After footage showing Republican candidate Donald Trump bragging about groping and attempting to have sex with women was released on Friday, many members of the Republican Party are calling for him to drop out of the race.
However, doing so would annihilate any chance the party has at occupying the White House.
There is approximately one month left until Election Day. The GOP can’t waste its time scrambling to replace a candidate who refuses to play by the rules.
“Donald Trump does not represent me or my party,” former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina said in the aftermath of the video’s release. “Today I ask Donald Trump to step aside and for the (Republican National Convention) to replace him with (Indiana) Gov. Mike Pence.”
Even if by some miracle the GOP was able to unite behind a replacement like Pence, it is far too late to ensure they are accurately represented in the polls.
In some locations, early voting has already begun. Citizens who requested mail-in ballots receive them 45 days before the general elections. The fact is that Trump remains on the ballot.
To condemn him now and attempt to grasp for a more conventional candidate would simply split votes.
Seventy-four percent of Republican voters want party officials to continue to support Trump, while only 13 percent want the party to drop him, according to a Politico poll.
This is already a nail-biting election. The two candidates are neck-in-neck and many speculate the influence of third-party voters may cause 2016 to mirror 2000, when President George W. Bush barely made the cut thanks to a small fraction of liberal voters splitting their vote between Democratic nominee Al Gore and Green Party nominee Ralph Nader.
Republicans welcome this repeat of history as their voters are, though largely begrudgingly, still behind Trump. As a result the heat is solely on Clinton who has to capture the elusive supporters of Bernie Sanders, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein.
The GOP does not want those tables to turn. If it throw a smooth-talking, Bible-toting, Reagan idolizer like Pence into the mix as Trump’s replacement it will quickly see voters jumping ship. Not enough to give them a win, but enough to undoubtedly rip the presidency from Trump’s grasp.
Trump has his share of loyal, die-hard supporters. Like many of Sander’s fans, they will not abandon their anti-establishment candidate. And yes, Trump’s lewd and utterly disgusting comments isolated voters. But not enough to ensure Clinton will win the election.
Clinton is only leading Trump head-to-head by four points in the polls, 45 to 41 percent, according to Politico. And despite essentially encouraging sexual harassment and assault, Trump unbelievably still has a very good shot at being our next leader.
More than 160 Republican leaders have come out against Trump. Unfortunately, it’s too little, too late.
“Nothing that has happened in the last 48 hours is surprising to me or many others,” Ohio Gov. John Kasich said in a statement. “The actions of the last day are disgusting, but that’s not why I reached this decision, it has been an accumulation of his words and actions that many have been warning about. I will not vote for a nominee who has behaved in a manner that reflects so poorly on our country. Our country deserves better.”
Kasich is only stating the obvious. Trump does not represent the majority of what the GOP claims to stand for. Yet, here he is as the GOP nominee. Republicans, you’ve made your bed, it’s time to lie in it. You can’t change the sheets four weeks before Election Day.
Breanne Williams is a senior majoring in mass communications.