Donald Trump

For Republicans, a Vote for Trump Is a Wasted Vote

Not voting for a conservative at all.

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Hordes of Republicans are rending their garments over their presidential nominee, and more than a few of them have begun to consider whether they should vote for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate—or just stay home.

There is much to commend Johnson, who was twice elected governor of New Mexico as a Republican. But many Republicans who might have been glad to support him if he were in Trump's place are leery of voting for a third-party candidate because they do not want to waste their vote.

To that, Johnson has a ready answer: You're only wasting your vote if you cast it for someone you don't believe in. But there's another answer, too: For conservative Republicans, a vote for Donald Trump is also a wasted vote.

Why? Two reasons.

First, Trump is not a conservative. He changes positions on abortion more often than he changes his socks. The same goes for gun rights. And many other issues. He opposes free trade. He recently suggested he might abandon NATO allies to Russian aggression. He knows nothing about the Constitution—and cares even less.

For years, conservative activists have insisted that GOP candidates like Mitt Romney and John McCain lose elections because they are not conservative enough. Yet compared to Trump, Romney and McCain are Barry Goldwater and William F. Buckley rolled into one. Not only is a Trump administration unlikely to press conservative priorities with any consistency, it seems likely in some cases to push strenuously against them.

"But what about the Supreme Court?" Trump supporters ask. "Hillary Clinton will appoint liberals; say what you will about Trump, at least he will appoint conservatives." Will he? He released a list of some nominees he might consider. Big deal, and good luck holding him to it. Trump is the only figure in public life who lies more often and more brazenly than Clinton does. Why should anyone put credence in a list?

The second reason a Trump vote is a wasted vote is neatly summarized by something Soviet dissident Vladimir Bukovsky wrote more than a decade ago, about torture: "Investigation is a subtle process, requiring patience and fine analytical ability, as well as a skill in cultivating one's sources. When torture is condoned, these rare talented people leave the service, having been outstripped by less gifted colleagues with their quick-fix methods, and the service itself degenerates into a playground for sadists. Thus, in its heyday, Joseph Stalin's notorious NKVD (the Soviet secret police) became nothing more than an army of butchers terrorizing the whole country but incapable of solving the simplest of crimes."

It is quite apparent that the leading intellectual lights of conservatism will have nothing to do with a Trump administration, should one materialize. Already, many conservatives—George Will, Bill Kristol, Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Max Boot, Brent Bozell, Eliot Cohen, Robert Kagan, the entire staff of National Review, Rep. Justin Amash, Rep. Floyd Flake, Sen. Mark Kirk, Sen. Ben Sasse, Peter Wehner, Yuval Levin, and too many others to name—have signaled their unalterable opposition to Trump. They want nothing to do with him now or ever.

In fact, so few movement conservatives want anything to do with him that, as The New York Times reported in March, "When Donald J. Trump finally began to reveal the names of his foreign policy advisers during a swing through Washington this week, the Republican foreign policy establishment looked at them and had a pretty universal reaction: Who?"

"Many of us who have held senior positions in previous Republican administrations have been asking each other if we have ever heard of them," said Mike Green, who served on the National Security Council in the second Bush administration. "And pretty much everybody is turning to Google to see what they can find."

Inter alia, they found that one of Trump's chief foreign-policy advisers lists among his accomplishments his participation in a Model United Nations. In 2012. The other day Trump announced his economic advisers, who were likewise obscure.

This is precisely the dynamic Bukovsky wrote about. With few if any serious policy scholars or principled conservatives willing to work for it, a Trump administration would end up populated by unscrupulous climbers, craven lickspittles and incompetent hacks—the sort of myrmidons who wouldn't know Isaiah Berlin from Irving, or Russell Kirk from Captain. The White House would be Tammany Hall without the dignity. And on the rare occasions when the Executive Branch pursued conservative policies, it would look like a platypus trying to play the flute.

Such a kakistocracy would be horrible—perhaps even disastrous—for the country.

As far as Republicans are concerned, it also would be horrible for their cause. A Trump administration would tarnish the name of conservatism and shame the GOP with ceaseless scandal. It would achieve little if anything from the book of conservative priorities—and what little it did achieve would scarcely be worth the cost.

The dwindling cohort of pro-Trump Republicans have been asking what good could come if they don't support him. They should be asking what possible good could come if they do.

This column originally appeared at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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  1. Hannity’s skull must have exploded when he read this.

