Skip to main content

An intriguing possibility: a brokered convention, and a dark horse for the GOP

Interesting post-South Carolina article by John Hudek of the Brookings Institution in which he goes a step further than I have in recent posts about the Republican race. Hudek comes right out and says  that however well Donald Trump may do in the primaries, as long as Rubio and Cruz- and yes, Kasich- are waging serious campaigns he may not be able to clinch a majority of the delegates before the convention meets in July in Cleveland. Getting a third of the vote in primary after primary may not be enough.

In which case we'll have an old-fashioned, brokered convention- and in all probability a compromise nominee, a "dark horse-" somebody who didn't even run this year but whom everybody (but the hard-core Trumpbots) will be able to agree on.

Seems to me that Hudek's logic is unassailable. If the GOP nominates Trump, defeat is certain. If it ignores Trump and nominates, say, John Thune or Kelly Ayotte or Nikki Haley or Mitt Romney, even if the Trump people freak out, the party still has a chance,

This has the makings of one of the most fascinating election years in our history. It could also be one of the most disastrous.  It could be the year that American Exceptionalism is disproven once and for all and we prove that the American voter has no unique wisdom after all, and can screw up as badly as any European. Or it could be the year that, once again, our native genius pulls triumph from the jaws of disaster.

The closest parallel I can think of is 1880, when a bitterly divided Republican party that couldn't decide between former President Ulysses S. Grant,  James G. Blaine and Ohio Gov. John Sherman instead chose Ohio's James Garfield, an able, humble, respected but somewhat obscure congressman who spent the entire night before the decisive ballot begging influential Republicans not to pick him- but who won in November.

Although he was assassinated early in his term, he was also one of the ablest presidents we've ever had, and if he'd lived might well be remembered as one of the greatest.


Popular posts from this blog

Jan Chamberlain's rhetoric is too strong. But the stand she has taken is right.

I do not share the religion of Jan Chamberlain. I don't even pray to the same god. But I can't help but admire the integrity of the woman who quit the Mormon Tabernacle Choir rather than sing at Donald Trump's inauguration.

Ms. Chamberlain, like me, voted for Evan McMullin in November. Like me, she holds no brief for Hillary Clinton or her agenda. But she cannot, as she put it, "throw roses at Hitler."

As I've said before, comparing Trump to Hitler strikes me as harsh. I believe that Trump is a power-hungry narcissist who exhibits disturbing signs of psychopathy, like Hitler. Like Hitler, he has stigmatized  defenseless minorities- Muslims and undocumented aliens, rather than Jews- and made them scapegoats for the nation's troubles. Like Hitler, he has ridden a wave of irrational hatred and emotion to power. Like Hitler's, his agenda foreshadows disaster for the nation he has been chosen to lead.

But he's not going to set up death camps for Musli…

Neither Evan McMullin nor his movement are going away

Evan McMullin has devoted most of his post-college life- even to the point of foregoing marriage and a family- to fighting ISIS and al Qaeda and our nation's deadliest enemies as a clandestine officer for the CIA. He has done so at the risk of his life.

He has seen authoritarianism in action close-up. One of his main jobs overseas was to locate and facilitate the elimination of jihadist warlords. Evan McMullin knows authoritarians.

And when he looks at Donald Trump, what he sees is an authoritarian like the ones he fought overseas. He knows Donald Trump. After leaving the CIA he served as policy director for the Republican majority in the United States House of Representatives. He tells about his first encounter with The Donald in that role in this opinion piece he wrote for today's New York Times.

In fact, when Mitt Romney and Tom Coburn and all the others who were recruited to run as a conservative third-party candidate against Trump and Hillary Clinton backed out,  McMulli…

Huzzah! Once again, 45 does something majorly right!

First. he appointed Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, and now 45 has- at long last- initiated a sensible space policy, with a plan to promote a "rapid and affordable" return to the moon carried out by private enterprise by 2020.  Afterward, it will be onward to Mars and beyond.

This is a great idea for three reasons. First, private enterprise is the future of space exploration, and as far as I know we will be the first spacefaring nation to put most of its eggs in that basket. Second, it's nice to have eggs! Since the Obama administration canceled the Constellation program to develop the Ares booster and the Orion crew vehicle (though it subsequently reinstated the Orion part of the program), the United States has been twiddling its thumbs while China has taken great leaps toward the moon and other countries- including Russia, India, and Japan- have to various degrees intensified their own space programs. It would be both tragic and foolhardy for the nation which first…