By: Charles Robertson
The Direct TV commercial became an instant classic. It opens with the family at the Dining Room table where the children ask their parents why they settle for cable TV? The ensuing dialog is hilarious and was such a hit that it spawned more versions. I’d like to offer one myself, the storyline opens with the parents emerging from a voting booth, the children rush to them asking who they voted for, the parents respond in unison, “Donald Trump, we’re settlers, we settle.” And so too have millions of Americans; I’m afraid I might be one of them. It’s not like we conservatives aren’t used to settling, think McCain & Romney. It’s just that this time we’re being asked to swallow harder and dip further into the bottom of the barrel.
So strong is my distaste for Trump that I can only consider a vote for him as a vote against Hillary, who I see as far worse. If you don’t want Hillary, the only option to keep her from the White House is a vote for Trump. There’s no other option, case closed. I’ve heard the argument about voting your conscience, but my conscience also has a practical side that considers the bigger picture. But unlike the more obnoxious Trump supporters, I won’t denounce any conservative who’s in the #NeverTrump camp; I’m with them emotionally. There are valid reasons to dislike the Donald, I just think that the time to stop Trump was early in the primary, but now that he’s the GOP choice, it gets simpler.
My wife came up with a great analogy: consider that you only have a choice of 2 schools for your child, neither one is good but one is somewhat better than the other. So, what do you do, you pick the better school of course. Now some will say that you have to send your child to school but you don’t have to vote. To that I’d say, that a non-vote (or a vote for a 3rd party candidate with no chance of competing) favors someone. If you’re a conservative that typically casts a vote for the conservative and you pull your vote, that’s indirectly supporting the liberal candidate. If millions of conservatives react that way, hand it to Hillary. I’d consider a vote for Donald a half measure towards a true conservative, which hopefully will arise in 2020. Just because you reluctantly sent your child to the better of the bad schools doesn’t mean you’re not working to improve the school or working to find better future options.
One of the reasons I can swallow hard and vote for Trump is the big unknown. If elected, no one knows how he would actually govern. Conservatives speculate he’s a liberal in disguise but that’s speculation, it’s hard to say how conservative he might be. If he accomplishes half of his campaign promises, particularly those on immigration, he could prove us wrong and be quite successful. With Hillary there’s no speculation, we could count on 4 more years of Obama and a liberal takeover of the Supreme Court.
The Democratic Party has a diverse collection of special interests that should be at odds with their own party’s agenda; they’re the classic settlers. The Democratic objectives of banning God from the public square to install a secular society, homosexual marriage, and late-term abortions, goes against traditional black values. Liberal feminists who are quick to cry misogyny will be just as quick to ignore verbal insults and slurs leveled at the likes of conservatives such as Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, and Condoleezza Rice. Liberal settlers will overlook a multitude of ideological differences as long as their special interest is supported. Conservatives on the other hand tend to be more principled, often pulling support based on single issues. The bottom line here is that far fewer liberals break rank which is why they win elections.
Statistics show that 93 million eligible voters didn’t vote in the 2012 election. White-voter turnout rates were down much more than voter turnout among other racial groups. The concern in the Trump campaign is how many #NeverTrump conservatives will emerge to either not vote or vote independent. Ironically, conservative anti-Trumpster’s are also anti-GOP establishment and no one has done more to shake up the GOP than Trump. The message of this primary was that Republicans and many Conservatives (not to be confused with each other) are fed up with GOP political impotence. That message will fall short if Trump himself falls short of winning.
My primary objection to Trump is based on his character (see prior blog – Character Counts) and judging on only that quality, I’d still hold him above Hillary. My analogy is that I see Trump as a massive dose of government chemotherapy. The treatment itself is a type of poison with harmful side effects, just like Trump. At this point however, it offers the best chance of killing the cancer, the cancer being illegal immigration, special interests, fiscal irresponsibility, and foreign policy weakness among others. The side effects of Trump would likely be inaction on conservative social issues and a leadership style that would become a rallying point for liberals. If elected, I wouldn’t expect a Trump second term, and that’s where a conservative candidate could finish the work begun by Trump. Yes, I’m a settler, but my eye is on 2020.