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A Republican Non-Recrimination Pact

This is probably not even within the realm of the practical, but let’s toss it out there and see if it floats — right?

From this morning’s POLITICO:

Establishment stalwarts in their 60s, meanwhile, are rolling their eyes at the angst of these rarefied intellectual purists, saying there’s nothing wrong with tinkering with your ideology for the sake of forming a coalition to hold power, no matter how motley. To them, Trump is a black swan event, and the way forward, though significantly more difficult after the chaos he’s wrought, isn’t all that fraught: Toss some ideological dead weight overboard to bring in more voters, and run a candidate like Trump’s VP pick Mike Pence in 2020.

That is an appalling prospect to the younger conservatives, some of whom have begun to use the word “collaborator” to describe the Republicans who publicly signed on with Trump as he steamrolled toward the nomination. “I know lots of high-value donors who have no desire to have any collaborators at the top of the ticket in 2020,” Glover said of Pence. “That’s a commonly held opinion.” “Pence has disgraced himself in this election,” says reformicon archpriest Pete Wehner, a senior fellow at the conservative Ethics and Public Policy Center and a former senior adviser to the younger Bush. “He has been making arguments that he can’t possibly believe, on behalf of a man he can’t possibly believe in.” To them, Pence made a pact with the devil, and says Wehner, “There should be consequences for that.”

I will freely admit that I am no fan of Donald Trump.  What grates at me most of all is the fact that he has mainstreamed ethnic and racial nationalism to the point that it is a definable feature in both the Democratic and Republican Parties.  Perhaps I come from an era where non-racialism was the goal… but the devolution into anti-racism and pro-racism camps is shocking, demoralizing, and against everything I believe as a Catholic.  So if you want to put the finger on my opposition to Trump — there it is.

Full stop.

Let’s weigh the scales for a moment though.  Not every Trump supporter buys in to the “alt-right” messaging — in fact, far from it.  Personally, I bristle at the idea that the conversation on foreign policy and trade is being defined as a grand melee between globalism and nationalism (Americans are neither, we are federalists), but the economic concerns over Schumpeter-style “creative destruction” shipping jobs overseas?  That’s a serious one.

The tidal wave of an automated workforce is equally concerning in an era of globalization, as 17-40% of the jobs people do right now are going to be obsolete in 5-10 years, and no one — not Washington, not Richmond, not your local courthouse — is worried about workforce development or microfinance as solutions.

But this is all a digression from the main points we want to make here:

(1)  The progressives and liberals have a very different idea of America than we do.

(2)  The conservatives and the populists are going to have to find a way to forge a “grand coalition” that matches populist concerns with conservative ideas — or vice versa.

I don’t know what this grand coalition will look like, nor do I know who will lead it.  But the one thing I think we can all agree upon is this — a Republican “civil war” might be tempting, even cathartic… but it will deliver the nation into Democratic hands for the next 4-6 years.

Now obviously this doesn’t have to be the case.  Democrats after their 2004 shellacking were able to reinvent themselves in just 18 short months to come over the wall in 2006.  One side — typically the well funded one — can reinvent the party in the event of a loss…

…but that doesn’t rebuild the friendships lost after a particularly harsh battle where one side considers the other as traitors, the other as collaborators.

So here’s the idea (and RPV, listen up — this is good petition fodder).  Everyone reading this needs to subscribe to this basic pledge or some variant that doesn’t sell our or morph into a “loyalty oath”:

I, _______________ do hereby pledge that I will neither do harm to nor blame my fellow Republicans for their position regarding the Trump presidential candidacy of 2016, and will work to advance the Republican cause in 2017.

Call it the Non-Recrimination Pledge.

Now obviously, folks are clutching their pearls over criticism of fellow Republicans in an election year.  Pshaw, I say… the same folks whining over a critique of Trump certainly have no compulsions about throwing rocks at Comstock, Taylor, or Goodlatte (or Ryan).

Repeat after me: Criticism is not disloyalty — stamp it in bronze plates and hand them out at the RPV Advance to everyone who comes through the door… we’re the party of free ideas, free speech, and a free society: own it.

To wit?  Rep. Dave Brat certainly has no problems recriminating against Speaker Paul Ryan, according to the New York Times:

“There’s a huge chunk of people who want to see a fight taken to D.C.,” said Representative Dave Brat, Republican of Virginia and a member of the House Freedom Caucus, which has pressed Mr. Ryan on several issues since he became speaker last year. Mr. Brat said many conservatives remained perplexed as to why Mr. Ryan and Republican leaders would choose to criticize Mr. Trump rather than focus their energy on Mrs. Clinton.

