Jeff Flake Says He's Open To A Primary Challenge Against Trump If He Can Get Enough Attention


Arizona Senator Jeff Flake was on Meet the Press this morning and talked about 2020:

Via The Hill:

“I do hope that somebody runs on the Republican side other than the president, if nothing else than simply to remind Republicans what conservatism is and what Republicans have traditionally stood for,” he added.

Flake, 55, said if he were to run for president he would do so as a Republican because he “can’t imagine doing anything else.”

I keep seeing this over and over. Conservatism, at least as defined by movement conservatism, has always been a loud minority in the GOP. You can’t have watched GOP politics and not concluded that. The second thing is that somehow Trump is hurting conservatism. I think this is fatuous bullsh**. No sane person who is not writing for the editorial pages of the New York Times or Washington Post has ever thought Trump was conservative. Trump had a lot of conservative support in the election because the winner was going to be either Trump or Hillary Clinton (I hate to trigger people who think that there were more potential winners than two, but there weren’t). Trump has a constituency in the GOP because as much as some folks like to block it out, there is a strong populist and patriotic strain in the GOP that some have mistaken for conservatism rather than traditionalism, Trump, for better or worse, has captured that demographic.

If Flake doesn’t run, who else might be the champion of conservatism?

Anyone mounting a challenge to Trump in a GOP primary would face significant obstacles. Nonetheless, speculation that Trump will see a challenge from his own party has run rampant, with Ohio Gov. John Kasich often mentioned as another possible candidate.

Right. John Kasich is going to save conservatism.

This movement to create a primary challenge for what has so far been a successful, if untidy, presidency is simply unprecedented. Primary challengers for sitting presidents are good for exactly one thing: electing the other party’s candidate. If the trajectory of Trump’s presidency continues, it will collapse due to its own contradictions. If not, we can say hello to President Kamala Harris who will save conservatism just like Jeff Flake will.

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