Since Donald Trump’s lead in the polls keeps growing — and the candidate is managing to inspire voters to scream "I touched him!" at tailgates despite him only giving minute-long speeches — a few prominent Republicans have become resigned to the fact that they may have to tepidly announce that they would vote for him. However, they don’t have to like it.
When asked, many GOP politicians have felt it necessary to offer a winding explanation for why they might support Trump — adding that this is still completely hypothetical and unlikely to happen and is more like making Game of Thrones plot predictions instead of commenting on reality.
There are those who justify the decision by playing “Would you rather?” with Trump and Hillary Clinton.
“I think Donald Trump’s a disaster,” Senator Rand Paul told Fox News earlier this month. “I think he’ll hurt the country and lose in a landslide, but I will still pledge to support the nominee because I think Hillary Clinton is the worst person on the planet to run the country … I won’t be enthusiastic, but I will support the nominee.”
“I can’t see myself saying a Democratic candidate would be better for the country,” Senator Chuck Grassley told The Hill. Senator John McCain said he’d also support the nominee no matter what — even if Trump did insinuate he wasn’t a war hero.
There are those who argue that being a Republican means something and that the party has to band together to try to change the world, even when faced with adversity or the apocalypse. “I guess you could come up with some scenario where something crazy could happen," Senator Rob Portman told The Hill, "but I think the country’s in trouble and I think if we don’t have new leadership and new policies, it’s hard to imagine it getting back on track.”
“We need to be unified, we need to win,” Jeb Bush told Good Morning America after saying he would “of course” vote for Trump if forced by circumstance. He added, however, that he thought “Mr. Trump ought to figure out a way maybe to lessen the divisive language, the hurtful language and talk about the aspirations of the American people rather than trying to prey on their fears.”
George Pataki, who has yet to figure out why no one is coming to his campaign events, still refuses to give in.
In case it wasn’t obvious, these politicians would appreciate it if voters would pick someone else. Was that clear? If not, here is Senator Lindsey Graham — a presidential candidate who has a far smaller chance of winning a primary than Trump — who didn’t bother coming up with tortured reasoning to explain a potential vote to make America great again. “I would vote for the nominee, if it was Donald, I’d hold my nose and vote," he told MSNBC last month.