Renowned conservative columnist George Will has left the GOP over presumptive nominee Donald Trump. According to the New York Times, George Will revealed in an interview with PJ Media that he officially changed his voting registration to unaffiliated.
“This is not my party.”
George Will is highly respected in the conservative community, writing commentary for the past 40 years. He’s also a Pulitzer Prize winner. From the offset, Will has warned the conservative community about the dangers of Donald Trump, noting Trump’s divisive rhetoric could cost the Republican Party the presidency, Congress, and forever taint the image of the party with minorities and women — a relationship which is already fragmented. With the surge of establishment vs. anti-establishment on the political right, George Will is also concerned a Trump presidency would forever divide the party, thus seeing an end to a more than a decades-long GOP united front.
In a column posted on the Washington Post, George Will further identified reasons for leaving the Republican Party.
“In Trump, Republicans have someone whose reputation is continental only in being broadly known. He illustrates Daniel Boorstin’s definition of a celebrity as someone well-known for his well-knownness. It will be wonderful if Trump tries to translate notoriety into fulfillment of his vow — as carefully considered as anything else about his candidacy — to carry New York and California. He should be taunted into putting his meager campaign funds where his ample mouth is. Every dime or day he squanders on those states will contribute to a redemptive outcome, a defeat so humiliating — so continental — that even Republicans will be edified by it.”
Mr. Will also is concerned about Trump’s unwillingness to release his taxes. A man shrouded in secrecy is not something conservatives are prone to support. However, Trump’s base isn’t concerned with it, proving that Trump is beyond reproach. The conservative columnist is extremely concerned about this apathy of accountability.
“If his fear of speculation about his secrecy becomes greater than his fear of embarrassment from what he is being secretive about, he will release the returns. He should attach to them a copy of his University of Pennsylvania transcript, to confirm his claim that he got the “highest grades possible.” There are skeptics.”
In 2012, the Republican Party ran an autopsy report that revealed many troubling spots for the party. The report identified that minorities, women, and millennials viewed the party as racists, bigots, xenophobics, sexist, and the party of white people only. Also, the report identified that people saw the party as working to protect the interests of the wealthy only.
The negative results shocked the party. Thus, it became imperative for the GOP brand to commission work to change these perspectives or else risk losing the presidency and seats in Congress for years to come. For years, Republicans were complacent being a political party of majority white constituents. However, with a growing diverse electorate, the report rightly noted these two choices: Continue to be content losing the presidency and Congressional seats, or veer to the future. The president of the RNC Reince Priebus and many in the party chose the latter.
“On the voter engagement front, we discussed the need to make investments, including hiring national and state-based staff, to communicate directly with African Americans, Hispanics, and Asian Pacific Americans. The party ‘has to stop talking to itself,’ we noted, and we urged Republicans to engage with voters who don’t always identify with Republicans.”
Thus, in 2012, Priebus set in motion selling conservatism to a diverse geographic, setting up offices in urban cities and racially diverse communities.
Then Donald Trump decided to run for president as a Republican.
Donald Trump’s presidential candidacy speech left more than a handful of the electorate shocked. During Trump’s declaration that he was running for president on the Republican ticket, he reiterated the need for national security, citing he would force Mexico to build a wall to prevent Mexican “rapist and drug dealers,” from crossing the border. Later, during the primary, Trump said he would put American Muslims under federal surveillance. Trump is on record stating he wants to ban Muslims from entering the country, albeit temporarily.
For months, Trump verbally harassed Fox News host and conservative Megyn Kelly via Twitter because she asked him during a debate about past sexual harassment claims made by several women. Often Trump retweets racists, bigot, and xenophobic comments from white supremacists. After the mass shooting in Orlando at Pulse Gay Nightclub, he congratulated himself for foreseeing another radical Islamic attack on American soil — pivoting Trump’s idea that President Obama’s lack of leadership to tame radical Islamicism was responsible for this.
Trump also secured a reputation for praising Russian President Vladimir Putin, whom many foreign leaders view as a dictator and a communist sympathizer. According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump told NBC’s Meet the Press that Putin was a strong leader.
“He’s a strong leader. And I’m not going to be politically correct.”
Unlike many leaders in democratic countries who denounced Putin, Trump said if he were to win the presidency, he would partner with Russia on geopolitical matters.
“I think it would be a positive thing if Russia and the United States actually got along.”
Human Rights Watch, however, disagrees with Trump that Putin is a good leader. In its 2014 report, HRW scorned Putin for his human rights violations.
Trump’s perceived bigotry, racism, sexism, anti-Muslim rhetoric, anti-political correctness, and lack of understanding foreign policy has depleted George Will. Mr. Will is unwilling to compromise on his morals and values. Instead, he chooses to side with traditional conservatism and is taking the route of distancing himself from a divisive figure– making him a #NeverTrump supporter.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 19, 2015
[Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images]