As a lifelong Republican, it seems mighty strange to watch a Hillary Clinton political ad on TV and find myself nodding in agreement.
Not in agreement to vote for her, mind you, but because her campaign is making viable points about Donald J. Trump being unfit to be President.
I’m mighty tempted to leave the Republican Party. Which is sad, because during every presidential election since 1984 I’ve voted for the GOP candidate.
Even though I’ve never voted straight-ticket, for the POTUS spot I’ve always cast a ballot for the Republican nominee, simply because that political party has most closely reflected my worldview and belief in limited government.
This year that will likely change, however, due to my suspicion that a wolf in sheep’s clothing has become the top representative of the Republican Party.
Republican voters (actually only a minority of them, due to a crowded primary field) now seem to be pining for a dictator who insults and threatens all who disagree with him. Their hatred for Hillary has clouded their collective judgement into accepting an alternative who appears to be equally detestable to the one they most detest.
As theologian John Piper recently stated: “Though neither candidate should be president, America deserves no better than either. Hence our prayers are for something deeper.”
The strongest argument I hear from Trump supporters (the ones who are otherwise conservatives, at least) is that they’re voting for this candidate because they hope he’d make better Supreme Court picks.
Sorry, but I don’t trust him. His record betrays his speech.
Many of my close friends, my fellow churchgoers, even members of my family, plan to vote this fall for the lesser of two evils. But I refuse to fall into that trap — to vote for lung cancer over heart disease. To be complicit in evil in order to prevent an even greater evil.
Ironically, the Republican establishment that Trump originally claimed to be fighting now welcomes him with open arms. And now I’m becoming dizzy trying to figure out who paid off whom, because Trump is (and has always been) a huge part of the Establishment.
He stuck to a script — an angry script — the final night of the Republican convention. A script certainly not written by someone who is unable to put together a coherent paragraph, much less an entire speech.
In fact, Trump has done everything he could to convince me not to unify behind him. By insulting women. And the disabled. And blacks. And Muslims. And Hispanics ... Trump has never given me a good reason to earn my respect, nor my vote.
It just saddens me that so many religious and political figures I once respected have fallen for a fraud.
The good news is that, from now on, I’ll be triply cautious of anything coming out of the mouths of Tony Perkins. Or Ralph Reed. Or James Dobson. Or Newt Gingrich. Or Sean Hannity. Or Ann Coulter. And the list goes on and on. Because I can never again trust anyone simply on face value. Not even coming from my friends or family.
Besides, the whole “lesser of two evils” argument is faulty as well. As Iowa columnist Steve Deace recently wrote:
“The ‘lesser of two evils’ always will eventually lead you to the evils of two lessors: Illinois’ Republican governor just signed a child-killing mandate into state law. But I’m sure a lot of ‘conservatives’ said that they had to vote for him because the Democrat was so much worse, or something.”
The Trump campaign seems to be largely made up of untruths, such as claims that Ted Cruz was booed off the stage in Cleveland, or that Ben Carson is a child molester, or that Marco Rubio was offered the vice president spot. I cannot in good faith allow myself to vote for a candidate (of either party) who acts the way thin-skinned Trump acts, or who lies like his campaign has lied.
I won’t go so far as to say the GOP be damned. I’m afraid they’re damning themselves ... although I guess there are still three months for something to change.
Stiles is the former editor of Julien’s Jornal and The Weekender. In Wisconsin, there is no party registration; voters choose which party’s primary to vote in at the polls.