    1. At least there isn’t too much mess.

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    2. A molecule of brain matter was expelled.

  2. First, Trump is not a conservative. He changes positions on abortion more often than he changes his socks.

    And as Nick told us yesterday, most conservatives have become single issue voters on abortion.

    1. and war on drugs

      Because drugs are so ‘bad’, the government must do something about it

      1. Some drugs, actually. The Jihad is against enjoyable drugs, mainly the ones that are non-toxic and non-habit-forming like hemp, LSD, ecstasy and mescaline. Lots of deadly drugs–like alcohol, sniffing glue or gasoline–are legal as sea salt.

    2. Isn’t there a libertarian case both for and against abortion?

      Nick and the Judge should maybe debate that on REASON someday. Yes, I know there have been articles like that, but I’d love to see Nick and Napolitano throw down…

      1. No, there is no libertarian case for abortion. There is nothing in the NAP that indicates that initiating aggression against living humans is ok as long as they are not too developed. Claiming that an unborn child’s existence is an initiation of aggression of which the woman can defend herself is simply nonsensical. Everything else is just hand waving. Those who argue otherwise are not libertarians at all. So, Nick, of course.

      2. No there isn’t. What the Bible and Constitution say:
        a. Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones. (Psalm 137:9)
        b. …the free exercise thereof; (1st Amendment)
        c. Section 1. All persons born or naturalized… (14th Amendment)
        What fanatical mystics read:
        a. Send men with guns to force women to reproduce. (Personal Revelation, Left Behind novels)
        b. …the coercive exercise thereof; (As amended by Teatotalitarians)
        c. Section 1. All ova potentially fertilized… (As amended by Teatotalitarians)
        Only mohammedans and the neomohammedan mystical prohibitionists calling themselves conservative believe that sending men with guns to so coerce doctors as to force women to bear their rapist’s child or die of sepsis is ethically correct. True, they have a lot invested in infiltrating the LP, just as communist states did before 1992.

      3. I suppose that’s going to depend both on your premises and where you elect to draw lines. Does Marshall’s point have merit? Is a fetus a “living human” for the purposes of moral consideration? Is an embryo? Why? What quality of humanity merits such consideration? To what extent is that quality possessed at various stages of pregnancy? It the freedom of the mother (or the survival?) and the rights of the offspring conflict, do answers to the above provide a clear-cut answer on which takes precedence? Does that answer vary throughout the pregnancy?

  3. many conservatives?George Will, Bill Kristol, Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Max Boot, Brent Bozell, Eliot Cohen, Robert Kagan, the entire staff of National Review, Rep. Justin Amash, Rep. Floyd Flake, Sen. Mark Kirk, Sen. Ben Sasse, Peter Wehner, Yuval Levin

    Third rate hack cucks won’t MAGA and probably don’t even lift, bro.

    1. Yes. So, let’s throw Trump aside and support Hulk Hogan as the new Grrrrr Party nominee. He has Trump’s demeanor and actually made his own wealth.

      1. Intelligent people say “I will.” Lemmings say “Let’s…”

  4. When torture is condoned, these rare talented people leave the service, having been outstripped by less gifted colleagues with their quick-fix methods, and the service itself degenerates into a playground for sadists.

    But enough about modern policing…

  5. So what is it exactly that conservatives believe in again?

    1. Watching swarthy cantaloupe-calved foreigners ravish their wives just like China is doing to our economy.

      1. That is so… specific.

    2. This year anti-immigration was the litmus test for conservatism for some reason.

      In old Europe conservatives were supporters of the church, monarchy and military.

      There is some of that in American conservatism, but the most workable definition is that the conservative is the one “standing athwart history yelling stop”.

      So an ideology of lost causes, always about to be run over by the on-coming freight train.

      In the case of the Trump movement, baby boomers who don’t want to deal with the realities of 2016, who just want everything to be like it was in the 1950 or 80s and blame foreigners for everything that’s gone wrong since then.

      1. I can’t understand why libertarians think that foreigners are all a bunch of libertarians? How can you all be so blind to the fact that they are mostly socialists and believers in big government welfare statism? I believe in libertarian principles and that’s why I don’t want a bunch of damned anti-libertarian foreigners in my country. What is so hard to understand about that? I don’t consider open borders to be a true libertarian policy at all. In truth open borders is a socialistic welfare statist policy, if you idiots would stop and think about it for a minute. How does everyone on planet earth have the right to move in to my house? Well, they have no right to just move in to my country either, or else I ain’t got no country. That’s it, isnt’ it? I ain’t got no country, do I? And that’s why people hate “libertarians” and want you all to eat excrement and expire.

