On Sunday, Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Chapman indulged in every liberal pundit’s favorite pastime: Offering heartfelt advice to the Republican Party.
These columns are always worth seeking out, if only for their inherent amusement value. You read them and wonder if anyone actually believes that the writer genuinely cares about what’s best for the GOP.
According to Chapman, Republicans should fear one November outcome above all others: A Donald Trump victory.
“In that case, they wouldn’t be stuck with him for the next two months,” Chapman writes. “They would be stuck with him for the duration of his presidency, and they would have to answer for him forever.”
Chapman foresees a Trump presidency marked by the wholesale end of NAFTA, the “indiscriminate bombing” of ISIS, the return of torture, the internment of Muslims, and a drone strike against Mexico.
“The question is not whether Trump would make bad choices in the White House – only which ones and when,” he writes.
Having, er, “proven” his case, Chapman goes on to paint a brighter picture for the future of the GOP.
“Compared with these nightmares,” he writes, “a Hillary Clinton presidency would have all sorts of advantages. It would give Republicans a unifying focus, mobilize them to block liberal policies, open the way for new conservative leaders to emerge and offer the party a chance to rebound at the polls in 2018.”
If you are an official “NeverTrump” type of conservative, Chapman’s argument might make a certain sort of sense. Sure, a Clinton presidency would be bad, but we could just regroup and put her out of a job in 2020. Put a true conservative at the top of the ticket and reunite a fractured Republican Party at long last. It’ll be magnificent!
But to get excited about that prospect, you’d have to forget that we’ve just been through two elections where that exact scenario might have unfolded. Barack Obama’s terrible presidency did not unite Republicans; if anything, it deepened the fractures and created the chaos of the 2016 primaries. How would a Hillary presidency have the opposite effect?
Changes to the country’s demographics – hurried along by liberal immigration policies – are going to soon make it extremely difficult for any Republican to win 270 electoral votes. It’s not an exaggeration to say that, without some serious changes, 2016 might be the party’s last chance to take the White House.
If liberals want us to pass up that chance, you might want to ask yourself why.