The Never Trump movement failed. God’s Will, as always, reigned supreme and despite every ounce of opposition that the Democrats, media, and Never Trumpers could muster, the nation was saved from the evils of a Hillary administration as well as a Democratic-majority in the Senate. Does this mean Never Trump conservatives should follow the actions of the Democrats and media by whining themselves to sleep at night? No.

This is an opportunity. It’s a time for humility and reflection. Those of us who supported other candidates through the primaries generally fell into one of three categories after Trump’s nomination: late-boarding Trump Train passengers, anti-Hillary lukewarm Trump supporters, and both-options-stink Never Trumpers. The first two categories can carry on with business as usual. The conservative wing of the Never Trump semi-movement needs to fall in line behind the GOP unless they give us reason to do otherwise.

This is the trust-but-verify group. Trump won. The GOP survived to fight for two more years. It’s time to put ice on your bruised egos and walk it off. Many who opposed Trump and Hillary felt that both were far too liberal to achieve certain conservative goals such as returning powers to the states or reducing federal government spending. Those battles are not over, but it would be wrong to oppose everything the GOP does just because your side of the argument lost.

If the GOP repeals Obamacare instead of following through with recent threats to consider amending the reprehensible socialistic monstrosity, then every fiscal conservative should celebrate, even the Never Trump holdouts. If the GOP gets the Trump wall built, every American who opposes illegal immigration should rejoice, even if some of the wall turns out to be fencing instead (better than nothing, right?). If Trump puts pro-life, pro-2nd Amendment judges in as many courts as possible, including the Supreme Court, one of the biggest bits of skepticism from Never Trumpers will melt away and they should be happy as a result. If real conservatives make their way into the administration instead of Establishment types or alt-right political neophytes, there’s a good chance that Trump’s first term could be very successful (though his first official moves aren’t encouraging).

The new role of Never Trump conservatives is to righteously dissent. That means they should wholeheartedly support every conservative initiative even if Trump’s fulfillment of it proves that they were wrong before he was elected. That also means that every leftward lurch should elicit loud dissent. We know that it works on him. His famous “softening” on immigration was quickly reversed once enough conservatives spoke out to set him back on course. There’s a misconception that he doesn’t listen to people. It’s not true. He doesn’t always listen to his advisers, but he definitely listens to the cries of enough people. This is why I’m working on the Federalist Party in the first place. We don’t want to oppose the GOP. We want to oppose liberalism regardless of where it originates. We want to promote checks and balances between the states and Washington DC that can only be achieved by reducing the size and power of the federal government.

To accomplish these goals and set America heading in the right direction, we have to support Trump and the GOP in all of their conservative endeavors. As Never Trump Senator Ben Sasse wrote, “Everyone’s duty is to hope for Trump, work for America.

Four years ago, the prospects of the GOP having control over every branch of federal government was a long-term dream. Today, we’re one Supreme Court justice confirmation away from it becoming a reality. Now is not the time to oppose Trump for the sake of continuing a losing battle. There are opportunities abound for the Republican Party as long as Constitutional conservatives keep their voices loud and focused on issues rather than feelings. When the GOP does well, we need to be their loudest cheerleaders. When their proposals shift too far to the left or they start making unnecessary compromises, we should be the loudest detractors. Dissenting without reasons is what the liberals do. It’s an action that’s below true conservatives even if Trump isn’t their ideal President. Give him a chance to prove us wrong, but be ready to speak out if he doesn’t.

Mr. Spock: This is how history went after McCoy changed it. Here, in the late 1930s. A growing pacifist movement whose influence delayed the United States’ entry into the Second World War. While peace negotiations dragged on, Germany had time to complete its heavy-water experiments.
Captain Kirk: Germany. Fascism. Hitler. They won the Second World War.
Mr. Spock: Because all this lets them develop the A-bomb first. There’s no mistake, Captain. Let me run it again. Edith Keeler. Founder of the peace movement.
Captain Kirk: But she was right. Peace was the way.
Mr. Spock: She was right, but at the wrong time. With the A-bomb, and with their V2 rockets to carry them, Germany captured the world.
Captain Kirk: No.
Mr. Spock: And all this because McCoy came back and somehow kept her from dying in a street accident as she was meant to. We must stop him, Jim.