        1. I search the world for libertarians, and there are few. The main problem is the discredited Wikipedia. Look up “libertarian” there and they swear we are all anarchists, communists, fascists, weathermen, bolivarianos… Yet in Google News Archives going back over two centuries anarchists, communists and other looters have always been that until 1971. Someone is lying.

  6. The White House would be Tammany Hall without the dignity.

    So, President Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho

    1. Because it’s not already Tammany Hall? Because Hillary wouldn’t never sell influence and access? Because all of the “top men” foreign policy advisors have done such a great job and brought us and the world to a great place of great success over the past 16 years? The fuck?

      Anyway, a vote for anyone is a waste, because your single vote makes not a God damn bit of difference.

      1. The point wasn’t an endorsement of Hilary. If anything it’s a tacit suggestion to vote Johnson

        1. Which, if you are a republican/conservative is a vote for Hillary

          1. The “lesser of two evils” fallacy is why we’re where we are today. To keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is not logical.

            1. Spoiler votes have always been the mechanism for change in America. NEVER has a major change in US policy failed to come from the platform of some minor looter or mystical fanatic party. That is how things came to such a pass. Only in 1930 and 1971 have parties emerged more dedicated to freedom than looting–the parties entrenched kleptocracy soft machines struggle to evade. “The case for voting libertarian” is that LP votes repeal bad laws, so YOU win. This is simple, verifiable fact.
              Now.. if you are into losing so that the looters can win instead, that’s a completely different paradigm.

  7. This is precisely the dynamic Bukovsky wrote about. With few if any serious policy scholars or principled conservatives willing to work for it, a Trump administration would end up populated by unscrupulous climbers, craven lickspittles and incompetent hacks?the sort of myrmidons who wouldn’t know Isaiah Berlin from Irving, or Russell Kirk from Captain. The White House would be Tammany Hall without the dignity. And on the rare occasions when the Executive Branch pursued conservative policies, it would look like a platypus trying to play the flute.

    Such a kakistocracy would be horrible?perhaps even disastrous?for the country.

    Today’s vocabulary increased by two, just from this.

    1. Today’s vocabulary increased by two, just from this.

      Just think how much your vocabulary would increase under a *Hillary* presidency!

    2. I am still not entirely sure why the term “Myrmidon” came to be associated with unquestioning followers. The name came from mythic warriors who fought for Achilles. They were known for loyalty, but also bravery.

      1. Well, they were ants transformed into men. I doubt a Trump administration would be that well organized.

  8. You claim Trump isn’t a conservative. While accurate — he’s a non-ideological opportunist — I’m not sure how that’s relevant in any way. Clearly, the vast majority of Republican voters don’t care that he’s not a consistent conservative and will vote for him because he has an R by his name and isn’t Hillary. It’s questionable how much even self-described conservatives care about conservative goals at this point.

    1. The GOP has long been home to democrat castoffs, and those blue friendly R’s make up a significant portion of Trumplins. The article is pointed at the subset of R’s that are conservatives

    2. Just as its questionable how many libertarians care about libertarian goals.

    3. Read the platform. The GO Pee wants a Great Wall of China, trade protectionism, death to planned Parenthood doctors, death sentence for hemp kingpins, death to mystical fanatics exactly like themselves on the other side of the planet (till they hijack more planes), wiretaps on your cellphone and email, asset forfeiture until the economy collapses all over again–this time with nobody to export prohibitionism to and short their stocks!
      Voting for Saracen berserkers would make more sense economically.

  9. Trump’s strategy is to garner the middle finger vote. Toeing the (R) establishment line is counter to that strategy.
    Not sure why the media is so slow to pick up on that. One guess is that they want to suppress the (R) establishment vote in order to give the house and senate to team D.
    End partisanship … vote for single party rule! No more messy investigations to trouble our little heads.

    1. Trump’s strategy is to be the one person on the continent who can make Hillary seems comparatively competent.

  10. Already, many conservatives?George Will, Bill Kristol, Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Max Boot, Brent Bozell, Eliot Cohen, Robert Kagan, the entire staff of National Review, Rep. Justin Amash, Rep. Floyd Flake, Sen. Mark Kirk, Sen. Ben Sasse, Peter Wehner, Yuval Levin, and too many others to name?have signaled their unalterable opposition to Trump.

