Bill Weld Dislikes Donald Trump So Much That He's Sort Of Giving Up Hope On This Whole Libertarian Thing
Well, here's a little October surprise for you — the latest in a seemingly endless string of them. At a press conference in Boston, Massachusetts, Libertarian vice presidential nominee Bill Weld told voters to pick Hillary Clinton, warning that Donald Trump is "not stable" and represents "the worst of American politics."
Weld never actually mentioned Clinton by name, to be clear, but the message he was sending was plain as day. First thanking Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson and the party for doing him the honor of being on the ticket, Weld quickly segued into expressing his grave fears for the state of the race between the two major parties. But this wasn't one of those false equivalency, both-sides-do-it statements. On the contrary, he went straight for Trump.
After praising Johnson and the Libertarians' strides toward ending "the two-party monopoly," Weld said that he "would not have stepped out of the swirl of the campaign to make this statement if I did not fear for our country, as I do." He then set about urging any voters who are struggling to pick between the two major party candidates ― Republicans in particular, some of whom were admirers of Weld's hugely successful stint as Massachusetts governor ― not to let themselves be swayed by Trump's "charisma" and "intellectual quickness."
After careful observation and reflection, I have come to believe that Donald Trump, if elected President of the United States, would not be able to stand up to this pressure and this criticism without becoming unhinged and unable to perform competently the duties of his office.Mr. Trump has some charisma and panache, and intellectual quickness. These qualities can be entertaining. Yet more than charisma, more even than intellectual ability, is required of a serious candidate for this country’s highest office. A serious candidate for the Presidency of the United States must be stable, and Donald Trump is not stable.
Weld went on to characterize Trump's behavior throughout the campaign as that of a small child, the likes of which parents would refuse to tolerate while sitting around a dinner table, before remarking on what he considers the Trump campaign's core goal: to stir up hatred, envy, and resentment.
From the beginning of his campaign, Mr. Trump has conjured up enemies. First it was 11 million criminals in our midst, all bent on obtaining the benefits of citizenship, at our expense. Over time, the enemies became any trading partner of the United States. He says they are nothing but foreigners seeking to threaten our livelihoods. Now we have reached the point where his idea of America’s enemies includes almost anyone who talks or looks different from him. The goal of the Trump campaign, from the outset, has been to stir up envy, resentment, and group hatred.
Needless to say, this is a staunch and firm statement against both Trump as a person and the entire vision for America that his campaign has put forth. It's also notable in that it seems to confirm that Weld is wary of the notion of his ticket benefiting Trump in any way on Election Day ― back in September, Weld had to deny a report by Carl Bernstein that he was considering dropping out of the race and throwing his support behind Clinton.
Obviously, it's not as though that's what he's doing here. He'll still be on the ballot with Johnson in all 50 states, and there are no indications in his statement that he plans to leave the ticket before Nov. 8. But nonetheless, he made an impassioned plea to all the Trump-wary, fence-sitting moderate Republicans everywhere. And considering what a popular and widely respected governor he was, that could make a big difference.