President Donald Trump’s so-called “Republican” challengers in the 2020 GOP presidential primaries penned an op-ed for one of America’s most left-wing papers this week blasting the Republican Party for not allowing them to lose to the president fair and square.
Written by former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld and former reportedly corrupt Illinois Rep. Joe Walsh, the op-in in The Washington Post specifically took issues with some GOP-led states cancelling their primary elections.
“If a party stands for nothing but reelection, it indeed stands for nothing.” @MarkSanford, @WalshFreedom and I offer a few thoughts on the #GOP and @realDonaldTrump:https://t.co/mMEjLjRPtd
— Gov. Bill Weld (@GovBillWeld) September 14, 2019
“Republicans have long held primaries and caucuses to bring out the best our party has to offer,” the piece reads. “Our political system assumes an incumbent president will make his case in front of voters to prove that he or she deserves to be nominated for a second term.”
“But now, the Republican parties of four states — Arizona, Kansas, Nevada and South Carolina — have canceled their nominating contests. By this design, the incumbent will be crowned winner of these states’ primary delegates. There is little confusion about who has been pushing for this outcome.”
In the actual piece, the latter sentence — the one shown above in italics — links to a report published earlier this week by Boston public radio station WBUR. The report notes that the president has indeed been influencing events behind the scenes.
“Trump aides are looking to prevent a repeat of the convention discord that highlighted the electoral weaknesses of Presidents George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter in their failed reelection campaigns,” it reads, referring to two past incumbent reelection campaigns that failed because of primary challenges.
“The effort is an acknowledgment that Trump hasn’t completely cemented his grip on the GOP and might not coast to the nomination without some opposition. To that end, the campaign has worked over the past year to scuttle any attempts at a Trump challenge by party dissidents, mindful that a serious primary opponent could weaken Trump heading into the general election.”
South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas are canceling their Republican primaries and caucuses, which spells very bad news for Republican Trump challengers, who already faced a near-impossible road anyway.https://t.co/70g71Awv6l
— ?? Jack Ralph ?? (@NevadaJack2) September 7, 2019
However, the report that Sanford, Weld, and Walsh linked to also seems to contains a glaring piece of evidence of why their complaints are petulant and petty.
“Canceling primaries, caucuses and other voting is not unusual for the party of the White House incumbent seeking a second term,” the report reads.
And then there’s also this: “Primary challenges to incumbents are rarely successful, and Trump’s poll numbers among Republican voters have proved resilient.”
Very resilient, to the point that his spread in polling averages tracked by RealClearPolitics have ranged from 70 to 90 percent, with the latest New Hampshire primary poll showing him at 88 percent and Weld and Walsh and 3 and 1 percent, respectively.
Boston Herald poll finds Trump leading Bill Weld 88-3 in the New Hampshire primary. Joe Walsh is at 1 percent, Mark Sanford not tested. https://t.co/VefH85EYQQ
— Jim Antle (@jimantle) September 11, 2019
Dovetailing back to the long-shot candidates’ pouty op-ed, it continues by suggesting that the president and his supporters among the Republican Party are “cowards.”
“If a party stands for nothing but reelection, it indeed stands for nothing,” it reads. “Our next nominee must compete in the marketplace of ideas, values, and leadership. Each of us believes we can best lead the party. So does the incumbent. Let us each take our case to the public.”
“The saying ‘may the best man win’ is a quintessential value that the Republican Party must honor if we are to command the respect of the American people. Cowards run from fights. Warriors stand and fight for what they believe. The United States respects warriors. Only the weak fear competition.”
The trio then compared the Republican Party to the authoritarian regimes of Russia and China.
“Do Republicans really want to be the party with a nominating process that more resembles Russia or China than our American tradition?” they wrote.
It’s unclear why they’d direct such a hyperbolic accusation toward their own party, especially given the Democrat Party’s own history of cancelling primaries and caucuses.
During former President Barack Hussein Obama’s re-election bid in 2012, the Democrat Party canceled primaries and elections in Connecticut, Delaware, New York, and Virginia.
It’s unclear whether Sanford, Weld, and Walsh said anything about that at the time. In fact, searches on Google for news stories about the cancellations brought up literally nothing.
Meanwhile, much like Sanford, Weld and Walsh, the left-wing mainstream media have been running endless reports about the Republican Party’s decision to cancel some of its primaries and caucuses.
In concluding their op-ed, the trio appeared to suggest that they plan to file legal challenges against Arizona, Kansas, Nevada and South Carolina.
“[T]he litigation costs these four state parties will likely be forced to take on in defending legal challenges to the cancellations will almost certainly exceed the cost of holding the primaries and caucuses themselves,” they wrote.
“In the United States, citizens choose their leaders. The primary nomination process is the only opportunity for Republicans to have a voice in deciding who will represent our party. Let those voices be heard.”
Given the clear-cut poll results, however, it’s not clear if Sanford, Weld, and Walsh are indeed listening to the Republican base. Conversely, given the type of people who’ve chosen to share their op-ed, it seems like the only people listening to them are left-wingers.
Mark Sanford, Joe Walsh, Bill Weld op-ed: Canceling GOP primaries is a critical mistake – The Washington Post https://t.co/0YkxXrzIZs
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) September 14, 2019
A joint op-ed from Trump’s GOP primary challengers Mark Sanford, Joe Walsh and Bill Weld… https://t.co/lUJK9vLF8V
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) September 14, 2019
— Jennifer Rubin (@JRubinBlogger) September 14, 2019
Trump’s three GOP challengers criticize party for canceling primaries https://t.co/WggCVwLZnt pic.twitter.com/XJXp40q5OO
— The Resistance Movement (@ResistMoveTRM) September 14, 2019
FYI, having Rachel Maddow and members of the “Resistance” movement on your team isn’t a good look.
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