What looked like a healthy anti-Trump movement when it started, the #NeverTrump hashtag has now been exposed as a politically bone-headed idea.
I have long been an admirer of the prophet Peter Wolfgang, and I have to agree with him again: However much you dislike the idea of Trump being President, declaring in the winter of our discontent that you will always and everywhere be #NeverTrump is a bad idea.
Like Peter, I can’t imagine myself ever voting for Donald Trump. I would rather join John Boehner and vote for Paul Ryan or go completely anti-establishment and join the masses who vote for Mickey Mouse.
But there are three groups who benefit from an early declaration of #NeverTrump.
The first is Hillary Clinton and her supporters. She wants you not just to hate Trump, but to hate him so much you allow her to become President. And as terrible as Donald Trump is, the case could be made that a woman who has devoted her life to boosting abortion clinics’ profits at the expense of moms and children is worse.
The second group to benefit are the angry anti-Democracy anti-Trump supporters who would rather shut him down than try to beat him fair and square. I love how Marco Rubio in his concession speech starts by thanking Trump and when his supporters object, reminds them “we live in a Republic.” Later, when he is heckled by a Trump supporter he assures the man that he won’t get beat up at a Rubio rally. I, for one, would rather see Trump win than see Democracy fail.
And of course the third group the #NeverTrump hashtag benefits is Donald Trump and his supporters. And that makes it a bad idea. It benefits Trump by confirming his voters’ worst suspicions that there is no fair shake in American politics; that the donor class wants things their way or no way at all.
Note that the smartest anti-Trump voices are not saying #NeverTrump. Robert P. George, for instance, co-authored an appeal signed by several Catholic luminaries declaring Trump “manifestly unfit to be president of the United States.” But according to a Facebook comment by Austin Ruse, “on radio Robby said the question of the general will come later and would depend on who the candidates are and if there is a ‘credible third party candidate.’” And Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse’s eloquent cri de coeur did not say “#NeverTrump.” What Sasse wrote was “Given what we know about him today, here’s where I’m at: If Donald Trump becomes the Republican nominee, my expectation is that I will look for some third candidate …” (emphasis added).
For pro-life voters our play is clear: Do whatever is necessary to help restore the right to life in America. Without the right to life, everything falls. That is why everything is falling today. In a land where you can take the lives of those you find inconvenient, there is no basis for any other human right.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying “Vote for Trump.” If Trump can convince us that he will protect human life, then let him do so — but he is going to have to earn pro-life votes the hard way. If he does nothing more to earn our vote, it would be better to write in your favorite Hobbit than to vote for Trump.
Whoever becomes president it is our job to deliver the consistent message that we will always be for life. Not #NeverTrump — but #NeverRoe, #NeverDeath, #AlwaysLife.