With the very real possibility that Donald Trump will be the Republican Party’s nominee for President of these United States, it is appropriate to revisit “party unity” and why it is an impossible pipe dream. We will never have party unity and we should not desire it. We should instead embrace our divisions.
I am a Republican. I will never vote for Donald Trump, for many reasons I have explained in the past. I will, however, support every other Republican on the ballot. As I look up and down my ballot, every single candidate for offices other than President are people I can not only vote for, but enthusiastically vote for in the general election – even if my favored candidates do not win the primary. That has not always been the case, and it may not be the case in future elections, but in the 2016 election every Republican (other than Trump) can count on my vote in November.
But I will never vote for Donald Trump. Attempting to berate me, shame me, attack me or bully me into supporting Trump not only will not work but will only strengthen my resolve to oppose him and increase the volume of my opposition to him. That is how it went down in 2008 with John McCain, and you better believe that is how it will go down in 2016 if the Republican Party nominates Trump.
And let me inform you of a little secret: There will always be candidates that people within the party refuse to support or even openly oppose. It has always been that way and will always be that way. That does not mean they are disloyal or bad Republicans. It simply means that they cannot support certain candidates on principle. And here is another little secret: That phenomenon exists for Democrats as well.
Furthermore, there will always be strenuous, sharp disagreements within the Republican Party. There always have been and always will be. That is what it means to have a “big tent.” The very definition of a “big tent” is that we have people of all kinds of ideological commitments within that tent! If we do not want these disagreements, then we are going to have to shrink the tent, pushing out either conservatives or moderates. You do not see very many open public fights within the Libertarian or Green parties, but look at how many votes they get compared to Republicans and Democrats.
So let’s please stop being butthurt little crybabies whining about disagreements and fights within the party. Instead, let’s look at where we are unified and see where we can move forward in a positive way. Every single second we spend whining about divisions is a wasted second we could be using to advance a positive agenda where we are united, and electing candidates we all support.