LTE: A Response to “Why the Right Must Stop Trump”

After reading your piece entitled “The Right Must Stop Trump,” I am in agreement. If Donald Trump (or should I say Drumpf) is selected as the nominee of the GOP, the party as we know it will cease to exist, and Trump’s populist movement will have hijacked the party. I lose more and more hope each day that something can be done to stop the Trump train. To preface this response, I am a huge Marco Rubio supporter. However, after the results of Super Tuesday, Rubio’s delegate count pales in comparison to that of Donald Trump and even that of Ted Cruz. This is where I find myself conflicted.

Most pundits are in agreement that the only viable way to stop Trump’s candidacy is to unite the remainder of the Republican base around a sole opposer. Until yesterday, many would have argued that the only worthy candidate is Marco Rubio. Yet now we find ourselves in a pickle. Yesterday, Cruz picked up three more primary wins and many more delegates. While I am still inclined to side with Rubio, the case for Cruz is gaining significant momentum. Cruz has now won four contests, including that of his home state of Texas. On the other hand, Rubio has only captured the Minnesota Caucuses, although he has had strong second-place finishes elsewhere. Further, Rubio is down to Trump by around 20 points in his homestate of Florida, according to recent polls. Many are now making the case that Rubio and Kasich now must both drop out to make way for Cruz to challenge Trump. Another part of this argument is the concept that a Cruz drop-out would not necessarily correlate to a bump in the polls for Rubio. Pundits speculate that Trump could actually gain a large share of Cruz supporters were Cruz to drop out.

However, there is an argument that can be made for Rubio. That argument rests in the Republican establishment’s apparent hatred of Ted Cruz. If the race for the nomination were to come down between Trump and Cruz, many argue that the establishment would tend to fall in line behind Trump. We cannot let this happen. For this reason, Rubio must be the Trump alternative as he is obviously loved by the establishment. Further, Rubio differs from Trump far more clearly than Cruz does on key issues. Both Trump and Cruz are typically considered “outsiders.” So, if a voter doesn’t want one of these “outsiders,” there must be an alternative. We find this alternative in Rubio. Further, Cruz was anticipating huge wins across the South on Super Tuesday. Although he secured his home state and neighboring Oklahoma, he failed to deliver elsewhere. If Cruz cannot win in the deep South, where can he win? Conversely, Rubio has great electorate appeal in many of the upcoming contests.

Bottom line: There can be only one. As long as both Cruz and Rubio stay in the race, Trump will cruise to victory.

Conor Lemanowicz

CSOM ’19.

Featured Image by Andrew Harnick / AP Photo