President Donald Trump’s three Republican challengers said it’s a “critical mistake” for the party to cancel primaries ahead of the 2020 election.
Bill Weld, Joe Walsh, and Mark Sanford wrote a Washington Post opinion piece published Friday, Sept. 13, urging the party to reconsider because it “stands for nothing but reelection.”
“A president always defines his or her party, and today the Republican Party has taken a wrong turn, led by a serial self-promoter who has abandoned the bedrock principles of the GOP,” they said.
The three Republicans argued that would be a “critical mistake to allow the Democratic Party to dominate the national conversation during primary and caucus season” while Republicans choose a nominating process that resembles Russia or China.
At least four states—South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas—have canceled Republican primaries or caucuses next year, ensuring President Trump gains re-nomination.
“It would be malpractice on my part to waste money on a caucus to come to the inevitable conclusion that President Trump will be getting all our delegates in Charlotte. We should be spending those funds to get all our candidates across the finish line instead,” Nevada GOP Chairman Michael McDonald said.
Joe Walsh, a longtime conservative radio talk show host, said on Twitter that the president was acting “like a mob boss” who “orders the elimination of primaries.”
President Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh said that “these are decisions made entirely by state parties, and there are volumes of historical precedents to support them,” reported Fox News.
He stressed that “President Trump will dominate and prevail in whatever contest is placed before him.”
The three long-shot challengers are expected to face off in their own debate hosted by Business Insider later this month.
President Trump, whose job-approval rating remains positive with 94% of the party, has dubbed his three challengers “The Three Stooges,” saying that he “should be able to take them!”