Retire NeverTrump

 

I was one of the more persistent and vocal NeverTrump people on Ricochet leading up to the election so I think I have the street cred to write this.

It’s time to retire the NeverTrump label.  It was a useful label during the election cycle because it was a clear way on the center-right to identity as people who had made the still reasonable decision not to vote for Trump.  However, I see a variety of problems with its continued use, including:

  1. It signals that you are inflexible and closed-minded.  By persisting in using the label, you’re telling others that no matter what Trump does in his first administration, you won’t vote for him if he runs again in 2020.
  2. It’s already being used for virtual signaling and moral preening here on Ricochet. No one likes that sort of behavior.  I continue to reject the argument that not voting for Trump was de facto morally preening self-righteousness, but now I’m actually seeing it being specifically used for that purpose . I was  clearly wrong about that at least in certain cases.
  3. It’s an unproductive and unnecessary tribal division for the center-right and Ricochet.  I also don’t like the idea of staking out a position where I’m telling people who voted for Trump that I stand waiting to judge them when Trump does something silly or awful and we know that will happen.  I also don’t like the behavior that I’m seeing on the Trump voting side essentially reading me out of the center-right because I didn’t vote for Trump.  It should be self-evident that this is bad behavior not just from an interpersonal standpoint, but as a political one as well.

I’m back to using the term classical liberal as my primary self-label. NeverTrump served a useful and honorable purpose during the election cycle, but I can’t see any usefulness for it now.  I still think he’ll, shall we say, underperform as president, but I could be wrong and end up voting for him in 2020 if he decides to run again. That alone makes the NeverTrump label a poor fit for me and it should for you also.

(She’s gone, right? Gone gone? We’re done with her? Right? Right!?!)

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  1. Christian Speicher Inactive
    Christian Speicher
    @ChristianSpeicher

    Thank you so very much Publius!

    I was a part time bystander and mostly absentee in the #NeverTrump ‘intramural skirmish’.

    For the grace of God, let their be unity and constructive dialogue again.

    Otherwise there is really no reason to be here together at all.

    #CalExit for example has to me much more attraction and topicality than #NeverreelectPresidentelectTrump.

    • #1
  2. Hartmann von Aue Member
    Hartmann von Aue
    @HartmannvonAue

    I have to agree. The term has served its purpose. He’s gone and gotten himself elected- without our help- so let’s give him a chance.

    • #2
  3. A-Squared Inactive
    A-Squared
    @ASquared

    Meh. I was not a NeverTrumper, but I was consistently critical of Trump, so I lived with the disdain of the Trumpers, ever and reluctant.

    A great poet once said,

    ‘Cause everybody’s gotta have somebody to look down on
    Who they can feel better than at any time they please
    Someone doin’ somethin’ dirty decent folks can frown on
    If you can’t find nobody else, then help yourself to me

    I’m happy to have the Trumpers look down on me if makes them feel better about themselves.

    But yes, if Trump turns out to be a decent President, I may vote for his re-election.

    • #3
  4. Mr. Conservative Inactive
    Mr. Conservative
    @mrconservative

    Absolutlely, Publius.  At this point, is there any real difference between RelunctantTrump and NeverTrump anyway?  We are both stuck with a GOP president that wasn’t our preference (Nevertrumpers just persisted a little longer in their resistance and couldn’t quite take the final step to vote for Trump–although they understood the reasoning of Relunctant Trumpers). And no, I don’t think voting for someone other than Trump disqualifies me from hoping Trump governs as a conservative and trying to steer him in that direction.

    Is there a term that can unify RelunctantTrump and NeverTrumper now that the election is over and Trump won with majorities in both houses?  NUDG-A-CONs?  We want to use our influence to nudge Trump in a conservative direction and are willing to see (and help) Trump govern more rightwardly than some of campaign rhetoric seemed to indicate he might.

    NUDG-A-CONs? What do you think?  Too clunky? Come up with something better then.  I am open to suggestions.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    • #4
  5. MSJL Thatcher
    MSJL
    @MSJL

    The label was created regarding the question of casting a vote for Donald Trump to be President of the United States.  The event is now in the past.  It also doesn’t tell us how to address the future.  Like any administration there are going to be initiatives we like and dislike.  A label like this is not helpful or useful in telling us how to evaluate what’s on the table.  I’m simply not going to reject everything that comes down the road from this Administration simply because it’s pushed by a guy named Trump.

    It’s now time to return to whatever labels we used to describe our political outlook (conservative, skeptic, pro-liberty, conservatorial, etc.) and judge the Trump Administration using the same standards we used with other administrations and policies.