“Leadership comes and smacks our guy?” Mr. Brat said. “That’s where you’re going to put down a marker? Really? And the American people are just scratching their head saying, ‘Really? That’s rich.’”

Mr. Brat’s advice for Mr. Ryan: “He’d better pivot. He’d better pivot hard.”

That’s one hell of a thing to say about a Speaker Ryan who just dropped $800,000 in a VA-05 effort that claims to be up 11 points.

But see what I mean?  If Brat wants the civil war, right on — pistols up and let’s do this.  Of course, were I the good congressman, I might be more worried about pivoting on Brat’s pro-abortion yet somehow still pro-Constitution stance and how that synchronizes with the values of good Christian folk back home… but I digress yet again.

Recrimination on Trump?  Either it’s going to redefine the GOP or not… but let’s not identify the populist surge by its worst elements anymore than we should identify the “establishment” conservatives by their worst.

Let’s give this one a mulligan — and give each other a break.

UPDATE: Apparently Ben Shapiro and I are on the same brainwave — or at least a similar one.  From the pages of National Review:

The only way to rebuild a Republican party based on conservative principle is to acknowledge the good motives of those who disagree about Trump. We all want to stop Hillary Clinton and her vile agenda. We all want to reverse decades of Democratic policy on immigration and government growth, on social leftism and leftist race-baiting. If Trump loses, we’ll have to get over our differences about him to do that. We all had sincere positions on Trump. It wasn’t just preening. It wasn’t unearned moral superiority. We had serious disagreements, but we agree on basic principles. If we can agree on all of that, there’s a future for conservatism.

Unfortunately, the immediate feedback from both camps has been one of mutual recrimination.  Collaborators and traitors seem to be the marching orders of the current environment.

  • H G

    This pledge would likely be as honored by GOPe as their phony pledge to support the republican nominee.

    • That was signed by the GOP presidential candidates, and none other… and its first violator? Donald J. Trump.

      • H G

        Who insisted on it being signed?

        DJT couldn’t violate it, he is the nominee.

        • RNC, I believe… but Trump rebelled against it. Said that no “loyalty oath” should be enforced or introduced.

          On that — and you can look it up in the pages here at Bearing Drift — I vigorously defended Trump.

          • H G

            Refusing to sign a pledge is not the same as signing the pledge and/or insisting others do, only to turn tail and refuse to back the nominee.

            How can he violate a pledge you say he didn’t sign?

          • Now you’re equivocating just to try to be right.

          • H G

            Nope. I am right. You can look it up. Bush, Kasich, Pataki, Cruz, Graham, every establishment candidate refused to endorse and said something to the effect they will not vote for Trump.

            That’s a fact.

          • Stephen Spiker

            It looks like Shaun did look it up, and posted a link that backs him up.

            What do you got?

          • H G

            Logic.

            You can’t support or oppose a nominee until there is a nominee.

          • That’s not logic. You fail. I award you an F+ for trying, though.

          • H G

            You’re hillaryous.

          • H G

            Sure it is. Read the pledge and then try as hard as you can to argue the pledge can be broken prior to there being a nominee.

            You folks need help.

          • If you sign a contract and then repudiate it before completion, you’ve still repudiated it.

          • H G

            Well if were talking about verbally bailing on the pledge prior to any ability to keep it, then you’ve got to include the others who did so. Read the link Shaun posted. Kasich and Cruz were also bailing.

            As for keeping the pledge, I’m right. The GOPe (especially their candidates) turned tail after they lost the nomination.

            That says it all.

          • That others did it does not excuse him for doing the same thing. You can’t complain that others did this when he said himself that he would do it in their position.

            It’s really tiresome to see this moral equivalency happening all the time. Trump’s bad behavior is not and never can be justified simply because others do it too.

          • H G

            My original point had to do with the reaction post primary of the GOPe. Not about the statements made prior to.

            Finally, nobody is justifying Trump here. I’m pointing out the behavior of the GOPe and folks like you.

          • Every time you say “but Hillary!” you are justifying Trump’s bad behavior by declaring she’s the lesser of two evils and what she’s done is worse. It may be true that what’s she’s done is worse but that does not absolve Trump of what he’s done wrong.

