For a group called “Free the Delegates,” one humiliating defeat was not enough. Their efforts to get state delegates to unbind themselves and vote for a candidate other than Donald Trump were unsuccessful, to say the least. Put another way, they failed to even register as a presence in Cleveland, despite weeks of hearty boasts about how many delegates they had converted to the cause. The Republican National Convention, as it turned out, was a much less divided affair than its Democratic counterpart in Philadelphia.
But yeah, they’re back.
On Sunday, the group announced that they were sending a petition to RNC members all over the country calling for an emergency party meeting. There, the group hopes to convince party leaders to drop Donald Trump as the nominee and use the party rules to install a suitable replacement. Those rules, which were publicized last week by Republican insiders who thought Trump might drop out on his own, empower RNC leaders to replace the nominee under certain circumstances. Those circumstances – “death, declination, or otherwise” – are read by Free the Delegates as an opportunity. Namely, they think “otherwise” gives them the go ahead to revoke the will of the voters.
According to members of the group, Trump’s behavior over the last two weeks gives the party cause for a coup. Specifically, his feud with the Khan family and his temporary refusal to endorse Paul Ryan for re-election. Of course, his slipping poll numbers are more likely to worry RNC leaders than anything Trump actually does or says. It’s because of those numbers – not anything else – that Trump finds himself strangely vulnerable to these machinations.
“We believe it will not be difficult to obtain the necessary signatures,” said Regina Thomson, the executive director of Free the Delegates.
As reported by the Washington Post, her hubris is without foundation. The paper reached out to various RNC members and found no one who expressed support for mutiny.
Beyond everything else that’s ridiculous about this plot, it’s simply too late. These people don’t understand the extraordinary backlash that would result from their meddling. It’s not an exaggeration to wonder if it wouldn’t be the end of the Republican Party as a viable force in national politics. They seem to think Trump’s supporters will just shrug and say, “Welp, whatever you say, we’ll vote for anyone with an R next to their name.”
No, these imbeciles are helping one person and one person only: Hillary Clinton. And if there constant interference results in her election, they will be held responsible.