I kept some receipts from the 2016 Presidential Election that I'd like to turn in:
During the 2016 Republican Primaries, the Republican Establishment tried to trick Donald Trump and wanted everyone to take a Loyalty Pledge to the eventual nominee, like a bunch of girls in a sorority.
We all remember what happened. Surprise, surprise, Trump won the nomination and then the Republican establishment reneged on their own rules. From Beacon of Speech in 2016: "Republicans have shown their (true colors) and broken into 3 camps:
The Powells: Colin Powell and a handful of other Republicans have crossed the aisle to endorse Hillary Clinton. I don’t agree with the Powells, but I respect their thought process.
The Christies: Some Republicans decided that no matter who was nominated, they were going to support the candidate, whether it be Jeb Bush, Donald Trump, or Satan. I don’t agree with the Christies, but I respect their team spirit.
The Cowards (or The Kasichs): John Kasich and others decided they can’t support Trump. They can’t cross the aisle. And, for some mysterious reason, they can’t go third party. There are other options: Gary Johnson, Jill Stein, and Evan McMullin, just off the top of my head. So when John Kasich announced he was going to write in John McCain, all remaining respect for Kasich was gone.
Where's John Kasich now? He's out of politics and was an analyst for CNN, now NBC. He also writes op-eds. Even though he's not running for any office, you can still donate to his vision for America. Seriously, his donation website is still up and running:
What does that have to do with today?
Yesterday, Mike Pence dropped out of the 2024 Presidential Primary.
On paper, Mike Pence was the most principled CONSERVATIVE on the ballot.
That designation earned him exactly ONE endorsement in 2023:
"T. Kenneth Cribb Jr., Edwin J. Feulner Jr., Donald Paul Hodel and Helene Von Damm argue in their letter that Pence 'is the candidate best equipped to uphold the Reagan legacy and lead our party and our nation forward.'" - The Hill
Who are Cribb, Feulner, Hodel, and Von Damm? Principled Conservatives that served under Reagan.
Returning to 2016, remember all the Republicans who went on the record and said they weren't voting? Here's the list with their responses followed by my response;
Kelly Ayotte: “Governor Pence.” Me: Isn’t a vote for Pence a vote for Trump?
Frank LoBiondo: “Governor Pence.” Me: -
Rob Portman: “Governor Pence.” Me: -
Mark Kirk: “General Petraeus.” Me: What?
Mitt Romney: Not Trump or Clinton. ‘None of your business.’ Me: Okay, I paraphrased that one.
Jeb Bush: Not Trump or Clinton. “I will support principled conservatives at the state and federal levels.”
Ron Paul: Not Trump or Clinton or Johnson or Stein. “We will update this page if Ron Paul makes an endorsement.”
Rick Snyder: Not Trump or Clinton. “I’ve got important things I want to work on in Michigan.” Me: Too busy to vote?
Larry Hogan: Not Trump or Clinton. “I’m not going to endorse anyone and would rather focus on things here in Maryland.” Me: -
Where's Pence's supporters from 2016?
Kelly Ayotte? Running for Governor of New Hampshire in 2024.
Frank LoBiondo? Retired.
Rob Portman? Retired.
Just a reminder, Republican Blue-Bloods hated Donald Trump because he was, and still is, a Populist. He has no core-values except for 'sticking it' to Liberals.
Who did I vote for in 2016? I voted for Libertarian Gary Johnson. I was on the record then, I am on the record now.
So with Mike Pence officially out of the race, what were his last words to his supporters? Resist the "Siren Song of Populism."
Republicans: If Trump is your nominee in 2024, you either vote for him or you go on the record as to who you are voting for. If you're a heroin addict living in a crack house, your vote is your vote, that's none of my business.
If your job is politician in a leadership position in your political party, you don't get to be a coward, like John Kasich, and write in one of your friends. If John Kasich really thought Donald Trump was a menace, he would have implored you to vote for Clinton or Johnson. John Kasich put the preservation of his party over his country.
Why is this important 8 years later? John Kasich is framing himself as a hero. According to The Hill "(Kasich's) 'proud' of decisions he’s made to publicly disavow former President Trump in the past and called on 2024 GOP presidential candidates to have the courage to do the same."
You know what? Screw John Kasich. Fred Hunt says vote third party in 2024 and help dismantle the political rigmarole that fuels both the Republican and Democrat apparatuses.