Ever since Donald Trump got shellacked in Colorado, he has been whining and complaining about the rules of the Republican nomination process. Last week, member Marion Evans has an excellent suggestion for Trump:
One way to deal with gadflies, rogues and bullies is to give them exactly what they want on the theory that they will eventually do themselves in. Since his Colorado debacle, Donald Trump has been arguing that the delegate attribution should reflect the percentage earned by each candidate in each primary/caucus. But under these new “Trump rules,” his total delegate count today would be 564 (table below), well below his official current total of 755.
In the past, I have been critical of GOP establishment schemers who want to change convention rules mid-stream in order to get their desired result (i.e. a nominee who isn’t Senator Ted Cruz or Donald Trump). But the same admonition applies to Trump as well, to the extent he wants to change the nomination rules to suit himself. The basic principle of fairness in any contest is that the rules of the game must not change once play has begun.
Except that Trump wishes the rules changes to be made inconsistently, which is even worse than what the RNC conspirators desire. He is all for proportionate representation in states where he got skunked, but he is perfectly happy with the Florida results, where he won all 99 delegates while only winning 46 percent of the vote, or South Carolina, where he was awarded all 50 delegates while only winning 32.5 percent of the vote. You can’t have it both ways, Donald.
The simple truth is that Trump is in over his head. He lost Colorado because his team failed to show up. Tens of thousands of people showed up and voted in the caucuses … just not for him because his campaign was AWOL. In contrast, Cruz has set up dedicated campaign teams in every state, in some cases, for years, and continues to operate them after the primaries are over in order to snag the actual delegates. This is called playing by the rules.
Until recently, this part of the game eluded Trump’s attention because nobody else was paying attention to it either. There hasn’t been a brokered convention in decades. But Cruz paid attention, and began working on this before anybody thought a brokered convention was likely That says a lot about Cruz’s perspicacity and thoroughness… as well, as Trump’s. These qualities are supremely relevant to the job of president.
I think Trump entered the presidential race on a self-promotional lark and — to his great surprise — found himself winning, mostly because he accidentally tapped into underlying issues such as political correctness and immigration. When he first adopted them, I don’t think he had any clue about their potency.
He is like the dog that caught the car he was chasing; he doesn’t know what to do next.