An Open Letter To Reince Priebus On Unity

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr Creative Commons
Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr Creative Commons
Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr Creative Commons

Last night, after Ted Cruz dropped his bid for the White House and conservatives were left with the inevitable sinking feeling that Donald Trump was going to represent the GOP in the 2016 Presidential election, Reince Priebus took to Twitter and issue the following statement:


Dear Chairman Priebus,

I understand you have a difficult job to do. As the Chairman of the GOP, your job is to see to it that Republicans get elected. Now that Donald Trump is as you say, the presumptive nominee, it’s time for Republicans to unite behind Trump.

Let me stop you right there for a moment.

It’s one thing if Ted Cruz were the presumptive nominee. Or Marco Rubio. Hell, even John Kasich or Jeb Bush. But to say that there needs to be unity around a candidate who has shown almost zero interest in the principles of conservatism or liberty is absurd. To say people should rally around a man who has spent the better part of his life cozying up to and supporting Democrats is to ask people to betray their most closely held beliefs and values.

The problem is, sir, Donald Trump did not come out of nowhere. He was making waves back in 2011, flirting with running for President and doing damage even back then with his nutty crusade to prove President Obama was born in Kenya. That would have been an opportune moment to tell Donald Trump, “We don’t want people like you in our party.”

Unfortunately, it did not happen. Conservative organizations kept inviting him to speak and the GOP as a whole, winked and nodded at the nonsense that spewed from his mouth. You were content to just let him roam free instead of getting him into a cage where he belonged.


That was a big mistake. 

As the last four years have gone by, Republicans were optimistic about 2016 and the prospects in the general election. Everybody knew there would be a good deal of candidates to choose from. A deep field of qualified candidates ready to do the job on day one.

And then there was Donald Trump.

Almost immediately, he started making waves, alluding to third party or independent runs, saying he would make such decisions after determining how “fair” the party was to him.

It was at that moment, Chairman Priebus, you should have said, “Donald, we don’t take kindly to threats around here. If you want to run on another party ticket or run as an independent, go right ahead.” Instead, you flew to New York City (almost as if he summoned you) and had him sign some worthless pledge that for your purposes, was all that was necessary.

Another mistake.

You probably assumed as many of us did, Trump would implode. That he would do or say something so absurd, it would torpedo his candidacy. He did do those things. He did say crazy things. Yet it did not matter. And even if it did, there was nothing you could do about it. You thought your work was done after he signed the pledge.

Now, you want unity. I am sorry sir, but I cannot in good conscience do that. I am not going to unify behind a man who attacks veterans like John McCain and claims to love veterans (by the way, perhaps you can ask Donald about all the money he raised for veterans groups, many of which that still haven’t gotten their money). I will not unify behind a man who flirted with 9/11 conspiracy theorists and blamed President Bush for the 9/11 attacks. I am not going to unify behind  a man who accuses Ted Cruz’s father of being linked to the assassination of a United States President (JFK).


I will not unify behind a man who says women should be punished if they have abortions should they be illegal. I will not unify behind a man who thinks high tariffs and taxes is good for our economy. I will not unify behind a man who refuses to examine the growing problem with Social Security and Medicare. I will not unify behind a man who refuses to defend our greatest Middle East ally, Israel. I refuse to unify behind a man who would have members of our military commit war crimes under the threat of punishment from our Commander In Chief.

The man is an antithesis to all things Republican and conservative. I will not unify behind a man that goes against so much of what I believe in, just because he is the presumptive GOP nominee.


Jay Caruso



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