The Best Support Trump Can Get

Donald Trump mocking reporter Serge Kovaleski

Donald Trump mocking reporter Serge Kovaleski

From a principled man, that is

A number of people are predictably upset that Senator Ted Cruz didn’t openly endorse Donald Trump for president last night.  We expected this from liberals within the Republican Party, and we expected this from the STrumpets who mindlessly believe Donald Trump will “make it all great” (despite voluminous facts to the contrary). In fact, like RINOs usually do, they went out of their way to try and paint Cruz as negatively as possible. It’s in the nature of the RINO beast to hate conservatives.

But sadly, gauging from some reactions, it is apparent that many conservatives are yet again allowing liberals to tell them what they should think and do. You’d think after the last several election cycles, conservatives would finally be smart enough not to do that, but it seems some folks never learn.

I’ve seen a number of comments in the last 12 hours or so, criticizing Cruz’s principled stand as a “me moment” which stole the glory from their Trump god.

You know, as I’ve watched lots and lots of RINOs over the past eight years or so, it’s become a frequent tactic of RINOs to claim, any time a conservative stands on principle, that the conservative is “grandstanding” or otherwise trying to draw attention to themselves.

Have you ever heard of “projection”? Projection is basically what disingenuous people do when they attribute their own base motives and qualites to others. We frequently see it when Democrats (the party that fought for slavery, segregation and discrimination for 150 years) calls conservatives “racists.”

We also see it when RINOs (who often embrace liberal positions because it’s the easy thing to do, the thing that can most easily win them favor and accolades) accuse conservatives of “grandstanding” when conservatives stand on principle. RINOs have no principle, but they do manage to perceive that good people admire someone who stands on principle. They see that admiration good people have for a principled stand, and they attribute “grandstanding” to the principled one; that’s easier than coming to terms with the fact that they themselves are wrong.

Woodrow Wilcox


For Ted Cruz, the politics is about more–much more–than supporting any guy wearing our jersey.  It’s about far more than supporting somebody simply because of the letter they have after their name (especially if that somebody has made a mockery of the principles for which that letter stands).  It’s about the principles that party is supposed to stand for.  Even bigger than that, it’s about the health and longevity of the United States and our liberty.  Ted Cruz knows it’s not about Ted Cruz; that’s why he’s always been so passionate about the Constitution and about liberty.  He knows America is, as Abraham Lincoln said, the last, best hope of earth.

Cruz, being a man of honor and principle, did the best he could do in an impossible-to-win situation. He quickly congratulated Trump on his primary win. Cruz went on to encourage people to not stay home, but to get out and vote in November. He encouraged people to vote up and down the Republican ticket for candidates, according to conscience, who can be trusted to uphold the Constitution (after all, who would argue that people SHOULD vote against their conscience, or vote for candidates who can’t be trusted to uphold the Constitution?).  If Trump is even half-way worth voting for in the first place, all of these admonitions support Trump’s endeavor to win in November.

Apparently that’s not enough for Trump and his acolytes. If one does not kneel before Zod, one is impudent and must be destroyed.

Me?  If I had been on that stage last night, I would have felt compelled to tell people not to vote for a lying, narcissistic liberal with an “R” after his name like Donald Trump, to vote Constitution Party for president instead.  For quite some time, I’ve been done with supporting Democrats who have an “R” after their name, just because they’re in my party. I’m a Republican because the Republican Party has documented its support for the conservative values I believe in; I’m not a Republican because I like elephants or don’t like donkeys.

But Cruz did the best he could to honor his pledge to support the nominee and to not launch a third-party bid–a nominee who has a decades-long record of liberalism and support of Leftists, a nominee who mocked a disabled reporter and sounds like an oversexed teenager when it comes to women, who can’t maintain a consistent position on many issues that lasts longer than two sentences, and who knows no depth to which he will not stoop when it comes to smearing his enemies (insulting and smearing Heidi Cruz, claiming Cruz’s dad was involved with the JFK assassination, etc.). No loyalty is owed to a liberal in the first place–certainly not to a lowlife lying liberal like Donald Trump.

