The Republican Establishment’s plan to “win” the nomination for Marco Rubio is so obtuse that every GOP voter should be rebuking the attempt. Only Ted Cruz or Donald Trump have paths to win the nomination outright. Rubio’s plan is a contested convention which will yield the same results in November as a Trump nomination. If he’s nominated in this manner, the Democrats will win just like they would if Trump is the nominee.
Here’s how the contested convention works. For a candidate to win the nomination, they have to come into the convention with 1,237 delegates pledged to them. When this happens (as it almost always does), the convention is more of a rally. It’s a formality. It’s a way for the party to highlight some speakers, announce some of their platform positions for the election, give some love to potential future candidates (see Barack Obama’s Democratic convention speech in 2004), and generally rail on the Democrats.
In a contested convention, nobody has the delegates to win outright. After the first votes are cast, either someone is nominated or nobody is. When nobody is nominated, the second and subsequent votes are “free.” Most states allow their delegates to be “brokered” towards the candidate of their choice. In such a scenario, the Republican Establishment’s thinking is that the “smart people” will migrate towards Rubio since he’s the Establishment’s “chosen one.”
Here are the two biggest problems with this (and there are several). If Rubio gets the nomination in this fashion, the Democrats will rightfully point out that he’s a candidate who couldn’t even get his own party’s voters to support him. This will be a blow, but not as big as the other glaring problem with this scenario: Republican revolt. The vast majority of Trump’s supporters and a good chunk of Cruz’s supporters will be too angry to support Rubio. Some will begrudgingly vote along party lines just to keep Hillary Clinton out of the White House, but many will simply stay home in November.
Don’t get me started on the likelihood that Trump will go third-party if he’s robbed of the nomination at the convention.
It’s the only thing the Republican Establishment has in their pocket to prevent Cruz (because they hate him) or Trump (because he’d lose) from getting the nomination. Their endemic shortsightedness has them believing that they can survive if they can get Rubio into the nomination even when he loses in November. What they apparently don’t understand is that this is their final stand, period. Their lies have been exposed and many of the conservatives of America will fight to bring proper governance back to the party and the country.
The Democrats want one of two things: a Trump nomination or a contested convention. Both would ensure their victory in November. At this point, the only possible way for the Republicans to win the White House is to nominate Ted Cruz whether you like him or not.