            When I see any of you guys acknowledge that he’s not a good person, maybe I’ll believe you’re not bad people, too.

          • H G

            You’ve made your political bed, and you’ll damn sure lie in it.

            Conservatives will see to it.

          • Sure.

          • H G

            The pledge reads: “I, ________, affirm that if I do not win the 2016 Republican nomination for President of the United States I will endorse the 2016 Republican presidential nominee regardless of who it is.”

            See the words “will endorse” and “who”?

          • H G

            Read your link, Doesn’t mention Trump being first, rather it mentions other candidate who changed their mind about the pledge. Notably though, Kasich made the pledge TWICE and is still in the NeverTrump camp. Of course, Bush is still amongst the betrayers of the pledge to this day.

            http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/11/01/what-about-pledge-ex-rivals-still-split-on-endorsing-trump-despite-debate-vow.html

          • H G

            I know he did. He is supporting the nominee.

            In order to violate the pledge he would have to oppose himself.

  • While this is good in concept, there has been way too much bitter animosity for us to simply paper over everything and pretend 2016 didn’t happen.

    • kelley

      1st: many Trump supporters are not hard Rs so we would never see them signing anything
      2d: for hard R Trump supporters, they supported the candidate. Just as they were supposed to. They may find it hard to forgive those Rs who bashed the candidate day in-day out in social media or big media.

      • 1st: Agreed.
        2nd: They shouldn’t. When we nominate someone who is clearly not in line with our principles, it makes little sense to give those who care more about our principles than about one single candidate a hard time. That’s something that’s been drummed into our heads for a while now, so now that people finally agree, now we’re told we should just shut up and get in line? I don’t get it.

        • kelley

          think of all of us who didn’t talk about Cuccinelli everyday on social media. History has proved us right. The Trump-bashers may be right, too, but there are many of us trying to elect him. they could just be quiet

          • H G

            Or… they could talk about the appalling and criminal revelations about the democrat nominee.

          • Her bad behavior doesn’t justify electing him.

          • H G

            Sure as hell does.

            Good grief, Brian.

            Letting Clinton win is inexcusable.

          • It’s no more inexcusable than letting Trump win. We can block Clinton. It will be infinitely harder to block Trump.

          • H G

            You’re flat out wrong.

            Like you blocked Obama? No thanks.

            We’ll deal with your sort after the election.

          • We did block Obama. That’s what you guys don’t get – you look around and act like Obama got anything he wanted that we didn’t allow him after 2011.

            What will he be remembered for? Obamacare – passed in 2009 when we didn’t control Congress. Anything else? Maybe the Iran Deal and getting Bin Laden. Not a single lasting legislative accomplishment after 2011. That you guys can’t see this is astounding to me, but you and your ilk keep repeating it so much you’ve convinced yourself it’s true.

            It’s not. I’m counting on Congress to stop the bad policy ideas either of the two Democrats running try to put up.

          • H G

            Nonsense.
            How you can even make such a claim is beyond me.

            The GOPe has fought and done more to stop Trump in the past year than all their effort combined over the entire Obama years.

            But then again, coming from someone who counts Trump a democrat, is it any wonder?

            You “republicans” who imagine you can erase the pathetic republican record of the recent past simply by re-writing it are horribly mistaken.

            It’s the reason not a single establishment candidate had a flippin’ prayer in the primaries. But, by all means Brian. keep pretending otherwise. See where that gets you.

          • I can make the claim because I’m paying attention.

            You don’t seem to be.

          • H G

            I disagree.

          • Stephen Spiker

            They fault the GOP for passing CRs and keeping the government open — essentially, going along with Democrats and avoiding a shutdown over GOP pet issues.

            Some also point to Chuck Schumer’s quote, delivered with a shit-eating grin, that Republicans gave Democrats everything they wanted. Of course, a cynical old pro like Chuck the Schmuck knew what he was doing when he gave a quote like that.

          • The Trump bashers don’t want you to elect him. That’s the point.

          • H G

            Quite isn’t an option when your an establishment apologist invested 100% in a President Hillary.

  • JayD

    Shaun, you’re beating a dead horse – again. Pro-choice doesn’t mean pro-abortion; it means not interfering with other’s reproductive choices and not forcing fellow citizens to live by your religious beliefs.

    IOW, free people in a free society free to live their lives free from government intrusion in their most private spaces.

