Gov. Jim Martin: What it’ll take for Trump to get my vote

Former Governor Jim Martin on Republican Donald Trump: He was not my first, second or third preference.”
Former Governor Jim Martin on Republican Donald Trump: He was not my first, second or third preference.”

From former N.C. Gov. Jim Martin, a Republican:

Having devoted the greater part of my life to building a competitive two-party system in the Carolinas and the South, I cannot sit by and not do what I can to support Republican candidates. For that reason, and because of the increasing tilt of the Democratic Party toward the unaffordable but attractive “free stuff” of socialism, I cannot justify voting for the Democratic nominee, whoever it might be. While Sec. Clinton is not AS socialist as Sen. Sanders, she has too many personal problems of character and trustworthiness and bad judgment, which will be hard to overcome.

It does appear that Mr. Trump now has a lock on the nomination. He was not my first, second or third preference (or fourth, fifth, sixth etc.), but if he is the Republican nominee, I will either vote for him, or write in your name (if you will serve if elected), or be silent!

A lot depends on how and to what extent he moves to more sensible and less offensive positions, which too often have been poorly thought-out, or designed to stir the passions of the angered newcomers. I refer to those who sat out previous elections to the detriment of Republicans, whom they now blame for not being able to stop Democratic filibusters and override presidential vetoes in the Senate, for lack of a two-thirds majority. What exquisite irony!

If Mr. Trump can begin to show more compassion and empathy and less fury and empty name-calling, and listen to advisors who know how to make government work, he might become a winning candidate. If he keeps going the way he has until now, I fear he will lead a disaster of historic proportions for other Republicans, as in the time before I was Governor. We could surely lose the Supreme Court as well as the presidency, and probably the U.S. Senate and many good governors, through no fault of their own.

If Mr. Trump continues on his hostile campaign, like Sherman’s march across the South, many of us will be devoting our best efforts to trying to save deserving Republican candidates down ballot.

As is obvious, there is no nutshell way to say that. All I can do is take the line from the very end of “Tea and Sympathy.” “Years (make that hours) from now, when you speak of this, and you will ... be kind!”