Star Trek The City on the Edge of Forever 1967

Yesterday old friend Lonely Conservative asked a relevant question concerning Donald Trump as the GOP nominee

Trump himself isn’t giving me any reasons to vote for him. He continues to give me many reasons to stay home and not vote at all, but he hasn’t done a damned thing to earn my vote. Calling Hillary Clinton a crook doesn’t count. I know she’s horrible, but her shortcomings (for lack of a better word to describe how dreadful she is) don’t make Trump any better. As far as I’m concerned, they’re both evil. Trump hitching his wagon to the Republican Party doesn’t change who or what he is.

This type of argument has been a staple of the #nevertrump crowd and her questions about Trump as President are not without merit:

So tell me, why will Donald Trump be a great president? How is he a good man? How is he a good role model? What will he do to get the boot of the federal government off of our necks? What will he do for the free market, or to protect religious liberty? How will he restore our standing in the world? (His cozy relationship with Vladimir Putin doesn’t count, neither does his admiration of the world’s worst dictators.) How is a man whose principles change with the weather going to hold up to the pressures of the presidency?Really, I want to know how you think the orange faced wanna be dictator is going to Make America Great Again?

However while in theory, not staining oneself with a vote for Trump might make one feel better, yesterday the Supreme Court delivered the practical reality of what will happen if Hillary Clinton is elected president vs Donald Trump:

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday blocked President Barack Obama’s plan to spare millions of immigrants in the country illegally from deportation in a split ruling that heartened political foes who had accused him of overstepping his powers.

But the most important words concerning this result come from the very first page of the ruling:

PER CURIAM. The judgment is affirmed by an equally divided Court.

And the folks at Hotair note how much had to go right to reach that point:

A lot had to go right to get to this point. The plaintiffs ended up with a Bush appointee, Judge Andrew Hanen, at the trial level; Hanen issued a preliminary injunction against Obama’s DAPA amnesty, which granted legal status and work permits to an expanded class of illegals. The feds appealed to the Fifth Circuit, and the luck of the draw at that level produced a three-judge panel of one Reagan appointee, one Bush appointee, and one Carter appointee. Result: 2-1 to uphold Hanen’s injunction. Then the plaintiffs had to hope that Anthony Kennedy, who provided the decisive vote elsewhere this morning in upholding the University of Texas’s affirmative action scheme, would resist the urge to tilt left on this one too and form a clear 5-3 majority for O’s order in the name of providing certainty to the millions of illegals currently in DAPA limbo. The Court doesn’t say how the justices voted but it’s a safe bet that Kennedy came through.

And amid all of this, border hawks had to hope that Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans would continue to hold the line and refuse to confirm Merrick Garland, who surely would have done his friend Barack a solid by providing the fifth vote to uphold his order. Everything had to go right for Texas and the other plaintiffs. It did.

Now after this election there will be a new president and that 9th seat on the Supreme Court is going to be filled.  If Hillary Clinton fills that seat Executive Amnesty will be the law of the land.

There were many arguments against nominating Donald Trump, I made some of them, there are also concerns about what a Donald Trump presidency might look like, I wrote a parody song about it but no amount of soul searching, no about of principled declarations and no about of declarations of the unfitness of Donald Trump (valid or not) will change that practical result of either staying home or voting Gary Johnson is to elect Hillary Clinton and guarantee her the ability to appoint the deciding vote on the Supreme Court.

It may be that my friend Karen, and others like Erick Erickson et/al are right, but like Edith Keeler they are right at the wrong time, because the practical result of #nevertrump is the election of Hillary Clinton and if you care about religious freedom, if you care about the 2nd Amendment, if you care about the rule of law to remain #nevertrump you have to be willing to say:

 “I am willing to give the Democrats who are willing to use the power of the government to persecute republicans,  oppressed religious believers and in total denial about Islamic Terror control of the Supreme Court for generations to come in order to keep Donald Trump from being elected.”

I suspect a lot of #nevertrump people seeing this ruling at the Supreme Court will decide this is a bridge too far for them.

Every person much make that decision on their own and I’m not going to question Karen or anyone else who decides they just can’t vote Trump, but if one makes that decision it has to be made with eyes wide open.

