that tries to convince conservatives that various companies’ business interests are conservative, etc. Like her current defense of Trump, it’s all word games and technicalities.

She makes money by, among other things, getting access to the corridors of power to make a case for companies.

She is also a political commentator and in that role has called Donald Trump an amateur, thought he got “punked by Chris Matthews”, and thinks he should apologize for his comments about Hispanics. In fact, according to Mercedes Schlapp on Trump’s immigration position, Trump’s

approach is short-sided and harmful to the Republican party. He may want to tug at the emotional strings of some by stating that he would create a big wall and have Mexico pay for it, but Trump is also creating fear among Americans without offering a thoughtful and realistic solution to the growing problem of the U.S. immigration system.

But Trump is the nominee now. So guess what? Mercedes Schlapp has to get on board with Donald Trump. Should Trump get elected and Schlapp not be on board, she will not find a receptive audience for her clients.

So now, doing her part, she’s after me and others for continuing to oppose Donald Trump.

It is so embarrassing to see good people sell out so cheaply because Trump is the nominee. Likewise, the argument is a first grade argument.

If I don’t vote for Hillary Clinton, is that a vote for Donald Trump? If not, then why is not voting for Trump a vote for Hillary Clinton? It may certainly give Republicans an air of superiority as they suck up to Trump, but what are the odds that the election comes down to one vote from one guy in Georgia?

Ultimately, I think the real problem here is two fold.

People like Mercedes Schlapp are, in fact, lobbyists and that requires a certain amount of team sport and sucking up to the team leaders in order to keep the paycheck coming. And that means, occasionally, that after months of calling Trump an amateur and saying how terrible he’d be as the nominee with Hispanics and for the long term future of the GOP, they have to scream even louder at the rest of us to make up for their sins of daring to criticize the nominee.

But there’s more to it as well. It’s that by some of us holding firm and refusing to sell out our principles, it casts a greater light on their selling out. They have get us to sell out too so they feel better about their own selling out. As a friend of mine noted the other day, it’s reminiscent of the exchange between the Duke of Norfolk and Sir Thomas More in “A Man For All Seasons”.

The Duke of Norfolk: Oh confound all this. I’m not a scholar, I don’t know whether the marriage was lawful or not but dammit, Thomas, look at these names! Why can’t you do as I did and come with us, for fellowship!

Sir Thomas More: And when we die, and you are sent to heaven for doing your conscience, and I am sent to hell for not doing mine, will you come with me, for fellowship?

Lastly, it is worth noting still that the arguments for Trump with all those willing to abandon principle for team sport because Trump’s version of evil has an elephant mascot amount to “he’s not Hillary.” Maybe not, but he is just as bad, team mascot be damned.

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Erick Erickson

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