    When you’ve got intellectual heavyweights like this up against you, what chance do you have?

    Interesting to see how much respect libertarians have developed for the neoconservative right since the end of the Bush administration. And for authority in general, for that matter. Trump is a slow motion trainwreck and the best argument you can come up with for not voting for him is that a bunch of self-appointed party gatekeepers with the intellectual depth of a urinal who think an Ivy League education entitles them to take their turn back at the helm running the country straight into the ground don’t like him.

    “Plus, we have South Park!”

    1. It’s possible to warm yourself by a dumpster fire.

    2. it is amazing that now the same idiots who helped get the U.S. to its crappy internal and international position today are the ones we should listen to. The more these intelectual idiots talk about Trump only proves the reason why so many people like Trump the talking heads are no more consistant than Trump when it suits them.

  11. All this pants-shitting about Trump just makes me want to vote for him even more.

    1. Spite is always the best basis for such decisions.

      1. But how else would we stick it to the cucks, Zeb??

      2. Schadenfreude gets results! Look at your electric bill. That’s the result of medical prostitutes sucking up to conservatives by insinuating LSD mutates your chromiums and cannibal saliva is the gateway to Demonic Possession and mandatory minimums. Howzat?
        Is it any surprise a lot of the victims of this coercive fraud turn around and swear power plants mutate your chromiums and will make sea level cover the Empire State building, and that Wall Street stock exchange jewry is the gateway to Demonic Possession and mandatory minimums?
        Two can play at this business of coercive collectivist pseudoscience. You have only the DemoGOP to thank.

    2. I think you logged in with the wrong account.

      1. Hard to keep so many socks straight…

    3. Translation: the infiltrator wants to vote for a Great Wall of China, trade protectionism, death to planned Parenthood doctors, death sentence for hemp kingpins, death to mystical fanatics exactly like themselves on the other side of the planet (till they hijack more planes), wiretaps on your cellphone and email, asset forfeiture until the economy collapses all over again, militarized cops trained to kill sand n-words now sent out to kill ordinary n-words and teenagers in general.

  12. It is quite apparent that the leading intellectual lights of conservatism will have nothing to do with a Trump administration, should one materialize.

    The horror ….

  13. Congratulations, Mr. Hinkle, for chiming in to smear Trump. YOU and the rest of the mainstream press are all thinking the same and for that REASON you are drawing more people into Trump’s corner. America thanks you. Congrats once again!

    1. and for that REASON you are drawing more people into Trump’s corner.

      *checks time*

      DRINK!

    2. How much does Reason pay the looter press for recycling this kind of pathetic screed?

  14. He’s gotta be working for Hillary. I know it’s impossible to come up with a cogent reason why he would do that, but there is literally no other way to explain his daily self-immolations, and periodic foot-shooting. I’m aware that he’s a narcissistic buffoon, but come on! Picking a Gold Star Family fight, really ?!?! Even he would know not to go there.

    It just doesn’t add up. I’m still not sure what’s going on here, but it looks a helluva lot like false flag.

    1. I thought about that, too (that he was working for Hillary some how). The thing is: he has such a YUGE ego, could he actually stand to be working for anybody but himself? I consider that unlikely.

      More likely, during that alleged meeting with Bill that happened before he started his campaign, Bill probably nudged him into the race — it’s blatantly obvious that this guy is easy as hell to manipulate by just saying how smart he is — to wreak some havoc in the primaries to benefit Hillary. Bill probably had no idea he could actually win the Republican nomination.

      1. I’ve wondered about whether Trump is working for Hillary also. It seems implausible, but not entirely out of the realm of possibility. The Republicans had sixteen pretty good candidates, just about any of which could have beaten Hillary handily, yet managed to nominate the one who seems destined to lose big. If Hillary wins, she’ll actually be highly beholden to the Trumpster. He might well conclude that there’s more advantage to owning a president than to being one…

        Of course, if that’s true, he must be counting on Hillary to be a gracious winner. Boy, is he in for a surprise!

      2. This, together with the humiliation Trump suffered at the hands of Obama and Seth Meyers during the 2011 White House Correspondents Dinner, is the most likely explanation for Trump’s abominable campaign that I’ve heard.

  15. Funny to watch as the Trumpkins try to explain away the resounding defeat of their autocrat-wannabe by saying “He was a patsy for Hillary” or “He never really wanted the job to begin with!” Their goal is to retrench and try again in a few years.

