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Donald Trump is starting to look like a juggernaut that nobody has the means to prevent from rampaging forward. He is apparently driving key party power brokers to desperation. The mood of some people in the party was summed up Thursday by Republican lobbyist and former congressman Vin Weber. Here’s what he said:
“All of a sudden, everybody is saying ‘Oh My God — the house is burning down we should have done something before it got this far.”
Senator Marco Rubio pulled out of the presidential race on Tuesday after admitting his failure to take Trump down. He had grim forecasts for the state of the Republican Party on his first day back at work in the Senate on Thursday. To quote him:
“Hopefully, there’s time to still prevent a Trump nomination, which I think would fracture the party and be damaging to the conservative movement”
Anti-Trump forces are slowly but surely starting to realize what a backlash they would face if they were to deny him the nomination. Trump himself warned earlier this week that the convention could easily deteriorate into a “riot” if he is blocked from power. Moreover, on Friday, a top Trump aide threatened to step from his role as a convention delegate and leave the Republican Party if Trump is blocked from the nomination. Here’s what Sam Clovis, a national co-chair for Trump’s campaign, said Friday:
“I will tell you this, if the Republican Party comes into that convention and jimmies with the rules and takes away the will of the people, the will of the Republicans and the Democrats and Independents who voted for Mr. Trump, I will take off my credentials, I will leave the floor of that convention, and I will leave the Republican Party forever.”
The deepening anxiety in the GOP was underscored when prominent conservative leaders organized a meeting in Washington Thursday and dedicated their time to finding a way to prevent Trump from securing the 1,237 delegates he needs to become his party’s representative in the presidential elections. Trump did fail to win Ohio on an otherwise successful night of primaries Tuesday, and this opened a narrow window for opposing forces in the Republican Party to snatch the nomination from his hands, simply because it lengthened his odds of winning a majority of delegates. But at this point, it merely seems like they are struggling for breath in a 50ft deep pool full of acid water, filled with very hungry man-eating sharks.
Conservative activist Erick Erickson raised the specter of a “unity” ticket to stop Trump in a statement he issued after the meeting. He compared the current situation to the party’s revered icon Abraham Lincoln, who wasn’t nominated until after the third convention ballot. The statement reads:
“We believe that the issue of Donald Trump is greater than an issue of party. It is an issue of morals and character that all Americans, not just those of us in the conservative movement, must confront.”
However, what’s particularly interesting is the fact that this very meeting appeared to be the most concerted effort yet by the conservative movement, many of whose adherents view the real estate mogul as a political apostate, to stop Trump.
It remained unclear whether the initiative would prove to be any more successful than all the previous attempts made by the Republican establishment to at least dent Trump’s success. Neither the scorching speech by former GOP nominee Mitt Romney nor the extraordinary indictment by National Review managed to do much to slow the outspoken businessman and real estate mogul. In fact, Trump boasted at his victory party on Tuesday night in Florida that he had won the Sunshine State despite a multi-million dollar negative ad blitz that was aimed at him.
Not to mention that every candidate who tried to take it upon themselves to destroy Trump by hammering him on policy, business deals or vulgar outbursts only succeeded in obliterating their own presidential prospects. This includes Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, Rick Perry, as well as Bobby Jindal. To sum it up, it seems that the GOP is slowly beginning to realize just how unstoppable Trump actually is, and he’s just smiling at them and boasting about how big of a lead he has managed to amass.