Profile Updates: With Iowa Days Away, the Establishment Goes All-In for Trump
One quick announcement and then into this week’s update.
If you live in the South, don’t miss Conservative Review’s “Conservative Convention” being held in Greenville, SC on Thursday February 18, 2016. This is two days before the South Carolina Primary. You can read more about it here.
The more politics changes the more it stays the same. This week saw the establishment lining up behind one candidate and constitutional conservatives lining up behind another. Except this time, the two candidates in question are both supposedly anti-establishment.
This week the establishment went all-in for Donald Trump, while constitutional conservatives have continued to rally around his rival Ted Cruz. Cruz himself said, “[T]he establishment is abandoning Marco Rubio for Donald Trump.”
While the developments of the past week have been remarkable, they were not unexpected. Almost four weeks ago, I wrote of the reasons the establishment preferred Trump over Cruz. Here’s what I said then: “[T]he political industrial complex believes deep down that they can negotiate with the author of The Art of the Deal; they know they will lose the levers of power with Ted Cruz.” What I predicted has come to pass.
A long litany of senators has come out in support of Trump. But it is not just them, the establishment is dragging old losing presidential candidates out to say that at least you can deal with Donald Trump. Case in point, Bob Dole, who told the New York Times: “Trump could ‘probably work with Congress, because he’s, you know, he’s got the right personality and he’s kind of a deal-maker.’”
All of this goes to prove that with nine days to go before the caucuses are complete in Iowa, the race really is between two candidates, Trump and Cruz. Ten days ago the editors at Conservative Review laid out reasons that conservatives should have pause over Mr. Trump. Yesterday, National Review joined in with a special issue titled “Against Trump.” A number of prominent conservative voices have written essays on why conservatives should hesitate before supporting Trump for president.
Because of the publication of “Against Trump,” the RNC disinvited National Review from hosting the February 26 debate in Texas. Jack Fowler, the publisher of the National Review, was not surprised. Fowler said, “We expected this was coming. Small price to pay for speaking the truth about The Donald.”
As the race has become a two-person contest there have been increasing flashpoints on issues as the Iowa caucus approaches. Most notably this week was the Renewable Fuel Standard, which mandates the use of ethanol in automobiles. Conservative Review Editor-in-Chief Mark Levin spent a great deal of time over the week showing just how bad Donald Trump’s pro-crony-capitalist position is.
In other noteworthy news, the Fox News debate criteria have been released. It is the same criteria used by Fox Business for their Charleston debate. This means that the top six candidates in the previous five national polls, by average, will make the main stage. In addition, if a candidate who did not place in the top six nationally places in the top five in Iowa or New Hampshire, that candidate will also be on the main stage. As it stands, Rand Paul, who missed the cut last week, will also miss the cut for the January 28th debate.
Here are the profile updates:
Donald Trump: Lately in Iowa Trump has been going around touting the benefits of wind energy. This is a departure from his previous position. In 2012, Trump tweeted, “Nobody wants wind turbines, they are failing all over the world and need massive subsidy -- a disaster for taxpayers.”
On Donald Trump’s signature issue of immigration, Conservative Review has uncovered more information that should give conservatives pause. For that reason we have downgraded his rating from good to mixed. Upon further review, it was noted that Donald Trump supported amnesty in 2013, that his son Eric described his current plan as a form of amnesty, and most importantly, in spite of his campaign trail rhetoric about how imported labor drives down wages, nine Trump-majority owned companies have been applying for H2B visas to bring in low wage imported labor.
Robert Eno is the Director of Research for Conservative Review and also is a Contributor. He is a conservative from deep blue Massachusetts but now lives in Greenville, SC. He is also a fill in radio host and appears on television. Follow him @robeno and feel free to email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.