    Pro tip: “Half measures availed us nothing.”

  16. Trump is terrified of the debates with Hillary. He is fantasizing about excuses, and one of them got the better of him yesterday.

    1. Welcome to Retardation: A Celebration. Now, hopefully, I’m gonna dispel a few myths, a few rumors. First off, the retarded don’t rule the night. They don’t rule it. Nobody does. And they don’t run in packs. And while they may not be as strong as apes, don’t lock eyes with ’em, don’t do it. Puts ’em on edge. They might go into berzerker mode; come at you like a whirling dervish, all fists and elbows. You might be screaming “No, no, no” and all they hear is “Who wants cake?” Let me tell you something: They all do. They all want cake.

  17. Since when is the GOP or even a majority of its voters “conservative”? And what the fuck does being “conservative” even mean anymore?

    Usually when writers concern troll they make some effort to keep it from being this obvious. We all make fun of virtue signaling but I find it difficult to believe the author thinks this article is going to convince anyone not already on his side. The entire purpsoe seems to be signal his virtue in objecting to Trump,.

    Then of course there is the obvious point that Hillary is everything Progressives and Democrats claim to loath. Yet, I doubt reason will be running any articles explaining how Democrats are wasting their votes voting for Hillary.

    Reason should just endorse Hillary already. The honest position is always the better one.

    1. No possibility of reading this a gay jay outreach to conservatives, huh?

      1. I dunno. It seems to me that last time he worked harder at courting conservative voters, he looks to be going after progressives this time.

        Although, on Isidewith I get gay jay as my top match and Trump in second. Hillary is at the freaking bottom, well above that wack job Stein at least.

    2. “Since when is the GOP or even a majority of its voters “conservative”?”

      I cant wait for a bunch of disillusioned bernie bros to vote for Gary, then I can just claim that the LP is just a bunch of socialist wannabes.

    3. A conservative is a prohibitionist Jihadist for Jesus. This is very different from an islam-amok Jihadist for Mohammed. Both worship prohibitionists with guns, both bully women, both believe in bloodthirsty altruistic medieval superstition with no basis in fact as an ethical standard, but there is a difference… of degree.

  18. The guy criticizes Trump for saying US might not come to rescue poor little Estonia if big bad Ruskies want to take their silly ill country ? The very idea Trump should question our entangling alliances!

    1. Exactly why did Trump feel the need to make this declaration?

    2. Yea considering both Obama and Bush protected former USSR states oh wait they didn’t either so whats the purpose

  19. Poor John. I kinda feel sorry for the old man. Reason running so many anti-Trump articles has him running ragged these days. The cracks from Trump Support Strain are really starting to show. I hope he doesn’t have a breakdown before the election.

    1. You need to stop projecting. If Trump wins, I get to listen people like you cry about it. If he loses, I get to watch the great Hillary trainweck and watch people like you get blamed for it. I really can’t lose. Never Trump conservatives in contrast face a grim future. If Trump wins, they are finished because he will have built a new coalition that doesn’t need you. If he loses, they will be blamed for the resulting Hillary disaster. Best of all is when 2020 rolls around and someone even more outrageous that Trump picks up his banner and gets the nomination again. The crying and whaling over that is going to be priceless. And even better is mocking your current appeals to “principles” after you break down and support that guy.

      Or maybe you can run another former CIA agent Goldman Sachs guy for President. You can play kingmaker with that giant SOCON Wilsonian nation building open borders block of voters. Good luck with that.

      1. I’m just looking out for your wellbeing. Because even though I think the world would be better off without you, I’m not so crass that I’d actually wish you were dead. You’re starting to show some serious wear around the edges. Maybe you should take a vacation to relieve some stress.

        1. No sparky. You are just stupid. Having a low IQ often causes a person to have a warped perception of reality. I wish I could help you out but as they say, “you can’t fix stupid”

          1. Oh, John. You don’t need to flatter me.

            By the way, can you tell me who “my guy” is? Also, why I would cry if Trump were elected? I’ve searched my soul and couldn’t find the answers. I know you’re better at it than I am so could you help a guy out here?

      2. My imagination is impaired. Who are the potential Trumps waiting in the wings to amuse and horrify is in 2020?

        1. Probably a fisherman what with the uptick in whaling which will come about.

        2. Kim Kardashian? She’s already halfway there by declaring she’s not a feminist.

        3. I hear Lyndon LaRouche is getting cloned, with Glenn whutzisname, the yack show host, contributing the equivalent of the Jurassic Park frog DNA.

