Future footnotes to the 2020 election will include discussions of a small but vocal cohort of former Republicans who turned against the President. Known collectively as anti-Trumpers or never-Trumpers, it includes people who used to be rank and file Republicans, folks who used to be part of a Republican administration, and those who feel marginalized, left out, and uninvolved.
The latter group is essentially in a hissy fit because they are no longer relevant and mad that Trump managed to win the nomination and election without their help or support.
This last group is the most visible part of the anti-Trump movement. They seek publicity and influence, so pretend to have it. Being anti-Trump, the media sycophants are often happy to give them attention.
Among the more confounding part of the whole Trump v. anti-Trump dance is that some of them are legitimately people who are conservative, usually voted GOP, but hate Trump so voted for the most extreme leftist candidates for President and Vice President in history. I find that inexplicable.
In terms of overall numbers, President Trump has enjoyed a historic level of support from party regulars. The average, walking around, garden variety Republican supports him strongly.
He got about 95% Republican support in the election. When you hear from those who are self-appointed watchdogs or keepers of the Republican brand, remember they are the outliers. Not me, you, or your golden doodle.
More to the point, if they were influential or important to the national Republican Party they wouldn’t be sitting on the sidelines. They wouldn’t be firing occasional tweets, blog posts, interviews, or creating ads that purport to tell the truth about Trump while the rest of us presumably wallow in our ignorant filth.
Nonsense. Anyone who tells you they are uniquely insightful or knowledgeable about Trump’s failings is egotistical, bigoted, lying, or all three.
There are some former Trump supporters, or administration staffers, who are venomously anti-Trump. Dems/Mainstream Media/Socialists/Other Anti-Trumpers celebrate every new entry into this small club – “SGFTS,” that is, Sour Grapes, Former Trump Supporters – and assert that is means something. Manifestly, it does not.
There are thousands of people who have had a role in the Trump campaign or administration, or just supported him, who still love the guy. They recognize he did an extraordinary job and that by any objective measure was a success. It is not surprising in the least that there are some folks who used to sing the praises of Trump but, now that they have moved on, criticize him. That is what lots of people do when they lose their jobs, get cut from the team, or turned down by the cute cheerleader they had hoped would go out with them. If you fail, you claim you didn’t want it in the first place. How many people do you know who have gotten fired and say “The company was right, I was doing a shitty job?” If you are a former Trump supporter, and want to make headlines, the single easiest way to do it is to claim you have had a change of heart and now believe he is evil personified. That may get you on TV. Remaining loyal and supporting him will not.
We have little reason to give credibility to anti-Trumpers. They are irritated because they are now irrelevant; they are frustrated because they had said Trump couldn’t get the nomination, win, or govern, and were wrong on each point; or perhaps they jumped eagerly on each scandal of the day that came along, which they assured us would bring Trump’s downfall, and were never right. When you are wrong as often as leading Anti-Trumpers, you must get tired of losing.
As the GOP looks to find a way forward, it will be fascinating to see how the most-prominent anti-Trumpers try to reclaim a piece of the Republican leadership. Many of us who have supported Trump through thick and thin, frankly, couldn’t care less what anti-Trumpers do. We’ll always take your vote, I suppose, but that doesn’t mean much. If you walked into the DNC and said “I hate Biden, but want to give you money anyway,” they’d happily take your check.
That said, I don’t envision many Trump supporters welcoming anti-Trumpers to leadership positions of any kind post-2020. In addition, I struggle to think of people about whose political views I care less. Should we suddenly begin caring what these people, who have never been right, have to say?
If you have such little enthusiasm for conservatism, if it ranks so low on your list of priorities, that you can support Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, why should you have any role in what American conservatives do in the future? t is axiomatic that you don’t always get the candidate you prefer. I was a Rubio supporter in 2016. I caucused for him here in Nevada. Then, when Trump got the nomination, I shifted my support to Trump quicker than Bill Clinton lowers his zipper at a reception for new White House interns.
In America we always vote for candidate we believe is the better choice, but not without flaws. In 2008, the GOP nominated someone John McCain. Many Republicans loved John McCain, but I was not among them. I think he was a phony conservative who turned his back on both the voters who supported him and the issues that motivated them. Notably, the media and today's anti-Trumpers loved him. They always love Republicans who lose the presidential contest and go on to turn their backs on the Party.
But, again, the choice was McCain or Obama. As much as I didn’t care for McCain, he was head and shoulders preferable to Obama. Just as Trump was a much better choice than the Hildebeast or Biden. It isn’t that complicated.
It is possible to claim you are a conservative but voted for Biden. It is also possible to claim you are loyal to your wife but are having sex with the babysitter. It is possible, just not true or credible.
On our next visit, we’ll chat a bit more about anti-Trumpers, what the road ahead might look like for the GOP, and the decisions we need to make. In the meantime, keep your fingers crossed for a last-minute miracle that may keep Trump in the White House. It will be the biggest comeback since Lazarus.