Republicans Needs To Choose: The Trump Lane Or The Conservative Lane

Goodbye, Chris.

You did your best in New Hampshire.

And you sure did put a good New Jersey-style hit job on Kid Rubio, whom you out-psyched and out-boxed at the debate last weekend.

But the primary voters of New Hampshire sent you a clear message Tuesday night — quit.

Gov. Chris Christie did the right thing for the Republican Party on Wednesday by taking himself out of the presidential primary race.

It was not a hard decision.

When you finish 6th and can’t reach double digits in a presidential primary, it’s time to start planning your career as a future U.S. Attorney General.

Carly Fiorina also has finally faced reality.

She also “suspended” her hopeless campaign — which is a way to call it quits but still be able to raise money, pay your bills and jump back in if a miracle occurs.

Ben Carson needs to join the rush of losers to the exits — and soon. The good doctor never should have cluttered up the over-cluttered GOP primary race in the first place.

As I said in last week’s column, Republicans are rapidly running out of time if they want to stop the Trump Express. They have to settle on one candidate so all of the party’s conservative voters can unite behind him.

The media likes to say there are three lanes in the GOP primary — the Trump lane, the establishment lane and the outsider lane.

But there are really only two lanes — the Trump lane and everyone else.

The everyone-else lane is now the conservative lane, which includes outsiders Cruz and Carson.

Trump has his lane all to himself — and always will. Except for his own ego, he has no competition that can split up the Trump vote.

He has the same advantage my father had in the 1980 Republican primary, when he was the only conservative candidate in a sea of moderates who were splitting the moderate vote.

The reverse happened in 2008 when John McCain, the only moderate in the primary, won because Huckabee, Romney and Giuliani split the conservative vote.

Meanwhile, this year, even with Christie and Fiorina gone, the remaining candidates are splitting up the conservative vote into six pieces.

Trump captured 35 percent of New Hampshire voters. Kasich had almost 16 percent, and Cruz, Bush and Rubio virtually tied for third with around 11 percent. Fiorina, Christie and Carson collectively got almost 14 percent.

In other words, about 65 percent of New Hampshire voters didn’t want Trump and voted for one kind of conservative or another.

Conservatives have to get out of their own way and choose their one hero to battle Trump before the wave of March primaries, when it’ll be too late.  But it’s not looking good.

In South Carolina and for the near future, even if Carson and someone else quits, it looks like we’re going to have three or four conservative Republicans taking turns beating each other up, while Trump gets his automatic 35 percent.

With Hillary Clinton’s cruise to the Oval Office being sunk by a 74-year-old socialist, the Democrats seem to be trying their best to hand Republicans a victory this fall.

It’ll be a major tragedy if conservatives in the GOP blow their big chance and America ends up with President Trump.

But that would still be better than Hillary.

The GOP Did Good In Iowa

I don’t know how the primaries will turn out in New Hampshire next week.

But I was glad to see Republican voters in Iowa prick some of the air out of the Trump balloon Monday night and lift Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio to the top of the GOP heap.

All Iowans didn’t get caught up in the Trump celebrity or go goofy for the Trump plane.

A lot of them looked at the Donald’s political substance — and realized he didn’t have any. Not in politics, anyway.

Going forward, however, conservatives still have the same problem they’ve had for months. Too many good horses clogging up the race.

They need to find their best horse quickly and ride it. Otherwise, they’ll split the conservative vote again and give the nomination to a moderate or a fake Republican like Trump who won’t win in the fall.

It happened with John McCain in 2008 and again with Mitt Romney in 2012. Too many conservatives in the race splintered the conservative vote.

There were 12 Republicans still trying to win the nomination in Iowa. Eleven of them were virtually interchangeable conservatives. One was a billionaire pretending to be one.

Even with Mike Huckabee, Rand Paul and Rick Santorum dropping out, there are still way too many candidates splitting up the conservative vote.

Ben Carson should be next. And what’s Jim Gilmore waiting for? Where did he come from anyway? And why?

The ex-Virginia Governor got a whopping 12 votes from Iowa caucus-goers — .01 percent. That has to be a Guinness world record for last place in any election. “Other” was chosen by 119 people.