  20. “The White House would be Tammany Hall without the dignity”

    What makes you think it isn’t Tammany Hall right now?

    “Trump is the only figure in public life who lies more often and more brazenly than Clinton does.”

    Citations needed.

    1. Yeah, that right there struck me as quite the whopper itself.

    2. Pretty sure we’re getting “unscrupulous climbers, craven lickspittles and incompetent hacks” either way…

      1. Where do I sign up for Huma to lick my spittle?

        1. Back of the line, bub!

          /Hillary

  21. It’s entirely possible to vote for Trump on the issues. I don’t agree with him on a whole list of things–but it’s possible to agree with him.

    To vote for Hillary Clinton, you have to ignore her disgusting penchant for corruption before you can even notice where she stands on the issues.

    You have to willfully disregard Hillary’s actual behavior to focus on where she says she is on any issue.

    Is Hillary Clinton as bad as Pol Pot? No, of course not, but if I sat here and told you all about what Pol Pot said on medical marijuana or some other issue, wouldn’t that necessarily trivialize his role in the Cambodian genocide?

    Where Hillary Clinton stands on issues x, y, and z is like that. You have to willfully ignore the fact that she took money from foreign governments while she was the Secretary of State to think her stance on the issues makes any difference.

    Reasonable people cannot disagree on the impropriety of what Hillary Clinton did (and continues to do even while she’s running for President).

    Trump may be wrong on the issues.

    Hillary winning will rightly bring the legitimacy of the government into question.

    1. Yep. Remember, she obviously and openly sold favors to foreign governments for money.

      She is Eva Peron level of corrupt.

    2. Hillary winning will rightly bring the legitimacy of the government into question.

      … and then, as now, most won’t talk about it… or care.

  22. If I vote for Hillary I WILL lose my first and second amendment rights.

    If I vote for Trump I MIGHT lose my first and second amendment rights.

    So yeah, thats a shitty position to be in, but why vote for the pre-ordained fate?

    1. Move to texas. Buy guns on lunch break.

      1. Yep, that’s an actual option….

    2. If I vote for Hillary I WILL lose my first and second amendment rights.

      If I vote for Trump I MIGHT lose my first and second amendment rights if Trump loses and Hillary gets in anyway

      FTFY. Trump is threatening neither the first or the second amendment. While he wants to make it easier to bring suit for libel against media conglomerates, he is not asking for reductions in the burden of proof. As much as his detractors want to equate this with the Dems and the lefts all out war against even the concept of free speech, it is not.

      1. “Trump is threatening neither the first or the second amendment.”

        Oh really?

        Just one small example:

        http://www.dailywire.com/news/…..nk-berrien

        “I think it’s a disgrace that he’s allowed to do it. I think it’s a disgrace that he’s allowed to say it ? You look at so many of the ministers that are backing me, and they’re backing me more so than they’re backing Cruz, and I’m winning the evangelical vote. It’s disgraceful that his father can go out and do that. And just ? and so many people are angry about it. And the evangelicals are angry about it, the way he does that. But I think it’s horrible. I think it’s absolutely horrible that a man can go and do that, what he’s saying there.”

        1. Come on, that sort of buffoonery isn’t a serious attack on the First Amendment.

          Even if Trump actually believed it, do you seriously think he has the skill or political power to do anything about it?

    3. This is such a shitty argument it pains me whenever it is brought up.

      How do we KNOW that Hillary will shred the Constitution? We can draw a reasonable conclusion based on her past actions and her current positions. So, why can’t we apply the same analysis to Trump? Instead, the people who want to claim “oh, we have NO IDEA what Trump will do, he is just a giant wildcard” is applying a much more generous standard to Trump than they would ever apply to Hillary.

      Trump has voiced support for restrictions on the press, he supports the terrible Kelo decision, he is either indifferent or hostile when it comes to claims of religious liberty, his overarching focus on “law and order” suggests that he will favor law enforcement’s point of view when it comes to Fifth Amendment issues… I could go on, but it is clear that if you apply the SAME standard to Trump as you would to Hillary, you come to the inescapable conclusion that yeah, neither one of them is even remotely pro-liberty.

      Plus it does not speak well of Trump’s supporters when they believe a compelling argument in his favor is “well, we’re not sure if he will shred the Constitution, I’m willing to take that gamble!”

