by: the Common Constitutionalist
No one has the right to whine about changing the Republican convention rules. Okay, they have every right to whine. The Trumpists can complain all they like, but they have no right to demand the rules be changed. Unlike Obamacare or the TPP, the convention rules have never been hidden. They are accessible to anyone and everyone who enters this arena should darn well know them – chapter and verse. If they don’t – shame on them. So to start whining about the rules now is a bit disingenuous and juvenile. But that’s par for the course in this campaign.
These present convention rules have been in place since before Trump was a Republican. Yes, it’s true. In 2001 Trump was registered as a democrat. Then in 2009 he registered as a Republican. What else happened in 2009? That’s right – it’s the year Trump said that Obama “has the mark of a strong leader” and said Obama’s comments on the economy “have led me to believe that he understands how the economy works on a comprehensive level. I think that he’s really doing a nice job in terms of representation of this country. And he represents such a large part of the country. I think he’s doing a really good job.”
For Trump to say such things shows the mark of man with good judgment and an awareness of the world around him, considering 2009 was also the year of the Obama “Apology Tour,” where The One traveled the world telling every nation who would listen how terrible America was and is. What a great representative of our country. Way to go Donald.
In 2011 Trump again dropped his affiliation. He did not again become a Republican until 2012, which is when I believe he decided to begin preparations to run as a republican after the 2014 midterms.
So how many times must it be repeated to Trump and his followers that a mere plurality of delegates (that’s more than others but less than 50% for all you Trumpists) is not sufficient to secure the nomination? The rules are clear. The rules are just as clear as they are in games like table tennis or volleyball, where the first one who gets to a certain number, maybe 21, wins. The winner isn’t declared when a team gets to 15 or 18 or even 20. Nor at that point do the referees allow the crowd to declare a winner. Make it to 21 and its game over. Don’t make it to 21 and you haven’t won squat.
The Convention rule is that one must secure a majority – that’s 1237 delegates. That’s it. They don’t have to like the rule. No where is it written that if the front runner gets close, that’s good enough.
Now, maybe the rule can be changed and maybe it would be if an establishment guy was getting close, but neither Trump nor Cruz controls the process. That’s the RNC and Reince Priebus. You know – Reince Priebus – the guy who has met with outsider Trump more than once and zero times with Cruz – to my knowledge.
There is a system in place and one must know the rules well enough to navigate it. By changing the rules to a mere plurality, we would never have seen Abraham Lincoln as president. It was another New Yorker, William Seward who entered the convention with a plurality of delegates – 41.5% – more than Trump has presently. Lincoln entered the 1860 convention with far less – only 22% and came out victorious. Lincoln, like Cruz, had the infrastructure to work the convention floor and convince state delegates to come over to his side, winning him the nomination on the third ballot.
Lincoln didn’t steal the nomination from Seward. He and his people knew the rules and worked within them to get the job done. This may be the very thing Trump is afraid of, being that the Cruz people have already secured delegates in other states by using the system. Trump has been firing staffers after every completed state primary, which means he will not have the infrastructure in place should the convention go beyond the first ballot.
Trump may have a plurality now, but his support has hovered around 37%. By employing Trumpist logic, it also means a virtual super-majority is against him. If, like the Trumpists say, we should let the people decide, they have already clearly decided against Trump.