Still, the results in Iowa were encouraging for the Republican Party. If I had to pick a single big winner, I guess it has to be Cruz.

Congratulations to him. He’s good. He’s great. But at the end of Monday night, I think Rubio shined brightest.

He finished a close third to Cruz, plus he gave a great speech after the caucus while Cruz’s speech was too long, too religious and too awful.

Rubio gave the most Reaganesque talk. He spoke to everyone, while Cruz spoke — and spoke — to evangelicals.

Let’s put it this way. If Cruz had been on the old “Gong Show,” he’d have been gonged and yanked from the stage.

I understand why the three governors — Bush, Christie and Kasich, who collectively didn’t get 8 percent of the vote in Iowa — want to stay around for New Hampshire. It’s their last shot.

But if they really want to help the conservatives, it’s time for some of those guys to go home too.

The goal of this primary race is to win back the White House. To do that, Republicans need a message that’s inclusive and welcoming to minorities.

Iowa, in case you didn’t notice, the Republicans are no longer the party of angry old white men.

About 65 percent of caucus votes went to Cruz, Rubio and Carson — Republicans who, last time I looked, are Latino or black.

Compare that with the Democrats, who like to pass themselves off as the all-inclusive party that speaks for minorities.

Now that that 53-year-old whippersnapper Martin O’Malley has dropped out of their primary, Democrats literally have an old white guy trying to beat out an old white gal.

It wouldn’t hurt if once in a while the mainstream news media pointed out the irony of the Democrats running two old fogies for president whose leftist policies were discredited in the last century.

Meanwhile, the Republicans’ diversity is a huge plus. It needs to be publicized and applauded from the rooftops by the GOP.

Based on what happened in Iowa, the Party of Ronald Reagan looks like it might have a conservative future after all. It’ll just have a different hue.

It’s The Negativity, Stupid

Watching all the negativity flying around the stage at the Democratic Town Hall Forum the other night, something struck me.

Why, after watching Hillary and Bernie go after each other’s left-liberal throats, would anyone ever want to vote for either one of them?

They had nothing but rotten things to say about the other.

Hillary’s too cozy with Wall Street.

Bernie’s too soft on the NRA and naive about negotiating with Iran.

Hillary’s insufficiently progressive and takes obscene speaking fees from Goldman Sachs.

Bernie’s expensive progressive ideas will never make it in the real world.

Etc. Etc.

The Democrat debate got so dirty that Hillary has had to call her pet attack dog David Brock in from the kennel and let him off his leash.

Brock is the nasty former right-wing hit man whose pro-Clinton super PAC has sent out emails equating Bernie Sanders with dead Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez.

His PAC has also attacked Bernie for not including enough “people of color” in his nice feel-good TV ad featuring Paul Simon’s song “America.”

Somebody actually counted the blacks and Latinos in the video and declared that Bernie was insufficiently diversity-minded.

Now, the dirty dogs in Brock’s pack are running ads calling for Sanders to release his medical records.

The Republican presidential finger-pointers are just as negative, thanks mostly to attacker-in-chief Donald Trump.

Actually, since there are more attackers and attackees, and since the attacks are constant and usually more personal, and since Trump is mixed up in all of it, the GOP negativity is much more self-harmful.

It’s been hard to keep track of who’s been hitting whom in the Republican primary brawl, but here are just some helpful headlines from the Internet:

– Trump: Ted Cruz flip-flopped on birthright citizenship

– New Ted Cruz ad attacks Donald Trump’s ‘New York Values’

– Bush: Rubio, Cruz are followers, not leaders on Syria

– Carson questions authenticity of Trump’s faith

– Rubio hits Trump’s debate ‘theatrics’

– Trump hits Cruz on loans, citizenship: ‘Did he borrow unreported loans from Canadian banks?’

– Trump, Rubio and evangelicals target Cruz as Iowa caucus nears

– Kasich super PAC attacks Trump immigration plan

– Carly Fiorina repeats after girl: ‘Donald Trump’s a moron’

– Christie on Trump skipping GOP debate: Leaders have ‘got to show up’

– Pro-Bush super PAC hammers Rubio for credit card controversy

– Rand Paul: ‘Trump is a delusional narcissist and an orange-faced windbag’

Rand Paul must have hired a new writer, probably a sophomore in high school. But what’s going on is not funny.

