While the season lasted, I was a staunch supporter of Ted Cruz. I’m sorry to see him defeated (though I’m sure most have been through this already, in a 17-candidate Hunger-Games style primary.) But I’m also glad to be done with the animosity and ‘mine-is-the-one-and-only’ attitude that prevails during the primaries, and I am now ready to throw my whole support behind the presumptive nominee, Donald Trump.
I admire and respect Trump. On multiple occasions, I have drawn attention to things that I disagree with him about, or to blemishes in his record that made him seem less than conservative. But as Ronald Reagan once said, “He who agrees with me 80% of the time is not my enemy.” I believe that it is my duty as a citizen of a Republic to be willing to look outside my own faction-within-a-faction for leadership.
America is a diverse nation, and one shouldn’t expect to always have the option of supporting a candidate who matches own unique image of the ideal candidate. (No – the Libertarian party doesn’t count; breaking all the records for third-party turnout won’t keep Hillary from appointing the next Supreme Court Justice).
I am a classical conservative with libertarian leanings; Trump is a populist conservative who leans toward the center. But we are on the same side of most of the big issues. On some of these – especially Second Amendment rights, veterans affairs, and the need for a non-interventionist foreign policy – Trump has held steady for decades; on others, his conservative positions are more recent. All in all, I believe that Trump is a patriotic American who shares most of my values, and who strongly believes that the current elitist, left-leaning leadership must be driven out if we as a nation are to regain our former greatness.
And even for those who can’t accept Trump on his own merits, it should still be plain to all concerned that he is lightyears better than Hillary Clinton. Consider the issue of the Supreme Court: Trump has stated his intention of appointing conservative Justices, and even if he is imperfect in following through with this promise, he will doubtless do much better than Hillary packing the Court with liberal ideologues who will utterly abolish the freedom of speech, the press, religion, and the right to keep and bear arms.
The Republican Party is a big-tent party. Trump has virtues and vices just like any other candidate, and I think that his shortcomings tend to get attention, not because they’re objectively worse than those of other politicians, but because they’re different. Now is the time for Republicans to move beyond these differences and unite behind our nominee. This is why, as of tonight, I am fully and unapologetically supporting Donald Trump for President. Together, we will make America great again.