Normally, you would pity the poor fool who tried to stand between an elected official and his party’s convention. After all, the media is there, and politicians flock to media like moths to a flame. Additionally, it is a chance to get in face time with donors and state party leaders. Plus, there are parties, free food, and booze.
However, this particular convention will probably feature the prime time coronation of Trump as the Republican nominee, complete with speeches from Trump and Trump surrogates. Accordingly, many Republican elected officials are doing their best to discreetly clear the blast radius. The latest is Utah rep Mia Love:
Love, who has long been viewed as a rising star inside a party seeking more diversity, was given a prime-time speaking slot at the 2012 Republican Convention. But The Salt Lake Tribune reported that she would instead visit Israel with other lawmakers and campaign for re-election during the convention next month.
“I don’t see any upsides to it,” Love said Friday, according to the Tribune. “I don’t see how this benefits the state.”
Love, who will also give up her seat as a delegate, joins the ranks of Republican lawmakers and former GOP nominees who are flatly skipping the convention. But she did not say Friday whether she was skipping it because of Donald Trump, nor has she said if she will vote for him in November.
It makes sense for Love in particular to skip the convention. Trump is hated in Utah, even among Republicans. Even if Trump wins the state in the general it will be due to greater hatred of Hillary Clinton. Anyone who is seen embracing Trump too enthusiastically will be in danger in Utah.
Still it will be interesting to see who makes themselves visible at the convention and who makes themselves discreetly unavailable.