As the United States continues to hurtle towards the 2020 election, some state Republican Parties are taking what to many are dramatic steps that in practice, help shore up support for incumbent President Donald Trump. Although two dissenting Republicans have already announced challenges to Trump’s re-election campaign, POLITICO reports that state parties in South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas are all “expected to finalize… cancellations” of 2020 state primary elections “in meetings this weekend, according to three GOP officials who are familiar with the plans.”
There’s a definitely in-place precedent for state parties deciding to cancel primary elections when there’s an incumbent president from their party in the White House. However, we’re long into the world of being able to abandon precedent in the shadow of Trump’s rise — it’s not as though other commanders-in-chief have seen controversies like them apparently using a Sharpie to mark across an official hurricane track map rather than admit they made a mistake when talking about where the storm was headed.
Both of Trump’s so-far declared longshot challengers slammed the apparently looming decision to cancel Republican primary elections across the country.
Insisting his campaign isn’t going anywhere, former Congressman Joe Walsh bluntly shared:
‘It’s wrong, the RNC should be ashamed of itself, and I think it does show that Trump is afraid of a serious primary challenge because he knows his support is very soft… We also intend to loudly call out this undemocratic bull on a regular basis.’
Former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld — who has a past affiliation with the Libertarian Party — added:
‘We don’t elect presidents by acclamation in America. Donald Trump is doing his best to make the Republican Party his own personal club. Republicans deserve better.’
Neither one of them have so far shown up in polls with even close to the level of support that would be required to topple Trump. Weld has gotten up to around 15 percent of the support in polls — but that’s about it.
The Republican National Committee has already gotten their own operation underway in support of Trump’s re-election, a campaign for which the president has already hit the rally circuit. Even while pressing national issues remain like climate change, economic tension with China, and more — Trump’s out on the town, spouting blatant lies like his recent claim in New Hampshire that he’d have won the state in 2016 if not for illegal votes. There’s absolutely no evidence of these supposed illegal votes.
Even still, Republican officials across the country are falling in line behind the belligerence. POLITICO shares that Trump aides have “worked to ensure total control of the party machinery, installing staunch loyalists at state parties while eliminating potential detractors” – and apparently, they’re already seeing benefits from this scheme. Statements from state party chairpersons didn’t even entirely come from them directly. Some, like Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald’s insistence that it “would be malpractice on my part to waste money on a caucus to come to the inevitable conclusion that President Trump will be getting all our delegates,” came directly from the Trump campaign itself.
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