Making Sense by Michael Reagan

I heard there was another Republican presidential debate this week.

I didn’t watch it – I’ve suffered enough, thanks.

I don’t care how few political masochists tuned in to CNN Wednesday night to watch Nikki Haley and Ron DeSantis engage in another meaningless debate.

I don’t care who the big-shot media think “won” or "lost."

Twelve hours later, it already doesn’t matter one bit.

Everyone knows the ultimate winner was the same guy who won all the previous GOP debates and was appearing simultaneously Wednesday night at a town hall on Fox – Donald Trump.

As we’ve known for a year, unless he drops dead, Trump will be the GOP’s 2024 nominee no matter what the liberal media says or hopes or tries to make happen.

On Thursday morning I read something in what’s left of USA Today that could have been written after every Republican presidential primary debate so far.

Instead of “robust policy discussions” and articulating their positions, a political science professor said, Haley and DeSantis “focused a lot on attacking each other.”

Sadly, attacking each other is what Republicans are focusing on a lot these days.

At this point in the GOP primary race, with Republican candidates ripping into Trump and each other like a pack of hyenas, my father must be turning over in his grave.

His 11th Commandment was that a Republican should never speak ill of a fellow Republican.

But that’s all Haley and DeSantis did in Iowa, where they argued like nasty little kids on a playground and traded “You’re a liar” slaps with “You’re a bigger liar” slaps.

Meanwhile, in the House of Representatives, where the GOP holds a precariously small and shrinking majority, Republicans still can’t stop squabbling with each other.

The most conservative faction – the tiny Freedom Caucus – is after the head of the new House speaker, Mike Johnson, for reaching a $1.66 trillion budget deal with Sen. Chuck Schumer and Senate Democrats to keep the federal government from shutting down in two weeks.

Dumping the Republican speaker? We’ve just gone down that dumb dead-end road and the Freedom Caucus was who led us there.

As I said on Newsmax this week, conservative Republicans in the House better wise up, do the math and understand the reality that they are a minority within their party.

They are never going to get everything they – and we – want in Congress or Washington until they start electing more Republicans to the House and Senate.

Controlling both the House and Senate is the only way Republicans will ever be able to push a “conservative” budget through Congress.

Then, if the White House is still in the hands of the people who are controlling Joe Biden, Biden can veto the Republican budget and take the heat from the public for closing down the federal government.

In the real world he lives in, Johnson made the best bargain he could.

If the government would have had to shut down because he couldn’t get a budget deal, Democrats and the media would have blamed Republicans, as they always do, and voters would punish the GOP in the fall.

Republicans have to stop their intra-party fighting and learn to unite like the Democrats do.

If Joe Biden is their nominee, every Democrat on Earth – or under the Earth – will vote for him for president in November. Several times, if necessary.

Instead of looking at things to snipe at each other about, Republicans have to realize that winning in November is more crucial than anything right now – to the party and, more important, to the country.

I can come up with some reasons not to like Haley or DeSantis or Trump for president – any conservative Reagan Republican can.

But the absolute worst Republican on the planet is better than the best Democrat on the planet.

And the Republican Party better figure that out this year before it’s too late.

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Copyright 2024 Michael Reagan, distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Michael Reagan, the son of President Ronald Reagan, is an author, speaker and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation. Send comments to [email protected] and follow @reaganworld on Twitter.