Any bets on how far into 2023 we get before someone renames the news cycle the Trump Cycle? Or how long until CNN creates CNNTRUMP+ — All Trump, All the Time? I give it until February. As the refugees who migrated to the MSM from the island in Lord of the Flies don loincloths, hoot, holler, and jump up and down around the latest bonfire, in this case, Donald Trump’s taxes, a far more intriguing question has emerged for serious politics watchers: will Trump run as a third-party candidate?

Trump posted a link on his Truth Social account to an article in American Greatness:

The piece by Dan Gelernter, entitled “The Coming Split,” asks this question:

What should we do when a majority of Republicans want Trump, but the Republican Party says we can’t have him? Do we knuckle under and vote for Ron DeSantis because he would be vastly better than any Democrat?

Gelernter argues no, accusing the GOP of giving Republican voters a “non-choice” between candidates who have already been selected for the nomination. He likens it to how the Democrats froze out Sanders in 2016. Gelernter also characterizes the two-party system as one that effectively keeps the electorate from actually having a say in how the country is run. As someone who has Mitt Romney as a senator and has watched Mitch McConnell slowly chew up the GOP like a giant tortoise in the zoo munching on lettuce, I would agree that Gelernter has a point and would add that too many Republicans in Congress have joined the Uniparty to save the sacred status-quo and preserve their own sacred status.

Gelernter also points to the massive turnouts at Trump rallies and the fact that those who swim in the warm and murky waters inside the beltway are oblivious to the thoughts, cares, and struggles of the average American. Hell, Mike Lee told me that years ago. Gelernter writes:

Our best talking-heads and pundits have argued for years that it’s better to win with a bad candidate than to lose with a good one. I used to believe it myself. But look at the results: Until Trump became president, it never even occurred to me that an elected politician could actually do what he’d promised. We’ve been acclimatized to failure, fraud, and theft by the politics of expediency. Year after year, our only choices are “Big Government A” (GOP) or “Big Government B” (Democrat). I used to think Republicans were at least a little more restrained in their spending than the Democrats. But now it’s just clear they spend our money on different things: Democrats give our money to welfare infrastructure (and the drug industry). Republicans give our money to the military-industrial complex (and the drug industry).

He wraps up the piece by acknowledging that Trump would probably not win as a third-party candidate but that he would vote for Trump anyway, invoking the name of the above-mentioned McConnell as one of the reasons.

Trump — warts, comments, tweets, and all — met and exceeded many conservatives’ expectations. He did some outstanding things as president, and he made an impact, so much so that the MSM continues to sniff at him like Joe Biden on a sorority girl’s hair or Hunter in the Kraft Parmesan Cheese warehouse. Unfortunately, the MSM is determined to craft his legacy using salacious details, real, imagined, or inflated, rather than his actual achievements. And yes, the tainted brand and the constant hype have made some conservatives both wary and weary of when it comes to Trump and a potential third campaign.

And one must ask a very pointed question: Trump does enjoy the limelight. Was the Truth Social post a way to get the base fired up and to get people like me to write columns about him? I know that is heresy and anathema to some readers, but it is a query that needs to be addressed. For that matter, is Trump trying to force the GOP’s hand by intimating that it is him or no one?

Also germane to the conversation is an important fact. Trump, running on a third-party ticket would split the conservative vote. People would peel off from the GOP to support Trump because whoever the opponent ends up being will be a “swamp monster” with a new, funny nickname. Such a situation would give the presidency to the Democrats. And that is a simple reality, like it or not. That is arguably the physics of the upcoming election. And all of the flags, stickers, and signs in the world will not change that.

And so the fight for the GOP candidacy is on, now with an implicit threat that Trump might well take his act and supporters on the road if he is displeased with the convention results.

I remember when Ron Paul made a run for the presidency in 2012. I was on the air at the time, and my co-host and I agreed that we liked much of what Paul had to say but we were both iffy about his foreign and military policies. I invited listeners to give me their perspectives on those issues. Sort of like one of Crowder’s “Change My Mind” segments.

And then the beatings commenced. I was un-American, not a true conservative. I hated the country, I didn’t know what I was walking about, etc. None of those things were true. I just wanted a Paul supporter to explain his or her point of view. I would venture to say that there were not that many true Paul believers in the listening audience, but they made it sound like thousands were massing in the parking lot with pitchforks and torches. In their minds, one was either pro-Paul or anti-Paul. There could be no discussion. Not unlike what we are seeing now.

While I find the self-serving antics of McConnell and company to be abhorrent, I am equally reticent to embrace a candidate through the “cult of personality.” With that said, it is well past time for the GOP to take Trump and his supporters seriously and have an honest talk with him about how he might help shape the future of the party and country.

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