After a 2005 video has surfaced of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump saying what most would consider to be derogatory and degrading comments about women, prominent Republicans have called for him to quit his presidential campaign and withdraw from the presidential race. In the video, Trump is heard discussing women in less than polite and gentlemanly terms.
Trump was videoed discussing trying to “f***” a married woman and how he wanted to kiss an actress that he was about to appear on camera with during his Days Of Our Lives cameo. Even more disturbingly, he is heard talking about how being in a position of power allows him to be sexually aggressive with women.
“And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything. … Grab them by the p****y. You can do anything.”
Top GOP leaders all over the country are publicly denouncing his words and withdrawing their support of his campaign, with others asking him to step down and suggesting that his running mate, Mike Pence, be the new candidate for the Republican Party with the election only a month away. Former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman believes it is prudent to allow Pence to take over the republican ticket.
“In a campaign cycle that has been nothing but a race to the bottom — at such a critical moment for our nation — and with so many who have tried to be respectful of a record primary vote, the time has come for Governor Pence to lead the ticket.”
Tweets from top Republicans across the country echoes these sentiments. George Pataki, Republican Governor of New York, shared his thoughts in the same manner Donald Trump commonly does – he tweeted them.
“[Trump’s] campaign is a poisonous mix of bigotry and ignorance. Enough! He needs to step down.”
The question in the mind of many Americans is troubling – in the unlikely event that Donald Trump voluntarily quits the race, is there no Republican nominee? Does Hillary Clinton automatically get elected to the presidency by default? As it turns out, there would be a very messy political situation if Trump quits the presidential race. His running mate, Mike Pence, would not automatically become the candidate for president of the Republican party – instead, the Republican party would have to go through a rather lengthy and involved formal process, according to Yahoo Finance.
The Republican National Committee does have guidelines for this type of situation, although the process was originated in case a candidate should die or something similar tragically occur. It has never before been suggested by so many members of the Republican party that a candidate step down, if it has been suggested at all. The RNC states that it can” fill any candidate vacancies that occur because of death, declination, or otherwise by either reconvening all 2,472 delegates to vote at another convention, or by letting its 168-member body decide via majority vote.”
Ballotpedia Charles Aull is an expert on the presidential race and its rules. He says it is unlikely that there is enough time to reconvene for another convention because we are too close to Election Day. Aull opined that choosing Pence may be the least controversial option, as he was already vetted by the Republican Party and chosen at the convention as suitable for Vice President. Choosing Pence may cause some voters to head to the polls who otherwise would stay home, Aull said, but even that would be a gamble.
Most have agreed that Trump cannot be “fired” by the RNC, no matter what has happened, although a few Republicans are radically interpreting the “or otherwise” statement to include someone who has made lewd comments. A more probable situation is that it is possible for the RNC to re-write its rules, but again, that is a lengthy process that most agree there is no time for. The New York Times agrees it is probably not possible for Trump to be “fired” from the candidacy, nor has such a thing ever been seriously suggested. It would be virtually impossible for a new candidate to run a campaign under such a compressed timeline, and the public would not feel like they knew the viewpoints of a new candidate.
However, although time is running out, it would be possible, if improbable, to replace Trump with Pence, providing the RNC follows its guidelines, Aull said. It may even be thrilling to some people and generate a lot of interest.
“If there was a replacement nominee, it’s still possible that that replacement nominee could win the election. Because so many of the issues that the GOP has been having have sort of centered on Trump himself … it would probably generate some excitement. People are bound to be excited if somebody like Pence stepped in.”
What are your thoughts – does the RNC have time to replace Trump with Pence? Would you vote for Pence?
[Featured Image by Alex Wong/Getty Images]