Stupid Bill Tricks

Last weekend Bill Kristol tweeted that an independent candidate would be entering the presidential race, “Just a heads up over this holiday weekend: There will be an independent candidate -- an impressive one, with a strong team and a real chance.”

Trump responded in predictably Trumpian fashion, “If dummy Bill Kristol actually does get a spoiler to run as an Independent, say goodbye to the Supreme Court!”

Followed up by, “The Republican Party has to be smart & strong if it wants to win in November. Can't allow lightweights to set up a spoiler Indie candidate!”

While this author is no fan of Donald Trump, adding another candidate to this race is a bad idea for conservatives. At present the conservative vote is split between Donald Trump and former Republican Governor Gary Johnson, the Libertarian candidate. The addition of a fourth candidate would further fracture the conservative vote, splitting it three ways and guaranteeing a Hillary Clinton presidency.

With Hillary a sure thing, the Democrats and their network of donors would pour money and energy into down-ballot races, threatening Republican control of the Senate and possibly even the House. Trump will probably lose this race, but the better Trump runs the better chance Republicans have of maintaining control of congress.

The last time the Democrats controlled both houses of congress and the presidency we got ObamaCare. This time, we could be looking at a blanket amnesty, higher taxes, and possibly new gun control. If never-Trump Republicans want to be able to have any say on policy, it behooves them to concentrate on down-ballot races instead of wasting time and effort on a third party candidate.

It could be argued that adding a more traditional Republican to the race would boost conservative turnout, benefiting down-ballot races. While this may be the case, the cost of getting that Republican on the ballot would be high. The fourth-party candidate would spend the next month collecting signatures and attacking the presumptive nominee, all to the benefit of Hillary. If that fourth-party candidate failed to even get on the ballot, their anti-Trump campaign would be a gift-basket to the Democratic party.

Politics involves hard-choices and compromise. For those who think Trump would be a complete disaster as President, you can always split your vote, voting for Hillary and voting for your local Republican candidate for the House and Senate. Wasting time and energy on a fourth party candidate merely draws money and energy away from the effort to maintain congressional majorities.

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