Blog No. 105. Which Route for a RINO: Will or Paulson?

For purposes of this blog, we are assuming that most RINOs are among the growing number of Republicans who find the nomination, or worse yet the election, of Donald Trump to be categorically unacceptable. There are, of course, many others in the #NeverTrump movement and our comments are for them as well.Which Way Rhino

We have sometimes disagreed with George Will, most recently for what we saw as his unfortunate support of Brexit. Nevertheless, we have long admired his intellect, integrity and lively prose. And it doesn’t hurt that he is a Chicago Cubs fan. (See Blog No. 37 “Of George Will, the Chicago Cubs and RINOs.”  Thus, we were saddened last week by Will’s disclosure that, in light of the almost certain nomination of Donald Trump, he had ended his registration as a Republican. The Republican Party, in its confused and embattled condition can ill-afford the loss of someone of Will’s stature and judgment.

We share without reservation the unmitigated disdain, indeed contempt, that Will’s held for Trump. For example:

The pornographic politics of Trump’s presidential campaign, which was preceded by decades of ignorant bile (about Barack Obama’s birth certificate and much else), have not exhausted Trump’s eagerness to plumb new depths of destructiveness.

Nevertheless, we disagreed with Will’s attack on Paul Ryan for yielding the tepid endorsement that Trump had wrung from him. We believed, contrary to Will, that Ryan’s denial of an endorsement would not have been effective in stopping Trump, and would have served no useful purpose. At the same time, it would have endangered Ryan’s tenure as Speaker, a position in which he will be badly needed, no matter whether the president is Trump or Clinton. Will, of course, is not Speaker and holds no position in the government or the party and his decision may well have been the correct one for him. But would it be for the rest of us?

A June 24 op-ed by Hank Paulson, Treasury Secretary under George W. Bush, suggested a different route. Writing in the Washington PostPaulson described in detailed and scathing terms, why the election of Trump would be “unthinkable.” Unlike Will, however, Paulson did not propose to leave the Republican Party, but suggested an alternative:

As a Republican looking ahead to November, there are many strong conservative leaders in statehouses across the United States and in Congress, whose candidacies I am actively supporting. They have a big job to do to reinvent and revitalize the Republican Party. They can do so by responding to the fears and frustrations of the American people and uniting them behind some common aspirations, while staying constant to the principles that have made our country great.

When it comes to the presidency, I will not vote for Donald Trump. I will not cast a write-in vote. I’ll be voting for Hillary Clinton, with the hope that she can bring Americans together to do the things necessary to strengthen our economy, our environment and our place in the world. To my Republican friends: I know I’m not alone.

For our part we think Paulson’s approach makes sense, although we are not yet quite ready to endorse Hillary Clinton—why not wait for the conventions and also see whether the Johnson-Weld ticket gathers enough momentum to be seriously considered? Still, it appears likely that an endorsement of Hillary is where we will end up. But we will remain Republicans in hopes of adding our own small voice to the task of “reinventing and revitalizing” the Republican Party after November.

That plan, of course, assumes that Trump will suffer the humiliating defeat that he will have fully earned. On the other hand, if Trump should be elected, we would see no basis for remaining in the party and would quickly join Will in the ranks of the unaffiliated. At the same time, we would have to decide what to do about Would we continue with the same name, adopt a new name or simply go out of business? If we should be confronted with that unhappy decision, we would be inclined to seek the advice of our subscribers (but in light of the recent disaster in the UK, we will not call it a referendum.)

7 thoughts on “Blog No. 105. Which Route for a RINO: Will or Paulson?

  • Let’s have some faith in the separation of powers in our government (an eight grade and naturalization requirement). The legislative branch and Supreme Court finally stopped our present imperial president with his executive overrides. If The Donald wins because of Hillary’s incompetence, the Republican Party will control his excesses by not voting for such proposals. Remember when General Haig took over the Presidency when Reagan was shot. “Sorry, General, you are not next in succession. Step aside.” The Constitution works.

  • A vote for Hillary is a vote for Progressive domination of the Supreme Court and our lives. Unlike Republicans, who support the Constitution, Progressives only support their own policies. For that reason alone, I could never support Hillary.

  • Stacy Griffith sums it up for me. I am sure that many oxes will be gored if Donald is elected, and maybe some of them deservedly so. To throw away your vote is a vote for Hillary.

  • Doug: my vote would be that you continue, under any election outcome, to write your blog. If Trump wins, your voice of sanity will be a useful corrective. If Hillary wins, she will benefit from intelligent criticism. To simply walk off the field is not really an option.

  • Doug,
    After 30+ years spent in Washington DC and the outpostings required by my husband’s job with the government, we have both stood resolved on a ‘never Hillary’ platform. Today’s release of the Benghazi report simply confirms what we have known for some time now. I, too, hope saner Republican heads can lead your party forward. As an independent, I see myself socially liberal and fiscally conservative…and often voting Republican in the federal elections. I’m with Paul Ryan and many other Republicans who try to unify and negotiate what is possible in such a polarizing arena as is Washington DC. While Trump makes me cringe, I find I prefer an astute businessman who is a total political imbecile over a return to the corruption, deceit and hypocrisy which makes up Hillary Clinton as an elected official. Did I sugar coat that one too much?

    • No sugar coating there Stacey. I would rather write in for Father Guido Sarduci, before voting Hillary. Both Clinton’s have been a towering disgrace and not worth listening to or believing.
      As far as the erudite Parker continuing with RINO? Only if the Cubs win the World Series.

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