Yesterday was a shameful day in the history of the Republican Party. If our founding fathers had acted like the GOP leaders in Cleveland did over the last four days, we’d be offering fealty to an emperor complete with lords and nobles.
Reince Priebus and the Trump campaign (which are now one in the same) displayed no willingness to hear legitimate grievances in the nomination process that produced the worst candidate since the Ford/Rockefeller ticket lost to Jimmy Carter in 1976. They shut down debate on a rules package which would have offered a more united party at the end, regardless of which candidate emerged. They made it very clear that this was not a nominating convention, it was a pageant intended to coronate Donald Trump.
In so doing, they kicked democratic process to the curb. Far from being “the will of the people” that produced Trump as the delegate frontrunner, it was a series of open primaries in states designed to railroad the establishment’s anointed candidate into the nomination. Trump took full advantage of this, without ever achieving a massive supermajority of voters over the primary process, and losing 11 states to Ted Cruz.
Why was democratic process and real discussion shut down behind closed door arm-twisting, retreating behind security guards, and refusing to even negotiate a new rules package or allow it to be voted with a roll call of delegates?
It was fear. Plain, simple fear.
The GOP leaders were actually acting very predictably. They saw what happens when rabid Trump supporters are slighted in any way. They saw the people Trump calls forth from the dark corners of the Internet, into real violence. The same kind of unhinged violence that mars Trump campaigns orchestrated by leftist organizations is right there at Trump’s fingertips to use.
We don’t even know the depths of potential plata o plomo (silver or lead) deals that Trump’s coercion machine produced, silencing media figures, politicians and other leaders. Watch Mike Lee get pilloried for maintaining his Never Trump stand at the convention. Ted Cruz is nowhere to be seen, preferring to fight another day in exchange for a prime time address.
The RNC is more scared of Trump and his Know-Nothings than they are of their own delegates. They are more scared of the carnage they would personally face by a billionaire willing to sue at the drop of a hat, mock reporters, and malign federal judges than they are committed to preserving democracy.
They would rather elect Hillary Clinton to the White House than suffer the retribution of a petulant man-boy vulgarian who has never spent a day in his life working for groceries.
I am not bitter about those who support Trump for their own reasons–to keep Hillary out of the presidency (which is more and more a remote possibility each day). But it’s terribly sad to see the leadership of the party cower in fear and kneel before Zod.
Shame on them all.