The Long Game

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The 2016 elections are already shaping up to be one of the most divisive in modern history. It’s getting to the point the Crips and the Bloods might need to hold an intervention for the Republicans and Democrats, and considering both major parties wear the colors of said gangs, it might be pretty easy to figure out which one is going to side with which.

Either way, the Republican nomination process is under fire by…the current Republican frontrunner, Donald Trump. As the states start picking delegates, Trump’s campaign is starting to see there’s more to winning a state than winning the popular vote. It’s also important to make sure your people are in place at the state level so they can represent you at the national convention. And what we’ve seen in Iowa, Louisiana, Colorado, North Carolina, and possibly other states, the Trump campaign has been left flatflooted as the Ted Cruz campaign has racked up additional delegates simply by…following the rules.

I know! That bastard! How dare Ted Cruz play by the rules!

Seriously, though, the Cruz campaign is being accused of using “Gestapo tactics” because they’re playing the long game. In politics, like in war, you cannot just win a battle and claim victory for the entire war. As conditions change, strategy must adapt to ensure more victories can lead to winning the war. Like it or not, Cruz’s approach focusing on winning delegates is strategically wise because it shows knowledge of the current process. Is it a perfect process? Heck no! But it is the process all the candidates agreed upon as they decided to run.

At the risk of getting flamed worse than the Hindenburg, the Trump campaign is trying to change the rules in the middle of the game. Instead of learning from the mistakes made in the aforementioned states and adjusting to reduce the likelihood of mistakes in future contests, the Trump campaign is…salting the ground by trying to delegitimize the process. Although this may work in the short term, it can only end badly in the long term.

Let’s say Trump does better than expected and wins 1237 or more delegates at the Republican National Convention. Will he accept the nomination, or will he reject it? If he does the former, it makes it look like he’s buying into the very process he’s attacking right now. If he rejects it, it makes him look like a quitter and not a serious candidate.

That leads to another question: what will happen with the Trump voters? In the former scenario, it doesn’t hurt Trump very much, but it does hurt in the credibility department, and you know Hillary Clinton will not hesitate to use something like that should she overcome Bernie Sanders and gets her party’s coronation…I mean nomination. In the latter scenario, Trump and the GOP gets crushed as Trump voters may not be motivated to vote in the general election. It would rip the heart and soul out of a lot of people, people who could cause candidates further down the ballot to lose.

This is why the long game is important. Ted Cruz may not be your cup of Earl Grey, but he’s not to blame for the Trump delegate situation. Cruz is playing the long game, and playing it well. Trump’s team needs to take a look at itself closely and readjust their strategy in dealing with the delegate issue in a constructive rather than destructive way.

Author: Thomas

I'm a small town boy living in the heart of Iowa watching the world go by with my wife and dog.

2 thoughts on “The Long Game”

  1. I can only speak for the 3rd District GOP Convention in Iowa. I know what took place there first hand. I am a delegate to the District Convention where the National Delegates and Alternates are chosen. First of all, I really don’t like the term “game” when it comes to politics. We are supposed to be deciding the fate of our Party, our Nation, and our Republic for generations yet to come. If you want to play a game. I suggest clicking on the Football RPG link at the top of this page and downloading a copy of it. Have lots of fun with your family and friends while playing a game.

    Politics isn’t a game unless your only interest is personal gain and power. Which is exactly the type of leadership our Party, Nation, and Republic does not need. But the widespread use of the term when speaking about elections shows the true apathy and disgust for politics that exists throughout our Republic.

    At the 3rd District GOP Convention in Iowa that took place on Saturday, April 9th in Creston, there were 30 nominees for National Delegate. A number of them were from the political establishment of the Party in the State of Iowa. It’s movers and shakers. Those who always hold positions of power and authority in the State GOP. At least a thrid of those nominees were supporting Donald Trump. Another full third supported Ted Cruz. And the remainder were open. Each of Iowa’s 4 districts gets to elect 3 National Delegates. All 3 of those elected by were Ted Cruz supporters.

    A second round of nominations were held to elect 3 Alternate Delegates to the National Convention as well. In that running, more than half were Donald Trump supporters. I was one of those delegates attending that was nominated to be an Alternate Delegate to the National Convention. There were at total of 18 of use seeking those 3 spots. And the delegates that won? Were all Ted Cruz supporters.

    I will admit that I do believe it to be a mistake that Donald Trump doesn’t have a team in Iowa any longer. He’s new to this side of politics. I hope we can fix the issue in other states before more National Delegates are chosen.

    As far as the Cruz campaign is going. It has played with dirty politics since day one. Ted Cruz is using his father’s suggestion to win “by any means necessary.” This includes bribery of neutral delegates. Contacting delegates to provide them with information of who they should vote for at the District Convention when elections are held for various offices including the National and Alternate Delegates.

    Ted Cruz’s actions during this campaign cycle are by far the worst I have ever seen by a candidate for the President of the United States. And I have been around this block a number of times. His actions are going to be responsible for a major split in the Republican Party come the convention. This is going to cause a Hillary Clinton victory in November. Unless we get really lucky and the Democrats have Bernie Sanders running as a 3rd party nominee.

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