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Yesterday I had a long debate with the #nevertrump hashtag over the effectiveness of Trump’s attacks concerning Hillary and Bill’s past. It was occasioned by Jake Tapper’s tweets concerning Vince Foster noting that there is

I argued that while I disagreed with the tactical move of invoking Foster (particularly when there are so many genuine Clinton outrages out there) strategically I understand what is being done.

The twitter conversation that followed convinces me that people don’t understand the change in the culture that has enabled Trump.

The best way to explain it is, believe it or not. The VA Disney business.

for the last few years we have been hearing horror story after horror story on the VA from wait times to the treatment of vets in the care of the VA. These stories include seeming lack of consequences for those responsible for these disasters.

Yet it didn’t make a difference, Obama administration did not feel the need to make changes and the media did not see the need to hold them accountable.

However once the conversation turned from the actual problems in the VA to a minor remark over Disney lines and here comes the outrage and the apology.

Jake also covered this story

What does that tell you? That the actual reality of a situation is less important that the cultural sound bite.

And that more than anything else explains the electoral success of Donald Trump.

The GOP 2016 field was incredible, you had senators like Ted Cruz and Rand Paul and Governors like Scott Walker and Rick Perry and many more who not only had accomplishments but had fought for conservatism and conservative principles.

But Donald Trump recognized however that in the current culture, a culture created and encouraged by the left, that the minutia is not what people are interested in, and has packaged his two big general principles (anti-illegal immigration, anti-islamic terror) in a way that is both entertaining and projects strength, while attacking his opponents in ways that do the same.

Furthermore consider this tweet from #Nevertrump in the midst of a debate on Trump’s tactics

That argument unfortunately flies in the face of math, after all if I was a person looking to maximize my vote total I might be more interested in getting the votes of the 3.19 million people who follow a WWE star like say Shawn Michaels than the 478 thousand who follow Jake Tapper.

After all there is a reason why Mattel makes and Amazon sells a Sean Michaels Action figure but does not offer a Jake Tapper one.

Put simply there are more votes in the tactics Trump is using that might draw the occasional debunking by Jake, then it restraint that never occasions such a critique.

Donald Trump and his campaign figured this out very early, never Trump has not

This isn’t a pro-trump position, or an anti-Jake Tapper position. It it a pro-math position.

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Henry Drummond: Sometimes I think there’s a man who sits behind a counter and says, “All right, you can have a telephone but you lose privacy and the charm of distance, Madam, you may vote but at a price. You lose the right to retreat behind the powder puff or your petticoat. Mister, you may conquer the air but the birds will lose their wonder and the clouds will smell of gasoline.”

inherit the wind 1960

One of my father’s favorite sayings that he drilled into me was a very simple concept:

EVERYTHING COSTS SOMETHING

This was something he did his best to teach us, to make sure that before we leaped into any personal, financial or social decision, we made sure we understood what it means.

Nothing illustrates this better than the angst in some GOP/Conservatives circles.

As everyone knows I was a Ted Cruz guy and after seeing the outright lies told by the Trump campaign I still haven’t made up my mind on Trump in the general.

But keeping my father’s advice in mind I conclude that both the nomination and support of Donald Trump in the general election and the Opposition to Donald Trump and support for a 3rd party candidate  in a general election is not without cost.

It is very possible (I suspect a lot more possible than a lot of the media or pundits realize) that Donald Trump can beat Hillary Clinton, and the latest polling backs up that theory, But that omes at a price.

The willingness to risk that once elected we may discover his core convictions are completely opposite of what we thing.

the willingness to risk that his stated positions on border, guns, Islamist terror, common core and abortion are not as flexible as his actions during the campaign have indicated

the willingness to risk that his abrasive style when used against nations and countries that have a face culture does not provoke international disaster

The willingness to risk an inexperienced man will not screw up on a national or international level.

The further erosion of the dignity of the office of the presidency.

On the other side of the coin there is a price for opposing Trump:

White it is very possible that if conservatives choose to stay home or support a 3rd party candidate, they can prevent Donald Trump from winning the White House,  but that comes with a price as well.

It means guaranteeing the election of Hillary Clinton whose antipathy to the truth is legendary.