      1. Hillary is on record asking for a god damned constitutional amendment that would make it illegal for incorporated groups to criticize her.

        She can go to hell on that one….

        She admires Australia’s confiscation of guns, and would love to do that here.

      2. How do we KNOW that Hillary will shred the Constitution? We can draw a reasonable conclusion based on her past actions and her current positions. So, why can’t we apply the same analysis to Trump?

        We can: Hillary has the means and the motive to kill the First and Second Amendments: it’s supported by her voters, and she is a shrewd politician who can get things done.

        Trump has neither the means or the motive. Trump’s voters don’t care, and he is an ignorant and offensive buffoon who Congress members of either party wouldn’t give the time of day to if their lives depended on it.

    4. How much cash money you wanna bet on that prophesying?

  23. I am lolling at the idea of senator Kirk, for example, declining the offer of sec def from president trump. Unlikely. If Trump wins, he is going to have a whole bag of things the nevertrumpers want. And they will convince themselves they have no choice but to serve their country.

    And if they don’t, then they better STFU and stop complaining.

  24. a Trump administration would end up populated by unscrupulous climbers, craven lickspittles and incompetent hacks

    Sounds a lot like the Obama administration. Valerie Jarrett et al aren’t exactly paragons of competence.

  25. I disagree. Clinton doesn’t lie any less than Trump. She’s just better at it.

  26. Anybody but Hillary.

  27. Finally a non-nicktarded piece. More please.

  28. the Republican foreign policy establishment looked at them and had a pretty universal reaction: Who?”

    “Many of us who have held senior positions in previous Republican administrations have been asking each other if we have ever heard of them,” said Mike Green, who served on the National Security Council in the second Bush administration. “And pretty much everybody is turning to Google to see what they can find.”

    War on Drugs, support for mass murderers in central America, Two invasions of Iraq, Panama, etc – yeah, these people not being known to the incumbents of Republican foreign policy is not exactly a negative here.

    1. Roger that. A whole lot of famous republicans christian nationalsocialists were hanged at Nuremberg, and weren’t all that sadly missed. Apparently there were plenty more where those came from.

  29. The White House would be Tammany Hall without the dignity. And on the rare occasions when the Executive Branch pursued conservative policies, it would look like a platypus trying to play the flute.

    The White House is already Tammany Hall – the ‘dignity’ only serves to make it easy for people to lie to themselves about what’s going on there.

  30. Well argued, except for the part about foreign policy expertise. Why should we have confidence in any so-called expert who served under George W. Bush? These are the people who gave us unconstitutional surveillance, 9/11, Iraq, torture, and ultimately a world war. They are the worst bunch of incompetent criminals ever to populate the national security establishment. The idea that we should welcome them back into a Republican administration because everyone knows who they are is one of the main reasons so many people support Trump. They want to make sure old hands, as they’re called, never have power again.

    That’s why having fifty prominent people sign a letter that criticizes Trump’s foreign policy is such a laugher. When they were stewards of U.S. foreign policy from 2001 to 2009, where did they lead us? They drove the car right off the bridge. Of course, they’re still telling us all of their failures are President Obama’s fault!

    That’s not to say Trump’s people, or his foreign policy, would be better.

  31. I will vote Johnson/Weld unless it looks really close, but without evidence of pedophilia against trump I would still pick him over Hillary

    1. Great minds discuss third-party platforms. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss politicians.

  32. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.
    +_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+……………… http://www.onlinecash9.com

  33. If Trump wins, they are finished because he will have built a new coalition that doesn’t need you. If he loses, they will be blamed for the resulting Hillary disaster.

  34. It is quite apparent that the leading intellectual lights of conservatism will have nothing to do with a Trump administration, should one materialize

    That’s rather the point. Sounds like a ringing endorsement of Trump to me.

    Barton still seems to live under the delusion that the point of an election is to vote for the politician that makes the best promises and has the most power to get things done; but since those promises are lies on both sides, the point of an election is rather to guess what the politician will actually do. And a president who can’t pass any laws because Congress hates him and won’t give power to any “leading intellectual light” actually seems quite attractive compared to one with a strong power base and is in bed with the “leading intellectual lights” of Washington.

    When people say they want “an outsider” who isn’t “part of the Washington political machinery”, that actually implies that they want someone politically weak because he is politically unconnected.

  35. I learned a new word: kakistocracy

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