It is time for Republicans to seriously consider an exit strategy as they grapple with the rise of Trump. It may be necessary for men and women of principle within the party to set the self-detonation sequence as they escape the ship to a new party. Trump and his angry band of supporters are starting to board and the GOP, as an entity, will be a terrible place to stay for many elected officials.
Already in Arizona the Democrats are attacking John McCain for saying he would support Donald Trump as the nominee. It is only going to get worse.
An independent bid would be difficult because of the signature requirements in places like Texas, but Rick Perry could potentially mount a successful bid.
However, it may be possible to launch a bid to adopt the Constitution Party as a new party of Republican resistance. The Constitution Party is in every state and would be an easier way to proceed than creating a new third party or launching an independent bid.
One thing is certain, however. Plans must be put forward now. Randy Barnett is right. The problem for the GOP is that Trump will be deeply destructive to down ballot races and could lead to a huge Republican vote staying home. Those Republicans not voting could cause devastation only a few years after the GOP saw its biggest gains since the late 1800’s.
Controlling so many state legislatures and Governors mansions could be advantageous in access for a Republican third party bid. Many of those incumbents understand that their survival depends on an alternative to Donald Trump.
If Trump wins the GOP nomination, Hillary Clinton is going to win the Presidency. But the GOP still has the potential to build a firewall of support for Republicans nationwide through a third party. Planning needs to get underway immediately and the GOP needs to release that they waited too late on Trump, they should not wait so long that they cannot save themselves.