Trump & the Republican Civil War: Who Fired First? @JamesTaranto, @WSJopinion.

Oct 12, 2016, 06:14 AM

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Trump & the Republican Civil War: Who Fired First? @JamesTaranto, @WSJopinion.

“…But on Saturday, as the Post noted, “more than two dozen Republican lawmakers . . . called on Trump to leave the race, often touting vice presidential candidate Mike Pence as an alternative.” No dice, replied Trump on Twitter: “The media and establishment want me out of the race so badly - I WILL NEVER DROP OUT OF THE RACE, WILL NEVER LET MY SUPPORTERS DOWN! #MAGA.” It was a response to what the Post, in breaking the story of the video Friday, called Trump’s “extremely lewd conversation about women in 2005” with TV personality Billy Bush, a first cousin of Jeb. Surely it was news to nobody that Trump could be vulgar and crass, but his language here, which we see no need to repeat, was especially vivid. In that August column we argued that Nevertrump Republicans, in asserting that the nominee was so unacceptable as to justify a breach in party loyalty, had a problem: “By what standard is Trump unfit? In answer to that question, every Trump opponent will give you his own list. . . . [The argument] amounts to this: ‘Many people find him objectionable for various reasons.’ ” The Friday news focused attention on one reason and thereby dramatically simplified the problem for those considering a repudiation of Trump.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-gop-meltdown-1476120867

But if the outcome appears not to be in doubt—if one of the loathsome candidates, namely Mrs. Clinton, seems to be running away with it—then some voters will feel relieved of the duty of holding their noses and casting an unnecessary or futile ballot for the less loathsome candidate. That’s how Johnson could surpass 5%. Then what? Maybe nothing: The Reform Party did it in 1996, when Ross Perot surpassed 8%. In 2000 Pat Buchanan got a $12.6 million subsidy and managed only 0.43%—though his total in Florida was considerably greater than the margin between George W. Bush and Al Gore. The Reform Party still exists, but barely. But 2016 may be an unusually opportune year for a third party to cross the threshold. As we noted yesterday, the Trump travails have brought the GOP to the verge of catastrophe. A loss in November—even a less-than-catastrophic one—will leave the party bitter and divided. As Scher observes, an ascendant Libertarian Party “could permanently divide the right, making it exceedingly difficult for Republicans to win the White House, or, in the most apocalyptic of scenarios, make the Republican Party go the way of the Whigs.” http://www.wsj.com/articles/a-chance-in-l-1476210359