     

    • #5
  6. Sheila S. Inactive
    Sheila S.
    @SheilaS

    I agree wholeheartedly! No, I couldn’t bring myself to take the step of casting a vote for the man, but I understood and respected the reluctant Trumpets. I am so incredibly grateful that Hillary Clinton was defeated. I look to a Donald Trump administration with an open mind and hope for the best for the sake of our country.

    • #6
  7. Joe P Member
    Joe P
    @JoeP

    I wouldn’t say “retire” it. Maybe keep it in stasis for the next 4 years or so in case it’s needed later. Now we get to find out how bad the President Trump will really be. If he’s as bad as the #NeverTrumpers believe, then it may have value in being dusted off. If he’s not as bad, then we probably don’t need it.

    We on the right need to figure out what it is that we’re really going to be about going forward. Many people were expecting that discussion to take place in the context of a Trump loss; it still needs to happen now that there’s been a Trump victory. Either way, that conversation would be best served by not making it center around Donald Trump the man.

    • #7
  8. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    Why stop now?  The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed.  They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election.  Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn.  So why should they hide now?  Own that stuff.  It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition.  No reason for them to hide now.

    • #8
  9. MSJL Thatcher
    MSJL
    @MSJL

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    Recalling the many debates on the subject on this Website, NeverTrumpers were as much harassed if anything.  Comments like this remind us of why we took that position in the first place.  As I mentioned in a comment elsewhere, Trump supporters won and you’re still acting like a victim.  The whole aggrieved populist schtick was tiresome after the Convention and it’s starting to get pathetic after you got the result you wanted.  Time to give it a rest.

    • #9
  10. WI Con Member
    WI Con
    @WICon

    I was a very, then Reluctant Trump voter but rather pleased/at ease at the end to have voted for him vs. the Evil Hag.

    There’s a fair number on the Right and here on Ricochet that would have smugly crowed about ‘we told you so’ had this thing gone south.

    It’s been two days. They should wear that badge a while longer. I also suspect they’ll be sniping from the peanut galley the entire time (while also trying to get positions within the new administration) – no, they get to sit in their soiled diaper a while longer.

    • #10
  11. Mr. Conservative Inactive
    Mr. Conservative
    @mrconservative

    Retire the term (even if wait a few days as @WICON suggests) and then we need a new term that unites both Nevertrump and Relunctantrump–might I suggest NUDG-A-CONS.  Springboarding of Publius, I write on this suggestion, just a few posts up.

    • #11
  12. Fake John/Jane Galt Coolidge
    Fake John/Jane Galt
    @FakeJohnJaneGalt

    MSJL:

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    Recalling the many debates on the subject on this Website, NeverTrumpers were as much harassed if anything. Comments like this remind us of why we took that position in the first place. As I mentioned in a comment elsewhere, Trump supporters won and you’re still acting like a victim. The whole aggrieved populist schtick was tiresome after the Convention and it’s starting to get pathetic after you got the result you wanted. Time to give it a rest.

    Well since I was not a NeverTrump or Trumpster I think I have a little perspective.  Truth is the NeverTrump were way worse.  Obnoxiously worse.  Since they so whole hearty embraced their handle then let them keep it.  Wear it with pride and let it be known they oppose the new President and the will of this country’s people.

    As for me getting the result I wanted?  It is well known that I am a SMOD 2016 guy so I completely lost out.  We are still here and I have to listen to the NeverTrumper cry and the Left protest / march / riot / etc.  If my candidate won we would not be putting up with any of this stuff.  That is why I was for SMOD, it ends all politics forever.

    • #12
  13. skipsul Inactive
    skipsul
    @skipsul

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    The bold text is painting with a broad brush.  Like with the Trump supporters (reluctant and otherwise), most of the NT people were actually quiet about it because they didn’t want to get involved in the acrimony.

    In fact, many on both sides flat out left Ricochet because of the acrimony.

    That battle is over, and just as @publius is offering to bury his hatchet, the rest should do the same.

    The election battle is over, let’s give ourselves a well earned rest – both sides – and set about consolidating things.

    • #13
  14. skipsul Inactive
    skipsul
    @skipsul

    Fake John/Jane Galt: Truth is the NeverTrump were way worse. Obnoxiously worse.

    It depends on when you are talking about.  There were times when the NT side was flat out rude and antagonizing (I could go through the flagging history on that), there were other times when T side was doing the same.

    Settling scores now, though, is needless.

    • #14
  15. Mr. Conservative Inactive
    Mr. Conservative
    @mrconservative

    skipsul:

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    The bold text is painting with a broad brush. Like with the Trump supporters (reluctant and otherwise), most of the NT people were actually quiet about it because they didn’t want to get involved in the acrimony.

    In fact, many on both sides flat out left Ricochet because of the acrimony.

    That battle is over, and just as @publius is offering to bury his hatchet, the rest should do the same.

