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.