Opinion: Republicans Should Dump Trump in 2020

There's no good reason to keep him


Flashback to 2016: Donald J. Trump, real estate developer and host of NBC’s The Apprentice, wins the Republican nomination for President. Despite failing to persuade many Republican voters to back his candidacy during the primary, Trump is able to consolidate support from Republicans and independents to win the general election. Since winning the election in 2016, the President has been mired in scandal, facing allegations of sexual assault, corruption, and even treason. He’s deeply unpopular with the American public, setting a new record as the first President never to enjoy a positive approval rating during his term in office. Legislatively, he has proven himself an incompetent negotiator, shutting down the government for a record 35 days and coming away without a wall. He failed to pass more than one piece of major legislation during his tenure so far: the tax cut, managing to hand a trillion dollars to the wealthy while exploding the deficit. On foreign policy, he’s allowed Iran to resume their nuclear weapons program, unilaterally withdrawn from the Paris Climate Accords, and appeased the Russian government.

Democrats and opponents of the President recognize these talking points, but his Republican allies and supporters should too. Conservatives could get all they love about the President and more from another, better Republican nominee. They’re under no obligation to keep him. Let’s challenge some of the traditional misconceptions about the President and removing him from the ticket.

1. Republican voters love him.

Okay, this one is partially true. The President enjoys approval ratings above 80% with self-identified Republicans, but he didn’t always. Back during the 2016 Republican primary, now-President Trump couldn’t even crack 45% with Republican voters, let alone 50%. The majority of Republicans wanted someone else in 2016. How hard would it be for Republicans to fall in love with some other candidate?

2. He’s not like other Republicans.

Trump is not your traditional Republican when it comes to discourse and personality. He’s brash, crude, and infuriating to liberals. I get that. Yet conservatives often say they love the President for cutting taxes, slashing regulations, increasing spending on the military, and appointing conservatives to the Supreme Court. These are policies you could get with any generic Republican, without marital infidelity, love of white supremacists, or Russian collusion.

3. The Republicans need him to win.

In 2016, Donald Trump pulled off a stunning victory, cracking the so-called “Blue Wall” in the Midwest. There’s a lot of evidence to suggest, however, that these trends preceded the President and would have happened anyway. Similar upset Republican victories happened during the last midterm of the Obama administration, in 2014. Trump may be more of a liability than an asset at this point as well.

All voters should welcome the entrance of former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld into the Republican primary race. Perhaps former South Carolina Governor and Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley will consider joining the race as well.