#NeverTrump has officially gone down in parliamentary flames. There will be no coup in Cleveland. Trump is the GOP nominee. Any further #NeverTrump campaigning is simply assisting Hillary Clinton.
A long-shot, last-ditch attempt by a few Republican delegates to prevent Donald Trump from securing the GOP nomination failed by an overwhelming margin late Thursday night.
Some anti-Trump delegates on the Republican National Convention Rules Committee sought a strategy to unbind convention delegates, allowing them to vote their conscience against Trump even if they were bound to him by primary results. Delegates loyal to Trump and the Republican National Committee fought back by proposing a counter-measure to clarify that all delegates are bound to vote based on the primary results.
The votes came near the end of a marathon 14-hour session of the rules committee to set any changes ahead of next week’s convention to officially nominate Trump as the Republican presidential candidate. The first vote, on the pro-Trump measure to keep delegates bound, passed easily, 87 to 12.
Immediately following that vote, Kendal Unruh, a Colorado delegate who has led the efforts to unbind the delegates, offered her highly anticipated amendment. She gave a speech beforehand calling the ability to vote one’s conscience a “God-given right.”
“The right to conscience is not just something that we’ve decided is a cool idea. It’s something that is the very basis of our nation,” Unruh said. “It is why the pilgrims came here and founded our nation. It is a God-given right to why we have the Bill of Rights.”
Immediately after that, however, Michigan delegate Matt Hall moved to end debate on the measure, and more than two-thirds of the committee, 77 to 21, voted to cut off all debate while some anti-Trump delegates, including Utah Sen. Mike Lee, were still waiting to speak on the matter.
The committee then voted against Unruh’s amendment by voice vote, with the opposition so clear that a recorded vote was deemed unnecessary.
Though there are other potential moves for the anti-Trump candidates that are even longer shots than the rules committee plan, the vote against Unruh’s amendment effectively ended the “Never Trump” movement and sealed Trump’s fate to be nominated here next week.