Never Trumpers Need to Learn the Art of the Deal

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Beau Correll, a Virginia delegate to the Republican National Convention to be held next week in Cleveland, Ohio filed suit in federal court recently to be released from his state’s legislated obligation to vote for Donald Trump. Correll made this request even though Trump was the winner of Virginia’s latest primary vote during the first ballot at the convention. Yesterday the court ruled in his favor.

This ruling begs the question: how is it Correll was chosen to represent Trump as a delegate to the convention? According to one report he was a Cruz supporter before his state’s primary and never was for Trump. Apparently he became a delegate to the convention solely on the basis of his chairmanship of the Winchester Republican Committee, not on the basis of his being selected dutifully and honorably to represent Donald Trump, the winner of his district’s contest.

Folks, we live in a republic. In each individual state we elect representatives by popular vote to represent us locally, statewide, as well as in the House and Senate of Congress. The representatives we elect are known to us in various ways: through their campaigns for office and their records in office and out of office. It is not so with delegates sent to Republican conventions. Our delegates are generally unknown, especially in regards to the personal and political loyalties and encumbrances they bring to their duty of answering roll calls for the voters of the candidate they are sent to represent at the convention. Some delegates know where all the bodies are buried.

No one refuses such power brokers a seat to the convention, regardless what candidate they are sent to the convention to represent. At the conclusion of some state primaries and caucuses losing candidates are allowed, strongly encouraged to send their people to the delegate selection meetings, sometimes flooding the events with votes for delegates totally unfriendly to the winner or winners. Trump has been roundly criticized and condemned for not knowing about such rules and procedures in the various states. He has been declared unfit for office because he did not send his people to locations where other candidates won primaries and caucuses, so he could take advantage and share in the spoils of an utterly flawed delegate selection process. Candidates should have a voice in the selection of the party’s nominee for the office of President. How specifically? When a candidate wins, his people only should select delegates to represent him.

Our republic is largely distinguishable from most other forms of government because of its adherence to the separation of powers. Similarly all the actors of Republican National Conventions have rolls, powers they exercise and should not surrender to other actors who have their own rolls and powers to exercise and not surrender. Candidates, already noted, are rightful actors to a convention. States have always been actors. They have an active interest. They want their voter’s voice and the will of the state as a whole heard, some in more or less diluted forms than others. Some states have carelessly allowed open primaries and proportional divvying of the delegates to more than one winning candidate. Other more prudent states have made the legislative determination, not only to sponsor closed primaries but also, since delegates chosen for candidates are often of questionable loyalty to their assigned candidate, they direct the delegate to make the voter’s voice heard at least one time during the convention, at that moment in time when their voice can count most, during the first ballot that hopefully will determine who will be the party’s nominee for the office of President of the United States.

Until yesterday, the state of Virginia was a participant in the Republican National Convention. No more. Until yesterday the voters of Virginia, through properly legislated protections provided by Virginia’s legislature, were a participant in the Republican National Convention. No more also. The decision has signaled to Virginia’s Republican Primary voters they are no longer needed. They can stay home in 2020. No one previously thought delegates could exercise so much power as they will next week. Now the delegates think they can do so, and likely will.

Right Lives Matter would disagree with this assessment. They claim the voters in Virginia and elsewhere made a terrible mistake when they chose Trump over every other candidate in the field, a mistake RLM is entitled to correct because they are the smartest people in the room. We can be sure RLM was overjoyed to hear Correll had fished around for someone with a phone and pen, the federal courts, to help reverse the unwitting error of the Trump voters. Sound familiar? The Left frequently takes advantage of and creates just such separation of powers confusions to further their causes. Then there is the RLM argument, the Republican National Convention is a private event with rules rightfully dictated by same, meaning whatever the convention says the delegates can do, the delegates can do. Up until yesterday all the actors: the candidates, states, voters, and delegates had a substantial though limited influence over a convention. Not any longer. Now it’s all about the delegates. Which begs yet another question: can America survive much more of Right Lives Matter?

Right Lives Matter is a right wing terrorist organization devoted to overturning Donald Trump’s triumph in a majority of the states’ primaries and caucuses. They certainly do not understand how Trump could have possibly won. They insist his deaf and blind voters were deceived by a conman. More significantly, RLM feels justified in doing whatever they must, constitutional or not, with proper tone or not, whether agreeable to the conduct and governance of a Republic or not, to #NeverTrump Trump.

Here’s a secret: Trump won as he succeeded in making the deal with voters. He made promises he refused to apologize for later. He showed he was willing to negotiate and alter his policies within his ever expanding circle of like-minded friends and supporters. He won because he spoke to his voters and supporters like friends talk to friends: without talking points, written speeches, Teleprompters, or hidden agendas. Friends are just glad to be together. What is said is usually low tier. Smiles and frowns count. Specifics are trusted to later, at least among friends. Trump won because he is politically incorrect, in the faces of the Left. The Sixteen tried to simulate Trump’s political incorrectness. Only they did most all their practicing in the faces of the other Republican candidates for the office of President, not in the faces of the Left. Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and others called Trump names, just like Trump called them names. The wannabes were harsh, abusive, sometimes hateful, and didn’t watch their tone; just like Trump.

But they wobbled just contemplating getting in the face of the Left and failed to do the same as Trump did: freely, genuinely, and un-apologetically. In fact the Sixteen invariably doubled down in their efforts not to emulate Trump. When challenged by the Left and its media, as a favor to Trump we must suppose, they made every effort to dial down Trump’s political incorrectness for him. They apologized for his antics. They misquoted him. They misrepresented the context of his statements. Then they attacked him on the basis of those misquotes and misrepresentations. In fact, it would seem they had very little to attack Trump for except when they went out of their way to misquote and misrepresent him.

  • Right Lives Matter lives on, survives on a single seriously flawed perception. Contrary to what they think, Trump voters do know what they ordered at the counter: Trump, the only candidate willing to take on the Left as defiantly and obstinately as RLM has taken on Trump.
  • Right Lives Matter lives on, survives on a single seriously flawed hope. Contrary to their expectations, Establishment Republicans will not finally relent and give RLM’s side their very first victory in eight years, the gift of a perfectly pure conservative presidential candidate like Cruz to lead the party. If Trump is defeated, the next nominee will be just another Romney/Bush serving of DC-centric milquetoast.
  • Finally, Right Lives Matter lives on, survives on a single seriously flawed assumption. Contrary to what they want to believe, a fair process for the selection of our presidential nominee is far more important than the conservative pedigree of the candidate selected. Without a fair process there will be no healing when Republicans must come together to win in November. Without a fair process several very valuable convention actors and perhaps millions of voters might stay home four years from now.

If the Republican National Convention hopes to conduct and finish its business while under fire from Obama’s Impending Democracy Spring in Cleveland, Ohio; if conservatism or the Republican Party desires to survive beyond next week’s convention, Right Lives Matter needs to drink the hemlock.

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The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by iPatriot.com.

Don Swank

Don is a semi-retired window washer, an active runner, and occasional bird watcher. Don earned his B.A. Degree in Business and Economics at Seattle Pacific University in 1971, and his M.Div. Degree at Asbury Theological Seminary in 1974. He lives near Toledo with his wife of 40 years. Visit and Like on Facebook when you can, from the Website link below:

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