Republican Party leaders in four states — Nevada, Arizona, Kansas, and South Carolina — have recently decided not to hold primary election contests next year, a move that has drawn criticism from a number within their own party.
The idea behind them canceling their primaries isn’t foreign, and has been done in a limited number of times in recent history. Republicans canceled primaries in 1984 and 2004, when incumbents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush ran virtually unopposed, for example.
But this year, President Donald Trump faces challenges from three other Republican candidates, and yet the states still decided it was worth canceling their primaries over.
Former Congressman Joe Walsh, speaking on the CNN program “New Day,” voiced his dissatisfaction with the move, likening GOP leadership’s adherence to the president as being similar to a “cult,” adding that party heads in those states are “all about washing their leaders’ feet every day.”
Walsh was determined to continue on in his campaign, in spite of the cancelations — including campaigning in states that have halted their primary contests.
“We’re going to campaign in South Carolina, Arizona, Nevada, and Kansas, because I believe if we let these Republican voters know that the President of the United States just took away their right to vote, they’ll march on the headquarters of their state parties to get that right to vote back,” Walsh said.
Walsh was adamant that the election contests be put back on, in spite of his slim chances of winning. “We can’t just cancel elections in this country. That’s what Donald Trump is doing. He’s literally canceling elections,” he explained, adding that Trump “would like this [country] to be Russia.”
Walsh was joined by his two other opponents in the Republican contests, former governors Mark Sanford of South Carolina and Bill Weld of Massachusetts, in an op-ed the three authored together, calling for the primaries in those four states to be reinstated.
“Each of us believes we can best lead the party. So does the incumbent. Let us each take our case to the public,” the three wrote in the Washington Post op-ed.
Trump presently has an approval rating with Republicans that’s somewhere between 84 percent and 88 percent, depending on which poll you look at, Vox reported. In spite of that high rating, the president has still inflated his numbers, dubiously claiming he has a 94 percent approval rating among Republicans, in spite of no such poll existing in the public sphere.
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Chris Walker is a freelance writer based out of Madison, Wisconsin. A millennial with more than a decade of journalism experience, Chris aims to provide readers with the latest and most accurate news of national importance. Chris likes to spend his free time doing activities in his community with his family.