Priebus: Candidates who don't support Trump could be penalized

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus told Face the Nation that former presidential candidates who do not endorse Donald Trump for president could find themselves penalized if they run for president again.

CBS:

“Those people need to get on board,” he told CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “And if they’re thinking they’re going to run again someday, I think that we’re going to evaluate the process – of the nomination process and I don’t think it’s going to be that easy for them.”

Several of Trump’s former Republican primary opponents, including Ohio Gov. John KasichTexas Sen. Ted Cruz, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush have not endorsed Trump in the months since the GOP businessman secured the nomination. Asked explicitly whether that meant there would be penalties for the handful of 2016 Republican hopefuls who have not endorsed Trump if they opted to run again in 2020 or 2024, Priebus said nothing has been decided but that it’s something the party will “look at.”

All of the major Republican candidates, including Trump, signed a so-called “loyalty pledge” last summer stating that they would support the eventual Republican nominee “regardless of who it is.” The document wasn’t legally binding, but candidates were asked to sign it last summer after Trump at the time wouldn’t rule out a third-party bid if he lost the nomination.

“People in our party are talking about what we’re going to do about this. I mean there’s a ballot access issue in South Carolina. In order to be on the ballot in South Carolina, you actually have to pledge your support to the nominee, no matter who that person is,” Priebus said. “So what’s the penalty for that? It’s not a threat, but that’s just the question that we have a process in place.”

“And if a private entity puts forward a process and has agreement with the participants in that process, and those participants don’t follow through with the promises that they made in that process, what-- what should a private party do about that if those same people come around in four or eight years?” Priebus continued.

Priebus has a valid point, even if the NeverTrumps don't think so.  The fact is, all those candidates who have not endorsed the nominee have received varying levels of assistance from the national party during their political careers.  The national party has nominated Donald Trump, and to refuse to support him is an act of betrayal. 

What's the point of belonging to a political party if you don't get on board when the party has clearly spoken?  This is especially true since all of these men and women wanted to lead the party or are bona fide Republican leaders.  At the very least, they should be stripped of any leadership position, and if they are currently holding political office, they should be denied national resources unless they come out in support of the nominee.

There is nothing vindictive in Priebus's statements.  It is simply common sense.  You either move forward together as a party or the party falls apart.  If the non-endorsers of Trump want to assuage their consciences by refusing to support him, a price must be paid.

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus told Face the Nation that former presidential candidates who do not endorse Donald Trump for president could find themselves penalized if they run for president again.

CBS:

“Those people need to get on board,” he told CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “And if they’re thinking they’re going to run again someday, I think that we’re going to evaluate the process – of the nomination process and I don’t think it’s going to be that easy for them.”

Several of Trump’s former Republican primary opponents, including Ohio Gov. John KasichTexas Sen. Ted Cruz, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush have not endorsed Trump in the months since the GOP businessman secured the nomination. Asked explicitly whether that meant there would be penalties for the handful of 2016 Republican hopefuls who have not endorsed Trump if they opted to run again in 2020 or 2024, Priebus said nothing has been decided but that it’s something the party will “look at.”

All of the major Republican candidates, including Trump, signed a so-called “loyalty pledge” last summer stating that they would support the eventual Republican nominee “regardless of who it is.” The document wasn’t legally binding, but candidates were asked to sign it last summer after Trump at the time wouldn’t rule out a third-party bid if he lost the nomination.

“People in our party are talking about what we’re going to do about this. I mean there’s a ballot access issue in South Carolina. In order to be on the ballot in South Carolina, you actually have to pledge your support to the nominee, no matter who that person is,” Priebus said. “So what’s the penalty for that? It’s not a threat, but that’s just the question that we have a process in place.”

“And if a private entity puts forward a process and has agreement with the participants in that process, and those participants don’t follow through with the promises that they made in that process, what-- what should a private party do about that if those same people come around in four or eight years?” Priebus continued.

Priebus has a valid point, even if the NeverTrumps don't think so.  The fact is, all those candidates who have not endorsed the nominee have received varying levels of assistance from the national party during their political careers.  The national party has nominated Donald Trump, and to refuse to support him is an act of betrayal. 

What's the point of belonging to a political party if you don't get on board when the party has clearly spoken?  This is especially true since all of these men and women wanted to lead the party or are bona fide Republican leaders.  At the very least, they should be stripped of any leadership position, and if they are currently holding political office, they should be denied national resources unless they come out in support of the nominee.

There is nothing vindictive in Priebus's statements.  It is simply common sense.  You either move forward together as a party or the party falls apart.  If the non-endorsers of Trump want to assuage their consciences by refusing to support him, a price must be paid.