Should Republicans run against Trump in 2020? | The Tylt

Should Republicans run against Trump in 2020?

Everything about the Trump presidency has been profoundly unusual, so it makes sense his reelection campaign would be no different. While sitting presidents rarely face challenges from members of their own party, several Republicans have been floating the possibility of facing off against Trump in a primary. No challenge from within an incumbent president's own party has ever succeeded, and typically the sitting president then loses to the opposing party. But many believe Trump is different and needs to be voted out of office. What do you think?

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Former Massachusetts governor William Weld officially announced his candidacy for president in mid-April, making him the first Republican to openly challenge Donald Trump for the White House. Weld was the governor of Massachusetts from 1991 to 1997 where he had a reputation as fiscally conservative and socially moderate. During the 2016 election, Weld was the vice presidential nominee for the Libertarian party. According to The Boston Globe, he has since rejoined the Republican party.

In a statement, Weld, 73, said “the voices of the American people are being ignored and our nation is suffering.”
“It is time to return to the principles of Lincoln — equality, dignity, and opportunity for all,” Weld said. “There is no greater cause on earth than to preserve what truly makes America great. I am ready to lead that fight.”
Weld, who formed an exploratory committee in February, has accused Trump of praising authoritarian leaders, humiliating allies, and railing against the rule of law. He has compared Trump’s immigration policies to Kristallnacht, the 1938 Nazi rampage that destroyed Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues.
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The Washington Post reports Weld may not be the last Republican to throw their hat in the race. Any primary challenger to the president, however, faces the daunting task of winning over Trump's diehard supporters. 

Polls, however, show Trump with continued and deep support among Republicans, and many GOP leaders who have expressed private grievances with Trump’s nationalism or conduct are reluctant to break with him publicly, fearing the wrath of the White House or Trump’s devoted followers.
Other Republicans who have flirted with primary challenges, such as Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and former Ohio governor John Kasich, have either bowed out of consideration or deflected overtures from Trump’s critics. Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), who has called for Trump’s impeachment, has not ruled out running, but he has not indicated whether he would run as a Republican, independent, or third-party candidate, should he jump in the race.
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Many leaders in the Republican party are urging someone to run against Trump, despite concerns about possibly splitting the party vote. They believe Trump is weaker than presidents before him, and a challenge could potentially succeed. Per CNN

At Politicon, a gathering of the politically nerdy in California this past weekend, Republican consultant Rob Stutzman made a bold prediction about the 2020 presidential race.
"It's completely feasible that there will be a long, drawn-out Republican primary for Trump to be renominated," Stutzman said.
Trump may well be uniquely vulnerable to a primary challenge given his dismal approval ratings, his lack of connections to the major donors in the GOP and the fact that many Republican establishment types never wanted him to be their nominee in the first place.
In other words: A path does exist for a serious primary challenge to Trump if he stays on, roughly, the course he is currently on.
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That said, many Republicans believe any attempt to run against Trump from within the party would merely muddy the waters and make the election more difficult for conservatives as a whole. According to The Week, it's better to focus on running against Democrats instead.

Remember when half of American white males over the age of 40 declared themselves for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016? There were so many candidates that they couldn't fit them all on two packed debate stages.
...Since Donald Trump is our incumbent president, and will thus almost surely be the GOP nominee in 2020, we should be spared a repeat, and really ought to be able to give our undivided attention to the approximately 437 mostly Social Security-eligible senators, governors, congressmen, mayors, and billionaire activists looking to run on the Democratic ticket in 2020. Unfortunately, Trump will almost certainly be challenged, either in the ostensibly meaningless Republican primaries or by one or more independent right-of-center candidates.
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Additionally, no challenge against a sitting president has succeeded in anything except guaranteeing that they lose to the challenger. Per New York Magazine:

There’s option A: an all-out NeverTrump-style protest campaign against the president that would challenge him directly. While that would almost certainly fall far short, it would serve to prove to anti-Trump conservatives that the Republican Party is not yet fully unified behind the president — potentially weakening him, or exposing his weaknesses, enough to ensure a Democrat’s election. “It’s important for there to be an alternative” candidate to Trump, said veteran GOP operative Stuart Stevens, Romney’s chief strategist in 2012 and one of the president’s most outspoken critics on the right. “But I can’t tell you who that alternative would be.” Such a challenge might essentially echo the experience of 1976, when Ronald Reagan took on President Gerald Ford, only to see Jimmy Carter take the White House; of 1980, when Ted Kennedy’s challenge of Carter kicked off a year that saw Carter hand the presidency to Reagan; or of 1992, when a relatively weak campaign run by TV pundit Pat Buchanan still spooked President George H.W. Bush, who went on to lose to Bill Clinton.
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After Weld's announcement, the Republican National Committee put out a sharp statement condemning his decision. Per NBC News:

"President Trump enjoys unprecedented support among Republicans. He has already delivered a long list of incredible accomplishments for conservatives and the country," an RNC spokesperson said. "The RNC and the Republican Party are firmly behind the president. Any effort to challenge the president’s nomination is bound to go absolutely nowhere."
FINAL RESULTS
Politics
Should Republicans run against Trump in 2020?
A festive crown for the winner
#RespectCurrentPOTUS
#RunAgainstTrump