    It doesn’t matter if Republicans give each other a break on Trump – nonGOP’rs will remember and state-wide or competative races (in a purple state) aren’t winnable with GOP support alone.

    • Does that include the most defenseless human beings?

      • JayD

        Enlightment couldn’t have occurred without first breaking the shackles of religious dogma, freeing and men to think and expand human knowledge to levels never before allowed by the Church.

        I absolutely respect your belief that life begins at conception. OTOH, science, medicine, and empiricism (very foundations of our nation and modern world) offer evidence to the contrary. So what shall it be – Renaissance restrictions or Enlightenment ideals?

        You take care of your side of the fence; I take care of mine. Isn’t that the very essence of what it means to be free?

        • To the contrary — that’s the basis of the Christian faith, especially as enlightened Romans were abandoning newborns to die from exposure…

          It’s historically ignorant to suggest that the Romans were somehow less free, or shackled, or any of those things by “religious dogma” and so forth. Precisely when did this un-shackling occur? And if that’s the Enlightenment, pray tell what has been the outcome after the Napoleonic Wars, First World War, Second World War, and a legacy of unrelenting and unmitigated abortion?

          Sounds utterly barbaric to me.

          As for science, it absolutely defends the position that human life begins at the very moment of conception. No arbitrary (and empirical? come on…) line has come close to being a firm line with the notable exception of Singer’s “might makes right” idea of viability… which precludes most 16 year olds and quite a few 30 year olds who couldn’t cook themselves a meal past a Hot Pocket.

          Freedom is not license. Liberty is intended to be the balance between tyranny and license; the freedom to do as one ought. That’s liberty… that’s what folks ought to be striving for in a society (and yes, that’s an iterative process… but not an impossible one).

          • David Obermark

            There is no evidence that the fetus possesses brain waves of the type that is evidence of possessing a mind prior to the 22nd week. Allowing the 22nd week is getting to extraordinary occasions because most times it is more towards the 24th week.

            Even St Thomas Aquinas pointed out identical twins do not possess half a soul. His observation pointed out the obvious but leaves unanswered just exactly when does the soul become present? I am thinking that if he were alive today, he would point to the moment at which the fetus possesses a mind. Science points to the 22nd week and he was a man of science.

          • Six weeks is when brainwaves can be detected. Nevertheless, one wouldn’t say that a person in a coma is not a person the moment their brainwave activity has ceased — nor would one argue that someone who is not utilizing their full potential of brainwave activity is not a person.

            Potentiality is not a scientific boundary to define when human life begins.

            As for Aquinas, the standard for medieval scientists was “quickening” — a sort of hybrid between Aristotelian ensoulment vs. what Western science actually knew about how human life began. The more we have learned about human development in the womb, the further back this definition goes.

          • David Obermark

            While earlier “signals” can be detected in the fetus, these signals are not evidence of higher order brain functioning.

          • There are plenty of folks who have been born who don’t exhibit these signals, for a variety of reasons, like my mother. They are still alive.

            There is no point, in my opinion, in trying to settle this question with science. It’s not a scientific question. It’s a morality question. If you still believe it is moral to kill a kid before it has been born, that is your opinion and you should argue why. Don’t attempt to shield the morality of your question with a cloud of scientific spin in a cynical attempt to pretend that what is happening is anytning other than the conscious choice to take a life.

          • David Obermark

            Brian, your mother did not possess brain waves when she was born? REALLY. Can you prove that. I say with confidence you can not. At the point in time your mother was born she either possessed higher order brain waves or she was dead on arrival.

            It is a science question and not a morality question alone. When has the development of the fetus progressed to the point where an abortion is killing a person?

            If we listen to the Catholics, you are not even allowed to use a condom for birth control. If you use a condom, there is no conception but they are against distributing free condoms to prevent abortions.

          • My mother had a massive brain aneurysm nine years ago. She lost almost all of her functions, barely speaks now and can’t do much for herself. Should she be euthanized? I have to speak for her, because she can’t do so for herself.

            The situation is analogous to a kid who hasn’t been born yet. Catholics can choose not to use birth control if they wish, but they don’t make the rules.

            There is no scientific question here. Defining precisely when life begins does not absolve anybody of the moral decision to kill. You don’t need exact millisecond precision here.