It should also be pointed out that, to the best of my knowledge, neither Ted Cruz nor any other candidate pledged to endorse who ever the nominee was. They (well, who knows what Trump did, with his back-and-forth flip-flopping) only pledged to support the nominee, and to not launch a third-party bid.  By any reasonable definition, Cruz lent support to the nominee last night.

As for Trump, Trump made a mockery of such pledges of support himself. First, he refused to pledge to support the nominee. Then, perhaps after he realized he could shoot somebody in the middle of Fifth Avenue and still get elected, he pledged support for the nominee. Then he openly backed out of pledging again.  No loyalty is owed to a vacillating weasel like that.

In fact, Trump made it clear recently that he has no real loyalty to the overall good of the Republican Party, specifically to the other Republicans running for different offices this year. He said he wasn’t terribly concerned whether Republicans kept control of the Senate, and he’d just as soon be a “free agent” as president. Hmmm. Trump demands total fealty and absolute support from everyone, but when it comes to his support for other Republicans….well, not so much. Cruz must kneel before Zod, but Trump could give a rip about keeping the U.S. Senate (which holds confirmation power over judicial nominees) out of Democrat hands.

Interestingly, many of the same people I’ve heard criticize Cruz for not endorsing Trump are also big fans of Rand Paul–who isn’t even at the Republican convention at all.  Interesting. Cruz congratulates Trump on his win, encourages people to get out and vote in November, and vote up and down the Republican ticket for candidates as conscience dictates…and that makes him a self-absorbed jerk. Rand Paul doesn’t even show up…but that’s okay.  So was it really about the values and principles for these people…or was it just about the man?  “MY GUY!”, and to Hell with principle, eh?

It’s particularly interesting that a lot of Trump’s disciples supporters (and presumably Trump himself) don’t think encouraging people to get out and vote in November and vote for the Republican ticket for people who can be relied on to uphold the Constitution, according to conscience, is good enough.  If Trump and his followers believe Trump doesn’t fit that description, that’s on Trump, not Cruz. As Steve Deace put it: “Telling Republicans to ‘vote their conscience’ can only be an affront to the GOP if they’re admitting a vote for Trump violates conscience.”

Whether Cruz’s speech ends Cruz politically, who knows. For sure, it’ll be used against him by unprincipled liberals in the Republican Party without a doubt.

But as for average, decent people, I’m not so sure. As I pointed out, I’m one of those who is glad he didn’t say “Vote for this scumbag because he has an ‘R’ after his name.”  I think many others, especially if Trump actually manages to pull off a win, will get to see enough of his behavior that they will eventually come to the full knowledge of exactly why what Cruz did for him (congratulate him, encourage people not to stay home on election day, and to vote the Republican ticket up and down as they could according to conscience) was an extremely generous gesture, and that a reasonable person could not have done more without sacrificing their integrity and encouraging people to support a dirtbag.

Donald Trump’s vileness is doing immeasurable and perhaps irreparable damage to the Republican Party. Whether Trump wins or loses in November, there is and will be breathtaking damage.  I believe Cruz is trying to lay the groundwork for conservatives to pick up the pieces once Trump slithers off the stage, and hopefully put the GOP–and the country–back together again.  That’s why he talked about the principles upon which the GOP was founded, the principles we still cling to in our platform–those are the basis for our real unity, not the man at the top of the ticket.  If there isn’t some sort of framework, some sort of road map to point us in the right direction after the Trump dumpster fire is over, then the GOP and America are truly sunk for good.

One thing I’m sure of, despite what the pundits say.  It wasn’t ambition or self-absorption that led Cruz to withhold an outright endorsement of the worst example of a GOP presidential nominee in history.  It was principle and love for America, and the hope that there is something left to put together after this disastrous 2016 election where we, through our own stupidity and fear, came down to a choice between two lying liberals for president.

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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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