An effort to dump Donald Trump as the Republican Party’s nominee is gaining steam once again, with reports that party insiders are hoping a last-minute change to the rules at this summer’s convention could open the door to another candidate being selected.
After finishing the month of May on a strong note in which he overtook Hillary Clinton in polls for the first time this campaign, Trump has been on a downward spiral that is pointing toward a massive blowout in November. Trump’s campaign has faltered in every conceivable way — from Trump alienating voters with a series of controversies to his reported aversion to doing any fundraising, which led the Republican National Committee this week to put out an “emergency” push for $100,000.
Trump also has a bare-bones staff, scarce field offices, and has been buying virtually no advertising spots in key swing states. All of that has led to a group of insiders hoping to somehow pick a new person to represent the party.
As the Detroit Free Press noted, there are still many delegates who see disaster with Donald Trump:
Former Michigan Republican Party chairman Saul Anuzis, a key adviser to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, is hoping there’s a way to come out of the GOP convention with a stronger candidate than Trump, whom he fears on both philosophical and political grounds.
“There is kind of this very broad, unorganized, unfocused group who, for a variety of different reasons, have concerns about Trump,” he said. “Two years ago, he was a populist liberal and today he’s a populist conservative. That’s a legitimate concern.”
The effort to dump Donald Trump as the Republican Party’s nominee has gone through several waves. The initial push came early in the campaign, after it became clear that Trump was headed toward a victory but before it was known whether he would reach the 1,237-delegate threshold to win the nomination on a first vote at this summer’s convention.
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) June 26, 2016
Analysis: Thousands of Republican donors avoid Trump https://t.co/AnFHDNUHyw Millions of Republican voters will avoid Trump in November.
— MikeBates (@MikeBates) June 26, 2016
Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich remained in the race largely for that reason, hoping that if they could keep Trump from reaching the threshold then one of them could convince delegates to select them on a second vote. But Trump’s surprisingly large win in the Indiana primary showed that he could reach that point even with both men in the race, prompting both Cruz and Kasich to drop out within a few days of the primary.
For all the efforts to once again oppose Donald Trump as the nominee, Politico noted that it’s likely fail yet again. The political news outlet called all 112 members of the convention’s rules committee, which was the target of the Dump Trump movement, finding that the effort seemed to have no chance of going through and that Trump actually had some big support among the members.
What emerged from the survey, though, is a portrait of a committee with little interest in the dump Trump crowd. In fact, most members may be eager to stop them.
“I support DJT 100%,” said Alabama rules committee member Laura Payne in an email. “I ran to support … Trump & to represent the voters of Alabama. It may or may not be an attempt, but the voters will prevail.”
But with the effort to dump Donald Trump likely to fail, there could still be a smaller-scale coup against the real estate magnate. There have been reports that the Republican National Committee may be filtering funding away from Trump’s campaign, conceding the likely defeat to Hillary Clinton in order to send as much funding and support to vulnerable congressional candidates.
[Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images]