I understand the desire to take part in and attempt to chip away at the Trump phenomenon. I do it as well. But no amount of articles, speeches, TV ads, debate interactions, fights on social media, or protests will slow down the “Trump train”. In fact, many times, the large-scale actions only serve to increase his popularity and bolster his self-described status as an outsider.
Take for instance the drama surrounding Trump on Saturday morning in Arizona. Yes, his own rally would have received press, because they love to cover him. But the roadblock protesting garnered much more attention than would have been given to him naturally. It only strengthened the resolve of his current supporters, and might have added new ones. Beyond that, it was a invasion of rights. Do I like Trump? Absolutely not. Do I support the rights of individuals to protest? Yes, I do. But stopping traffic and keeping people from their freedoms, whether they were going to the rally or not, crossed the line. The thing about freedom is that I have it, and the sides I disagree with do, too.
The same was seen in the desire to stop Trump at the GOP debates. It was always obvious to the debate audience, at least those who weren’t sold out for Trump, that he lacked any kind of substance. His policy positions were anything but fleshed out, his descriptions soared every which way, and his responses to rebuttals contained mostly insults. A serious contender for the presidency? No. But placing the hope for a Trump takedown on Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio was weak at best. Cruz and Rubio made good points against Trump, but their effect lasted only as long as the debate did. Yet, before each debate, the hope of “maybe this is the night where he goes down!” would ring through the anti-Trump crowd. As we can see by the current delegate count, that wish never came true.
Don’t get me wrong – I’ll continue speaking out against Trump and his vitriolic protesters. There is no reason to sit on the sidelines when such a hijack is occurring. But I understand that my words, actions, and the actions of others, no matter how truth-filled they may be, will do nothing to halt the Trump phenomenon. It continues to barrel full steam ahead.
So what is the only thing that will stop Donald Trump? The answer is Hillary Clinton. Trumpmania ends with his loss on election night in November. I don’t support her in the slightest and she will not receive my vote. Contrary to what many in the Trump brigade think, a denial of Trump is not an acceptance of HRC. There are not only two options. But would it be the worst thing for our party if he lost to Hillary? A Trump presidency would sustain his antics, and being a Republican in a President Trump world would only be associated with all of the worst that he and his supporters have offered. On the other hand, a loss to Hillary would cause a crumble in the already shaky GOP base. It may topple, but at this point, our only options are to let if falter and rebuild, or leave it altogether.
With Trump in this race, we’ll continue to see the juvenile Twitter feuds with media personalities and the large-scale protests which receive global attention, but none of it matters. Trump’s support is some of the most secure we’ve ever seen, and it’s here to stay. The only way to stop what we see unfolding before us is at the ballot box. If that doesn’t happen prior to the RNC convention, it will have to take place on election night in November. And that may be the best thing for the party.