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Saturday, February 27, 2016

Should Cruz/Rubio Go Third Party? (Updated)

Many conservatives (and republicans alike) feared that a Trump candidacy for the GOP nomination for U.S. President would lead to a third party run. What was once feared may now give rise to hope. A third-party run may now be the best option for American conservatives. (I'm far from alone that this may be a real viable option for U.S. conservatives.)

With Trump looking more and more like the GOP nominee, and with Christian conservatives like myself aghast at the option of Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton for U.S. President, a Ted Cruz/Marco Rubio ticket sounds very appealing. It would not matter to me which one was at the top of the ticket.

A Cruz/Rubio ticket would have severe political ramifications. First of all, with Cruz/Rubio taking on both Trump and Clinton, we would likely see no candidate receive the necessary 270 electoral votes to become U.S. President. Thus, for the first time since the Presidential election of 1824, the U.S. House of Representatives would choose our President.

In 1824, despite finishing behind Andrew Jackson in both electoral votes and popular vote, John Quincy Adams became the sixth President of the United States. With the Democratic-Republican Party--then the only national political organization in the U.S.--unable to choose a single candidate, four separate candidates for U.S. President emerged.

With 131 electoral votes necessary to win, Jackson won 41% of the popular vote and 99 electoral votes. Adams won 31% of the popular vote and 84 electoral votes. Henry Clay from Kentucky won 13% of the popular vote and 37 electoral votes, and for William H. Crawford from Georgia it was 11% of the popular vote and 41 electoral votes.

Although it had no impact on the results of the election, this was the first U.S. Presidential election where the popular vote was counted. However, at this time, not every state selected their Presidential electors by popular vote. Some states still had their legislators choose their Presidential electors.

As one would expect (as most of us have witnessed in our time (Bush v. Gore)), Jackson and his supporters were very bitter at the outcome. The Jackson faction would become the Democrat Party. (Like Rush Limbaugh, I don't use the other moniker for the modern political party dominated by today's perverse liberalism.) The Adams/Clay faction would become the Whig Party. The Whig Party would fall apart over the issue of slavery and the anti-slavery Republican Party would rise in its place and become the chief opposition to the Democrat Party.

As slavery divided the U.S. in the 19th century, the modern moral issues facing America today have created a split in the U.S. unseen since the early to mid-1800s. Given the importance placed on today's moral issues--especially when it comes to issues important to the family, such as abortion and marriage--many Christian conservatives simply see no way they can support Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. (As I have pointed out, led by their liberal "values," I don't think either can be trusted on ANY issue.) This creates a very interesting opportunity for a Cruz/Rubio candidacy.

If there's a three-way race and the Republican controlled U.S. House must choose our President, I believe that Cruz/Rubio would be the choice. If this happens, several fascinating questions must be considered. First of all, what happens to the Republican Party? Also, would we see it replaced by a "Conservative Party?" Would we see the rise of other political parties?

Of course, this is all academic. Much is still to be decided. However, as we get closer and closer to actually choosing a GOP candidate, this scenario should be weighed.

Update:

Just a few minutes after posting my piece, I saw this by Rick Moran at PJ Media. He reports on a Politico piece that gives details of a memo prepared by a Florida research firm hired by big-money GOP donors. The memo reveals that significant factions within the GOP are looking to funding a run by a third-party candidate. No candidate is name, but it is clear that this scenario is gaining significant traction.

Copyright 2016, Trevor Grant Thomas
At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.
www.trevorgrantthomas.com
Trevor and his wife Michelle are the authors of: Debt Free Living in a Debt Filled World
tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com

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