Marco Rubio Offered The Warning The Republican Party Never Listened To
After a heated primary season marred by constant talks of a contested convention, the Never Trump movement put up their final fight at the start of the Republican National Convention on Monday, only to see their worst fear realized the following day. On Tuesday evening, state after state announced the number of delegates they were awarding Donald Trump, eerily declared by most state representatives as "the next president of the United States." With that, Trump officially became the Republican nominee, and a particular tweet about the RNC from Senator Marco Rubio became the warning the Republican party never heeded.
In his tweet from February, the Florida senator laid out some simple words of advice for his fellow Republicans: "We cannot be a party that nominates someone who refuses to condemn white supremacists and the Ku Klux Klan." Rubio was still pulling to be an alternative at the time, but he would drop out of the race less than a month later, after losing the primary in his home state of Florida to Trump.
And Tuesday night, any hope for an alternative was dashed, as Trump clinched the nomination — and yes, became a nominee who has had major issues disavowing both white supremacists and the KKK.
Known for his loud presence on Twitter, Fortune broke down how Trump has used the site to court white supremacist groups, who make up a sizable portion of his following. A white supremacist was also selected to be a California delegate by the Trump campaign, but his nomination was later called a "clerical error" and he resigned. What's more, Trump also had a now-infamous back-and-forth about former KKK grand wizard David Duke, having originally declined to disavow Duke's support of him.
Despite all of this, Trump's nomination should be seen as no major upset. GOP ideology has finally taken the form of one Mr. Trump — years of telling women, LGBTQ folks, and people of color that they are less than through policy has caught up to them, infiltrated a majority of their base, and now is the big, hulking man who enters the RNC stage with pyrotechnics and "We Are The Champions" blaring in the background.
Sadly, this is no surprise. What will matter is if and how the GOP uses this as an opportunity to restructure itself. If not, George W. Bush may be correct in calling himself potentially the last Republican president.