The Republican establishment has declared war on Donald Trump. Ronald Reagan would be disgusted.
This is not about who should win the nomination. In fact, I support Ted Cruz. He best represents conservative ideals. And I was highly critical of Donald Trump’s attack on the First Amendment in the wake of the thwarted jihad mass shooting at our American Freedom Defense Initiative, or AFDI, free-speech event in Garland, Texas, last May. This was because if someone doesn’t have a fundamental understanding of the importance of the First Amendment, he is disqualified to be president.
But the RINO war on Trump is not based on that, or any principle. The war that has been declared within our own ranks against Donald Trump is repulsive in the extreme, and getting worse by the day.
The has-been rag National Review, always eager to read people out of the conservative movement, dedicated an entire issue to attacking Trump, with the cover featuring a list of the heavy hitters on the right who were lining up to bash Trump. They have no right to be heavy hitters on the right. Whether you like Trump or not, it is wonderful that our tent is so genuinely diverse intellectually that he could be the front-runner. It is to our credit.
After that, the Weekly Standard, like the good little goose steppers they are, followed with an even more vicious attack on the Republican front-runner. The Weekly Standard’s hit piece was illustrated with a photo of Trump as King Kong, as Weekly Standard Editor William Kristol tweeted smug and vapid apologies to King Kong: “Of course unfair to King Kong, who’s a noble and tragic figure.”
The Standard depicted Trump as King Kong, but it’s acting like Godzilla. Who died and made William Kristol king of the right? He is following the dictum of Walter Ulbricht, general secretary of the East German Communist Party: If the people don’t vote the way you want, “Change the people.”
The irony is that what the GOP establishment is accusing Trump of doing is exactly what it is doing. How imperial and autocratic of the establishment right to dictate to the people who they can and cannot support. Its contempt for the people is anathema to who we are: Ronald Reagan always stood fast and insisted that we don’t eat our own. Remember his 11th Commandment: Thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow Republican. Remember also that the Republican establishment hated Reagan, too, and tried to beat him with former President Ford, and even to accept Ford as his “co-president” once Reagan won the nomination.
Today, the establishment Republicans are once again setting off suicide bombs. How often have conservatives swallowed that jagged little pill and supported the clown that the establishment put up? I have permanent dent marks in my nostrils from holding my nose to support John McCain for president. That was painful. And so was Romney, a 20th-century candidate in a 21st-century fight. But we did it, because he was the party’s pick. But now the people are picking.
The left, not surprisingly, is loving it: The New York Times crowed, “Trump’s war on Fox News isn’t just a media spat. It’s part of a war for control against the power structure of the G.O.P. – whose appeals to cultural anxieties he has hijacked and dialed up to 11 – and thus against Fox as an extension of it. (The bizarro-world possibility of a Fox News at odds with the Republican nominee, should Mr. Trump win, would be one more weird twist in a campaign full of them.)” Trump’s war on Fox? What about Fox’s war on Trump? It’s supposed to be a news organization holding a debate. Yet its press release attacking Trump was snarky, baiting, adolescent – unworthy of what it claims to be.
Fox News and Trump’s bête noire, Megyn Kelly, have jumped the shark. The love fest Tuesday night between Kelly and Michael Moore pulled back the curtain on the RINO news network. It was jarring. My tweet referring to the “love affair” between Kelly and Moore and adding that Fox News “hates Trump more than it loves its own integrity” was retweeted hundreds of times. Megyn has Michael Moore on her show? By way of comparison, Megyn Kelly has never once had me on – even in the wake of the assassination attempt in Garland, Texas, and the Boston jihad plot to behead me for my “blasphemy.”
Moore gushed over Kelly: “You have to play ball with this network. Donald Trump today said, ‘I’m not playing ball with this network.’ That’s a historic moment! […] You’ve made this happen. You’ve caused a crisis upstairs.” He added: “God bless you, Megyn Kelly!”
Megyn Kelly is angling to be the next evening news anchor on one of the big three networks. She aspires to be the next Diane Sawyer (the new haircut is a dead giveaway).
All that was bad enough, but it came out soon afterward that Fox News plans to give an anti-Trump Muslim supremacist a platform for her hatred. Nabeela Noor has smeared Trump as a bigot and likened him to Adolf Hitler. Fox needs to feature an Islamic supremacist in a debate? Really? Why not Ibn Warraq or Robert Spencer? Why not, finally, have a true scholar on jihadic doctrine instead of a soldier for Islamic supremacism?
Bottom line: Trump was right to pull out of the debate. The GOP is imploding. If the GOP establishment and the RINOs had gone after the Democrats the way they’re going after Donald Trump, we would have been on a winning streak this past decade. They have done this for years to my colleagues and me. But when they try it with Trump, this is a target too big to ignore. The curtain has been pulled back: Average Republicans now see what the GOP establishment has been doing to them for decades.
The good news is that this controversy has exposed Fox News definitively and could bring down the clueless, corrupt and compromised Republican establishment. Conservatives and the principled right have no media outlet – none. Is there not a conservative billionaire who can buy HLN or some failing liberal news outlet and relieve our abject misery? And while I endorse Cruz, you can rest assured that if Donald Trump gets the nomination, I will support him. Because that’s what we do. That’s who we are.
The establishment Republicans piling on Trump – Roger Ailes, William Kristol, Glenn Beck, Erick Erickson, Andrew McCarthy, John Podhoretz and the rest – are yesterday’s men. They will be left behind as history steamrolls over the failed, weak and corrupt Republican Party they are trying desperately to shore up.
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.