          • Mike Dobozy

            Brian, I’m so sorry about your mom. Look, we’re all politics and policy junkies here, and you and I are on different sides of the aisle. Still, arguments about politics and policy seems so trivial when you’ve got a health emergency in your family. Me and mine are pulling for you and yours.

          • Thanks, Mike. It’s been 9 years and mom just celebrated her 70th birthday. None of us believed she’d make it this far, and we are just happy she’s still with us, even if she’s not herself anymore.

          • Mike Dobozy

            That’s great. There’s nothing more valuable in this world than time with the folks that we love.

          • David Obermark

            It sounds like your mother retains some higher order brain functioning so she is not a proper analogy.

          • She’s the equivalent of a newborn – totally reliant on others to survive.

          • JayD

            “As for science, it absolutely defends the position that human life begins at the very moment of conception.”
            Wrong.
            Conception isn’t a ‘moment’.
            Science can’t defend what doesn’t exist.

            Wrong again. Freedom is self-termination, taking responsibility for our own lives; License is doing whatever we feel, at the moment – on a whim; and Liberty is Freedom granted by an external control source.

            Are you really?? suggesting women who choose to terminate a pregnancy are acting on a whim or impulse moment? That would be a paternalistic, outdated, and insulting POV.

          • There most certainly is a moment of conception… are you suggesting that magic (and not science) be substituted here?

          • JayD

            Conception most certainly is not a moment; it’s a 2-day process during which haploid genomes (sperm and egg) gradually and precisely transform into the functioning diploid genome of a new human embryo.

            Not magic… just simple, observable, biological science.

          • You see, moments typically function in this thing called time, right? And it’s not a gradual process at all — at the very moment conception occurs and the other half of the genome is accepted by the egg, no other genetic material is accepted. A process begins…

            …that does not stop until you die.

          • JayD

            So, let me get this straight … in your world, 48 hours = a moment?

            Oddly, the dictionary defines moment as: bit, minute, instant, split second.
            Whatever.

          • “…it’s not a gradual process at all…”

            Words are hard.

          • JayD

            No, words are easy. Having reasonable conversation with unschooled certainists is hard.

      • David Obermark

        A one cell fertilized egg is not a human being Shaun. Care to debate that point? You seem to want to insist it is.

        • Yes I do, not from religious sentiment alone, but from scientific fact. Human life begins at conception and ends at natural death.

          If not — why not?

          • David Obermark

            Because we need to consider at which point does every human cell becomes a person. If a person cuts off their finger, the finger that is cut off is not a person. Not every human cell automatically qualifies to be a person.

          • If you cut a finger off a baby in the womb, that’s not a person . But I’m certain that’s not what you’re driving at, either.

          • David Obermark

            My point is that prior to the 22nd week, if a woman chooses to have an abortion, no person is harmed. After the 22nd week, another person is involved and we need to consider the rights of the other person when the woman makes her choice.

          • Which is not scientifically supported in the slightest. If one is to be consistent, one would have to argue “a brainwave consisting of X” as the definition — which again, precludes all sorts of other individuals one might consider to be “human” (born children, those in a coma, those in a vegetative state, people who are sleeping, etc).

          • David Obermark

            Shaun, go back and do your research. A person who is sleeping still possesses abundant brain waves. Those in a coma either recover or progress to a vegetative state. When they become vegetables I would not suggest we should eat them, but we should allow them to pass away.

          • The interference with the natural process harms both the baby and the mother. Come on, now.

          • Mike Dobozy

            I’m curious – what of ectopic pregnancies, then? They’re certainly natural, although outside the happy path, if you will. Almost any treatment option is going to result in the termination of the pregnancy. Live births are possible, but dangerous, especially in developing countries. Given all of that, is the use of MTX or a salpingectomy/otomy morally licit under double effect? Or is the only morally licit option to just ride it out and deliver as late as possible?

          • If it’s a treatment option, it’s not inherently designed to end in death. If that happens, it happens, but it is not the goal of the procedure, is it?

            If the choice comes down to choose between lives, that’s also a moral choice.

          • Mike Dobozy

            For the options that I mentioned above, it is. Methotrexate (MTX) was originally used as a chemotherapy drug and as an immunosuppressant. Because of its mechanism of action, it started seeing use as a non-surgical treatment for ectopic pregnancies in the 80s. Successful treatment with MTX will result in termination of pregnancy. On the surgical side, a salpingectomy/otomy would also terminate the pregnancy. If we’re starting with the assumption that life begins at conception, then both treatments are inherently designed to end in death – just not the death of the patient.

