On Monday the guiding light of the neocon faction of the Republican party, Bill Kristol, said a third party will be required if Donald Trump wins the GOP nomination.
Crowd-sourcing: Name of the new party we’ll have to start if Trump wins the GOP nomination? Suggestions welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) December 20, 2015
Establishment Republicans are in disarray over Trump’s accession and make no secret of their willingness to abandoned the party and even cross over and vote for Hillary Clinton. A prominent neocon and senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Max Boot, has denounced Trump as a fascist.
Boot is an official foreign policy advisor for Marco Rubio, the dark horse candidate who has courted casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. Adelson has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to influence the outcome of elections. “Rubio looks, walks, and quacks like a dyed-in-the-wool neocon,” writes the quasi-libertarian organization, Cato.
Jeff Greenfield, writing for Politico, notes the most vociferous Trump opponents hail from the neocon wing of the party. He believes “Trump running as a Republican could well face a third-party run—from the Republicans themselves… If you want to see the most sulfurous assaults on Trump, don’t look to the editorial pages of the New York Times or the comments of MSNBC personalities; look instead to the most prominent media voices in the conservative world: National Review, The Weekly Standard, Commentary and the columns of George Will and others.”
While third party candidates have fared poorly in national elections, the possibility of one capturing a key swing state like Florida would deny an establishment party candidate from taking the 270 Electoral College votes required to win the presidency.
The Constitution specifies that after a deadlocked election a vote must be held in the House of Representatives as a new session of Congress begins.
It is doubtful the neocon wing of the Republican party will be able to muster support to establish a third party powerful enough to beat Hillary Clinton. Democrats fear Bernie Sanders will form a third party after he is trounced in the primaries and this will pull a significant number of Democrats away from the party and give an advantage to the Republican candidate. However, fear of a Republican victory—especially the fear of a Trump victory—will undoubtedly bring a large number of Democrats back into the fold for the express purpose of defeating Trump.
In July 2014 The New York Times speculated the neocons may ultimately align themselves with Clinton. Boot remarked “it is clear that in administration councils she was a principled voice for a strong stand on controversial issues, whether supporting the Afghan surge or the intervention in Libya.”
In November Kentucky Senator and Republican candidate Rand Paul characterized Clinton as a neocon. “I think Hillary Clinton is a neocon,” Paul told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews.
“She supported the war in Iraq, in Afghanistan… If Hillary Clinton is president, we will be back at war in the Middle East.”
This is precisely what the establishment neocons hope for—a continuation of war in the Middle East and a revival of the Bush doctrine.
“We have done a tremendous disservice not only to the Middle East—we’ve done a tremendous disservice to humanity,” Trump said during the Republican debate. “The people that have been killed, the people that have been wiped away, and for what? It’s not like we had victory. It’s a mess. The Middle East is totally destabilized, a total and complete mess.”