In what may be an unprecedented move, a former chairman of the Republican National Committee is hoping for a “miracle in Cleveland” that will produce a result other than presumptive nominee Donald Trump.
Marc Racicot, who in addition to once heading up the RNC is also the former governor of Montana, declared in a Washington Post op-ed that he will not support Trump as the GOP nominee and said he’s praying the party delivers a different result at its national convention in Cleveland later this month.
Marking the nation’s 240th birthday, Racicot points to “the father of the Republican Party,” Abraham Lincoln, saying Lincoln was not always perceived as a profound leader before noting that he wasn’t the party’s first choice at the 1860 convention and would be elected president with only 40 percent of the popular vote.
How is it that, in the darkest of times, the nation invested its confidence in a man who had failed in business and had lost almost as many elections as he had won, a man who had no significant administrative experience, a man who represented a new political party that had never seen the inside of the White House, and a man who was not even the first choice of his party on either of the first two ballots of that party’s political convention in 1860?
Racicot then appeals to the character of a potential nominee.
There appears but one conclusion. The collective whole of our citizenry, like a jury, has always had the capacity, if the evidence was before them, to discern those best qualified by virtue of their character and capacity, to lead us through perilous times.
As responsible, though admittedly not perfect, citizens, we are obliged, before automatic commitments to political parties, ideologies or candidates, to give consideration to those timeless and eternal qualities of genuine leadership that transcend ever-changing political charters, programs and affiliations. Rarely stopping to inventory them, we all know them when we see them. It is inescapable that every decision made by every leader reflects the character of the man or woman making the decision. Character is the lens through which a leader perceives the path to be followed.
Acknowledging that 13 million people voted for Trump as the nominee, Racicot said he did not want to “diminish the message that each of those votes carries with them.”
“But after long and careful consideration, I cannot endorse or support their decision to express their frustration, anger and disappointment by selecting Trump as the Republican nominee for president,” he said. “Trump has demonstrated neither the aforementioned qualities of principled leadership, nor offered any substantive or serious conservative policy proposals consistent with historical Republican Party platform positions.”
“As a result, I cannot endorse or support Trump for president. And I offer my prayer for a second miracle in Cleveland.”
With Trump facing such spirited opposition from within his own party, the convention later this month has the potential to be every bit as contention as was seen in 1860.
Maybe Racicot needs to listen to Sarah Palin’s latest speech for a different perspective.
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