    The election battle is over, let’s give ourselves a well earned rest – both sides – and set about consolidating things.

    I bet most never Trumper’s are like me: they cannot wait to be proven they were wrong about Trump. If he governs more conservatively than he campaigned,  we are in with both feet. what’s wrong with that?

    • #15
  16. PJ Inactive
    PJ
    @PJ

    I think it’s useful as a historical artifact.  I.e., I may mention that I was NeverTrump to show where I’m coming from when I make an argument (as often as not to say I hope I was wrong about him).  But the key word is “was.”  Continuing to be NeverTrump at this point is like being NeverMonday.  It’s coming, like it or not.

    • #16
  17. Mike-K Member
    Mike-K
    @

    Joe P: Now we get to find out how bad the President Trump will really be.

    It’s about time the NeverTrumpers join humanity again. I see some are still reluctant, which I consider moral preening. The guy has a chance to undo a lot of harm. I think he probably will.

     

    I also think the NeverTrump image has harmed this site as I am not the only one who has noticed and commented on it. If you want Republican subscribers, you might try to avoid antagonizing us. I voted for Nixon twice. How about you ? Three times if you count Governor.

    • #17
  18. Trinity Waters Inactive
    Trinity Waters
    @TrinityWaters

    As I was involved in some of the so-called acrimony, here’s my take, post-election.

    When the fight was on to stop Satan, I was puzzled by the failure of some to fully engage.  The GOP has a long and not proud tradition of circular firing squads, and I mistakenly thought those days were over, given the grievous harm Obama inflicted on our country.  So, my tolerance was tested, and it failed a few times, but that was due to those I perceived as remaining on the periphery of an existential battle.  Sunshine soldiers and all that came to mind.

    So, now that the battle is over, and we prevailed by God’s gracious blessing of our nation yet one more time, I’m perfectly willing to join in productive bonhomie with all here to discuss how we proceed into the future, which policies are most desirable and the most important to prioritize during our at least two year hegemonic control of our government, and certainly to keep a watchful eye on Trump and his entire administrative branch.

    Entropy rules. We must fight continuously and add energy to our political realm in order to stop the agents of decay.  Although temporarily neutered, even today we see them out in the streets fomenting havoc, trying to lure us into reaching across the aisle.  Yikes!  Thankfully we aren’t saddled with the guy who turned that into an art form, McCain.

    I’m done with labels.  Peace, Ricochetti!

    • #18
  19. Mike-K Member
    Mike-K
    @

    Food for thought from Instapundit just now.

    The 70-year-old Republican nominee took his time walking from the green room toward the stage. He stopped to chat with the waiters, service workers, police officers, and other convention staffers facilitating the event. There were no selfies, no glad-handing for votes, no trailing television cameras. Out of view of the press, Trump warmly greets everyone he sees, asks how they are, and, when he can, asks for their names and what they do.

    “I am blown away!” said one worker, an African American man who asked for anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak to the press. “The man I just saw there talking to people is nothing like what I’ve seen, day in and day out, in the news.”

    • #19
  20. skipsul Inactive
    skipsul
    @skipsul

    Trinity Waters: our at least two year hegemonic control of our government

    And this time we don’t have a Jim Jeffords to jump ship like we did in 2001.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Jeffords

    • #20
  21. JamesAtkins Member
    JamesAtkins
    @JamesAtkins

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their all egiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    Dude, as a NeverTrumper, it was never my intention to “destroy Trump”. I simply could not support/vote for someone I thought was unqualified to be POTUS. He has been fairly elected, as is going to be MY POTUS, so as far as I’m concerned NeverTrumper is dead, and I will support MY POTUS. G-d bless President elect Trump, and give him the strength and wisdom to lead this great nation to a prosperous and peaceful future.

    • #21
  22. JamesAtkins Member
    JamesAtkins
    @JamesAtkins

    Mr. Conservative:

    skipsul:

    Fake John/Jane Galt:Why stop now? The #NeverTrumpers maintained their cause to destroy Trump after the nominee process was completed. They continued their efforts to get Hillary elected and harass his supporters through out the general election. Given their passion to destroy Trump and his supporters, I can only assume they continue to plan to undermine him at ever turn. So why should they hide now? Own that stuff. It is only honest for them to acknowledge their allegiance to the opposition. No reason for them to hide now.

    The bold text is painting with a broad brush. Like with the Trump supporters (reluctant and otherwise), most of the NT people were actually quiet about it because they didn’t want to get involved in the acrimony.

    In fact, many on both sides flat out left Ricochet because of the acrimony.

    That battle is over, and just as @publius is offering to bury his hatchet, the rest should do the same.

    The election battle is over, let’s give ourselves a well earned rest – both sides – and set about consolidating things.