          • How does a doctor square that with the hippocratic oath?

          • Mike Dobozy

            I’m not an MD, but my guesses: a) they take a modern version of the HO, which almost always removes references to abortion/euthanasia, b) they believe that the life of the patient is paramount (primum non nocere), and allowing an ectopic pregnancy to proceed with no action is definitely potentially harmful, or c) they don’t believe that capital-L life (as opposed to mitotic division life) begins at conception.

          • David Obermark

            I choose to smoke. It harms me. Please allow me to choose too.

            Drinking alcohol harms you. Eating too much harms you. Drinking too many sugary drinks harms you. Failing to exercise harms you. Do I need to go on?

            As long as you are not harming another person by the choices you make, you should be allowed to make them. If you regret the choices later? Well woulda, shoulda, coulda.

          • We get to make these decisions because they largely impact us alone. That’s not what abortion is. You are deciding that another being doesn’t deserve the right to live.

            That’s the point.

          • David Obermark

            Ah, now we are getting to the point. Prior to the 22nd week there is no evidence it is a being/person. It is becoming a person, but it has not yet arrived. Is it human? Well it is human tissue but it is not yet a being.

          • I disagree. A seed that’s sprouting is still the plant you planted, even if it isn’t fully grown and bearing fruit. This kind of thinking is, as I have already stated, an attempt to graft on some kind of scientific feel-good thinking onto the decision to take a life. It’s easier to kill something if you can pretend it’s not actually alive.

        • Yes, it is.

          • David Obermark

            See, this is why when I am forced to choose between the two extremes on the abortion issue I end up supporting the Democrat extreme.

            My opinion is rather moderate, but I am not allowed a moderate choice when I go to vote. On this issue I am always forced to choose between the extreme viewpoints on this issue.

            Here are the choices: condoms are outlawed or the woman should be allowed to choose up till the 32nd week. I do not like my choices.

            Please do not try to defend your extreme position on this issue as my describing your position as being too extreme. That is what the politicians are supporting to prove they get A+ ratings from the pro-life and pro-choice groups that give these ratings.

          • Nobody on the GOP side is seriously arguing to outlaw contraception. I’m not even arguing that we outlaw abortion, because it’s next to impossible to do that, and even outlawing it won’t end it.

            The pro-life movement has got to move beyond outlawing abortion or nibbling at the edges and start focusing on changing behavior and attitudes. That’s why I push back so hard on the clump of cells euphemisms when I see them – the minute we allow people to pretend that they aren’t supporting the death of a life, we’ve lost the moral high ground.

            It’s not a question of being too extreme – it’s a question of who we are and what we want to be. We should want a world where every kid, born or unborn, gets a shot at life and is wanted. That’s the goal. How we get there is where the debate lies.

          • Stephen Spiker

            I know we’ll argue over how seriously he’s considered, but Rick Santorum was the runner-up in 2012 and ran again in 2016, and real quote from him goes:

            “One of the things I will talk about that no President has talked about before is I think the dangers of contraception in this country.”

          • That’s him talking personally. After Griswold, there’s no way to even ban it if anybody actually wanted to. It’s just not a real issue, in my opinion.

  • Lawrence Wood

    A piece of paper isn’t going to shift a historical swing in voter base sentiment regarding the past forty plus years of post Reagan Republican policies and establishment alignments? I rarely agree with you but I do respect your intelligence and I would be the last to deny a man his grasping and his straws but why the flights of fancy? Current events have shifted the availability of electoral path combinations for Trump considerably too where the probability of him to be sitting in the WH come noon Jan.20, 2017 has risen considerably. Going forward Republican’s have two simple choices.

    First, engage in the new political era and work to assist and shape meaningful policy within a Trump administration or second, retreat to some type of rear guard critiquing action that will just see you lose impact in the party, fail to move forward preferred candidates and eventually fade from any position of influence. I suppose there is a third option and that is to transition to the Democratic Party, that many disgruntled Republicans this election cycle have effectively done in action if not outright choice, that is the most serious dead end of all. Given the nature of Virginia party politics you might be able to trim your sails here for a longer period of time then in most state organizations but the writing will still be on the wall.

  • John Frank Reacher

    On a related note, I thought Peter Thiel did a pretty good job today of explaining his rationale for Mr. Trump … https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AfYLEPRiIyE

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