Mitt Romney, the former Next President of the United States, has declared that he can't abide presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump's "trickle down racism", so he is going to write in another person's name on his ballot.
First, I'm sure Donald is quite shaken not having Mr. Romney's endorsement.
Among Donald's coterie of followers, Mr. Romney is what is known as a "cuckservative", just another right-wing politician who couldn't deliver the goods on the conservative Utopia, a failure which Donald will rectify.
But, of course, the opinion of Donald's minions doesn't interest me much. What's more interesting is Mr. Romney himself.
Do not for a moment think that he has gotten religion, and seen what a disgrace the GOP has become. As the picture headlining this piece reminds us, Mr. Romney went hat in hand to Donald for his endorsement in 2012. This after Donald had launched himself into the political arena with his hunting for President Obama's birth certificate. Mr. Romney knew what Donald was, and didn't care; in a close race with the most talented politician of the last fifty years, any help he could get he'd accept.
Based on that history, the question has to be: Would Mr. Romney be attacking Donald if the GOP nominee were doing better in the polls? Frankly, it hasn't been the best two weeks of Donald's excellent adventure. It all began to fall apart when he conducted his bigoted attack against the judge overseeing the Trump University lawsuit, who is of Mexican descent. It continued as Democrats, eschewing their usual couched terms, launched scorched earth attacks on him, the kind of attacks he himself loves to conduct on Twitter. The problem is that Donald is bringing a Twitter app to a mass media fight backed by the apparatus of a major party. His parries of Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren have been not up to his usual standards, making him revealed to be what he is: a thin skinned petty bully who squeals when a blow lands.
The only reason Mr. Romney feels it safe to launch his desultory attack on Donald is because it's becoming increasingly evident that Donald is not well. As evidence, I present this:
That's right, folks. The GOP's nominee for the man who will have access to the nuclear codes spent part of his rally today hugging a flag.
It's gotten so bad that Meg Whitman, she who got shellacked in her run for California governor by Jerry Brown, is bruiting supporting and raising money for Mrs. Clinton. Even Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that he could see himself withdrawing his endorsement of Donald.
Do I think the GOP will defect en masse as the looming disaster becomes impossible to ignore? No, not really. But there is disunity, which doesn't bode well for a party which will be confronted with a popular sitting President campaigning for his successor.
But, back to Mitt. He could have done the brave thing and said that for the good of the country he'd put aside partisanship and support Mrs. Clinton, as the thought of Donald getting anywhere near power was a thought not to be entertained. But, of course, he didn't. The stench of Donald's embrace lingers on four years later. Mr. Romney, who showed himself to be a feckless poseur in 2012, hasn't grown. He's merely afraid of the existential threat Donald poses to his party, not the same threat he poses to his country and the world. He may comfort himself with the idea that by writing in a name on his ballot he can keep his conscience clean. But he's deluding himself. Refusal to actively resist Donald by supporting his opponent is condoning the possibility that he could become President. His grandchildren and great-grandchildren won't ask him which cipher he wrote in on his ballot, but why he didn't use his influence to save both his party and his country.
However, if you look at Mitt Romney and most other Republicans and their histories, the answer to that question won't surprise anyone.