November 15, 2016

Whither goest #NeverTrump?

The clear distinction between diehard progressive liberals and #NeverTrump that is visible to date is that the latter have accepted a Trump presidency and in many cases are actually hopeful (though unconvinced) that some good will come out of the 2016 election.  The former group are out in the streets creating havoc, or at a minimum sporting Not My President placards.

There's another important distinction. While the Democrat party are never going to work with president-elect Trump (though many say they will), team #NeverTrump now realize that this was not just a Trump win.  They see that Republicans still control the senate, congress, the presidency, the supreme court and a stunning number of state legislatures and governorships, with the wind at the back of the Republicans in the senate for 2018.

Every challenge is also an opportunity and those on the conservative and Republican side have largely realized this.  Today Paul Ryan even said big things are coming.  That's a profound revelation.  It's not about revelling in the glow of the win, it's about the GOP having more power than they have in nearly 100 years. The opportunity does not present itself often obviously. The window, despite the very real prospect of further gains in 2018, is inevitably going to be short.  Furthermore, under Obama the aggressiveness in the shift left for the country was astounding.  Their actions not only justify a strong reaction, but also provide some limited cover for that reaction.  Obama also spelled out for conservatives exactly what "the fierce urgency of now" means.

#NeverTrump is more likely to be heard and influential from inside the tent than outside the tent.   Trump and his supporters meanwhile have won and allies in politics are hard to find.  There's little harm in working together and developing some synergy with those who were #NeverTrump in order to have that notion dissolve away and get things done rather than alienate them in some sort of vendetta.  No one wants Trump have to get his allegiances from the Sanders crowd because that will not only enshrine that #NeverTrump was right but possibly destroy what's left of the republic in the process. I don't think anyone expects that at this point, but why leave it to chance.

So unless your name is Glenn Beck, you're probably safe to come back into the tent.  Many are doing so openly, some more reluctantly, and some not at all. It's up to Trump and his team to move people from (pardon the phraseology) from the bucket of resolute, to the bucket of hesitant to the bucket of surprised and now on board. It's also up to the #NeverTrump crowd to make up their minds so they don't end up (again, pardon the wording), at the back of the bus, because some other people are now getting ahead of them in the lineup.


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