    I bet most never Trumper’s are like me: they cannot wait to be proven they were wrong about Trump. If he governs more conservatively than he campaigned, we are in with both feet. what’s wrong with that?

    Amen brother

    • #22
  23. Publius Inactive
    Publius
    @Publius

    Mike-K: He stopped to chat with the waiters, service workers, police officers, and other convention staffers facilitating the event. There were no selfies, no glad-handing for votes, no trailing television cameras. Out of view of the press, Trump warmly greets everyone he sees, asks how they are, and, when he can, asks for their names and what they do.

    This is another really big upside for Hillary Clinton not wining.  She has a well documented history of being positively nasty to staff and security people and I hated the idea of inflicting her on the White House staff and the USSS agents, officers, and other professionals.  I’m glad that the early information on Trump that he’s not that way.

     

    • #23
  24. skipsul Inactive
    skipsul
    @skipsul

    Publius:

    Mike-K: He stopped to chat with the waiters, service workers, police officers, and other convention staffers facilitating the event. There were no selfies, no glad-handing for votes, no trailing television cameras. Out of view of the press, Trump warmly greets everyone he sees, asks how they are, and, when he can, asks for their names and what they do.

    This is another really big upside for Hillary Clinton not wining. She has a well documented history of being positively nasty to staff and security people and I hated the idea of inflicting her on the White House staff and the USSS agents, officers, and other professionals. I’m glad that the early information on Trump that he’s not that way.

    White House staffer memories are long too.  I had a tour there in 1989, when I was in 8th grade, and the tour guide still had nothing but unkind words for Maimie Eisenhower for selling off the accumulated antique furniture, and high praises for Jackie Kennedy for getting a lot of it back.

    • #24
  25. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    I have to be honest, I always felt the nevertrump folks were cutting off their collective noses to spite their long,pouty faces. Because my view of Trump was appreciative of his core ideas–strong,secure borders, better, more sensible tax system, less onerous regulations, and constitutional federal justices, including, of course, the Supremes–which were diametrically opposite of Clinton, I could never understand the position that would, without doubt, have no other consequence if successful than to elect Clinton. I also nearly left this site on many occasions because of what seemed to me to be complete bias by the editors, all of whom were nevertrumpers, and the podcasters, most of whom were nevers.

    Although I agree that the  time to move on is rapidly approaching, it still seems a little awkward and soon to forget the condescension poured out by some. Just the calling of Trump supporters Trumpkins was meant to be and was indeed dripping with derision. So @publius, I appreciate your effort here, and the time may be right for you, but I am still seeing attitude from the nevers in their posting that makes it not the time for me. I still am mistrustful and not quite ready to grant immunity, mainly because most nevers don’t even want it.

    • #25
  26. OmegaPaladin Moderator
    OmegaPaladin
    @OmegaPaladin

    @skipsul

    In fact, many on both sides flat out left Ricochet because of the acrimony.

    That was definitely part of my reason for leaving.  Part of it was a general feeling of disgust with politics and how it was affecting people – me certainly included.

     

     

     

    • #26
  27. Instugator Thatcher
    Instugator
    @Instugator

    Publius: (She’s gone, right? Gone gone? We’re done with her? Right? Right!?!)

    Ding Dong the Witch is Dead.

    • #27
  28. RyanFalcone Member
    RyanFalcone
    @RyanFalcone

    YES!!! It is time to put all that behind us. There is only one response for Never Trumpers (like I was)….”Trump is our President and whatever misgivings I had, he at least pays lip service to generally conservative ideals and that is what got him into office. It is my DUTY to hold him accountable and encourage him towards those ends!”

    Also for the Trumpets, it is time to show some humility. Realize that Hillary lost as much as Trump won. The Dems will quite easily win in 2020 unless Trump captures the NeverTrumpers and others that have been left behind by the R’s. Anything stupid you say from here on out WILL be used against you.

    We all need to grow up and focus on problems and solutions not enemies and hurt feelings.

    • #28
  29. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    skipsul:

    Fake John/Jane Galt: Truth is the NeverTrump were way worse. Obnoxiously worse.

    It depends on when you are talking about. There were times when the NT side was flat out rude and antagonizing (I could go through the flagging history on that), there were other times when T side was doing the same.

    Settling scores now, though, is needless.

    “What difference, at this point, does it make?”

    • #29
  30. Theodoric of Freiberg Member
    Theodoric of Freiberg
    @TheodoricofFreiberg

    Publius:It’s time to retire the NeverTrump label.

    I agree 100%. I was a #HoldNoseVoteTrump guy. I’m dropping that now. Actions speak much louder than words. Let’s see what he and the GOP congress do from here and what the results are. That’s really all that matters.

    • #30
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