It means continuing the destructive Obama Clinton foreign policy, destructive domestic policy,

It means  four to eight years of ultra liberal judges at every level of the courts up to and including the supreme court. 

It means that not only will no  members of the current administration ever pay a destructive and illegal attacks on conservatives but that the current attacks on culture on religion and culture will continue.  

Or to sum it up as simple as can be:

 Will the fundamental transformation of how we choose presidents by rewarding Mr. Trump’s methods by putting him and his cronies in the White House for 4-8 years and the cultural cost to the nation’s soul thereof be so great that it exceeds the cost to the nation and its soul of rewarding Hillary not only for her corruption and incompetence but for her enabling of the corruption and incompetene of the Obama administration, by putting her and her crownies in the White House for 4-8 years?

That’s frankly what the election omes down to and it’s the question each conservative will have to answer for themselves.

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If you are spending any time on twitter you will find that the vitriol between conservatives/republicans on the “Never Trump” side and supports of the victorious Donald has if possible gotten worse with an almost religious fervor.

In one sense I understand the problem, it comes down to this:

Strong fiscal/social conservatives like myself had literally our dream conservative in Ted Cruz. Young, God fearing, intelligent, a person who had fought for us. He would also have also been the first Hispanic American to lead a national ticket putting our liberal friends on the defensive. He got to the very brink of the nomination outlasting more than a dozen other strong accomplished competitors…

…and yet in the end the votes choose a reality show star with very um…flexible positions and beliefs who is actually OLDER than Hillary Clinton who was complementing both her and Obama as late as 2008.

Meanwhile on the other side you have people, perhaps not as ideological as myself, who saw the GOP nominate equivocating losers over and over again while watching the gop submit again and again to Obama in congress. Then they see a man come up, challenge both the GOP & the MSM very publicly on both Radical Islam and Illegal Immigration, not back down despite constant attacks, go forward and rally GOP votes with a promise that he will make America Great again. They back them man, watch him win state after state in a crowded field…

…and then when he finally reaches the point when the nomination is his thanks to overwhelming support of the votes, they see a large amount of both the GOP establishment and conservatives that they supported in the past, decide they would rather see Hillary in the White House than support the man they voted for.

Let me remind everyone of a few things.

1. Christianity is a religion, CONSERVATISM IS NOT:

If you start worshiping Conservatism or consider Christianity as good because it helps lead to conservatism, you’re worshipping a different God than me. Let our secular liberal friends treat their politics as a religion I’m not doing it.

2. Elections are all about marketing:

The voter is the customer base and the candidate is the product, if your favored candidate failed to sell themself to the voters. Rather than blaming the voters who preferred someone else you had better start getting to work to either
A: Find a candidate you support who can OR
B: Help your previous candidate improve their pitch for the next time around.

3. Voting is a proactive action:

In order to win an election you have to get people to proactively go out and vote for you. This means that you need to convince them to turn out rather than stay home. If you treat the voter as someone who owes you support rather than a customer you have to make the sale to, you will lose and deserve to do so.

3a. You don’t win voters over with threats or smug declarations:

If you want your candidate to win an election, particularly after a bruising primary, you need to give those voters who had gone elsewhere a reason to vote for you. You need to assure them that you have their best interests at heart. As a general rule this can not be accomplished by threats and Insults.

Both sides need to decide what their goals are and act accordingly:

Doctrine conservatives had better remember that this is not going to be the last election or political fight in America and this election cycle has unfortunately proven we are not even the majority of GOP primary voters. So if your goal is to advance our agenda and beliefs for the good of America on everything from religious freedom, to guns to Obamacare to radical Islam we are going to need allies. I suspect none of those allies are going to be found in the ranks of Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders voters.

Donald Trump supporters while legitimately celebrating their victory had better remember that while the top 4 GOP candidates who managed to win states have outpolled the Democrats (25 Million to 21.7 Million) as of right now Donald Trump has received 1.8 Million LESS votes than Hillary Clinton  (10.6 Million to 12.4 Million). So while it might be fun to tweak a Paul Ryan, a Mitt Romney or a Lindsey Graham, if your goal is to elect Donald Trump president, you are going to need most of those Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and John Kasich voters to turn up and vote for your man.

Everyone needs to take a deep breath and do it soon.

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