We’re all being played for suckers.

After we hear months of this nonstop Republican-on-Republican bashing, we’re supposed to forget about it and vote for one of these bums to be our next president?

They don’t like each other, for both good reasons and stupid reasons. But I bet half of the GOP candidates won’t have the stomach to vote for the nominee in the fall.

If you believe all their negative ads and what the candidates say about each other and their ideas, it makes sense. There’s not a darn person worth voting for.

The ‘White Actors Matter’ Academy Awards

“Black Lives Matter” — except in Tinseltown.

The Hollywood liberals who give Academy Awards to their friends got called out for their lack of diversity this week.

It seems this year the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences couldn’t find a single actor of color worthy of an Oscar nomination for a lead or supporting role.

Its 6,000-odd members went 0 for 20 in their search. For the second straight year.

Have Denzel Washington, Jamie Foxx, Will Smith, Morgan Freeman, Don Cheadle, Laurence Fishburne, Cuba Gooding Jr., Djimon Hounsou, Forest Whitaker, Octavia Spencer, Samuel L. Jackson, Jennifer Hudson, Angela Bassett, Halle Berry and Queen Latifah taken the last two years off?

Spike Lee said because black actors were snubbed again, he was boycotting the Academy Awards gala next month.

He’s been supported by Jada Pinkett Smith, who is understandably miffed that her husband Will wasn’t honored for his role in “Concussion.”

And Snoop Dog, leftie documentary-maker Michael Moore and a few others who don’t care if they ever eat lunch in Beverly Hills again are joining the boycott of the White Actors Matter Awards.

Being accused of insufficient diversity by black artists couldn’t have happened to a rottener bunch of liberal hypocrites.

Hollywood is the most liberal town on the planet. The left controls it and tries to make every anti-American, anti-conservative, anti-business movie it can.

Black actors love Hollywood — or they did until they started to notice that its creative community shows its true colors when it comes time to hand out best-actor awards.

Since Sidney Poitier won in 1963 for “Lilies of the Field,” only Denzel Washington, Jamie Foxx and Forest Whitaker have won for best actor.

Halle Berry’s Oscar in 2001 for “Monster’s Ball” remains the first and only time a black woman won for best actress.

Maybe Spike Lee and his celebrity allies have finally learned how liberals work.

Maybe they’ve figured out what millions of ordinary blacks around the country need to start figuring out about the Democrat Party.

The liberal left in Washington pretends to support blacks, but they only use them to get reelected or maintain power. The rest of the time, they take them for granted.

Hollywood liberals do the same thing. They usually use black actors to prove how liberal they are.

That’s why a movie like “12 Years a Slave” gets made and why it won so big at the Oscars in 2014 — it was a political twofer.

It proved how liberal Hollywood was, plus it showed how rotten and racist America was.

“The Butler” delivered the same message. Then, for good measure, it unfairly made my father out to be a racist. It was so awful it was snubbed by the Academy.

Some say blacks are shortchanged at Oscar time because the voting Academy is not as diverse as the acting academy. An L.A. Times story reported that Academy members are 94 percent white, 77 percent male and 2 percent black.

That’s pathetic, and it’s good that the Academy has been shamed by this year’s all-white nominations into promising to fix that imbalance.

But Spike Lee says it’s not the Academy that’s the problem. It’s the whole film industry.

He says there aren’t enough good movies about blacks or for black actors because there aren’t any black executives at the studios who can make the decision to green light them.

To fix that injustice, Lee has basically called for an affirmative-action plan for the movie business. He wants someone to force Hollywood to meet a quota of minority films.

It’s a lousy idea that will never happen, but maybe it should.

A quota wouldn’t produce more Oscars for black actors. But it’d be a lot of fun to see how Hollywood liberals like being forced to abide by one of the bad laws they think everyone else in America should be forced to follow.

The State Of The Union – As Usual

If you missed the president’s final State of the Union message Tuesday night, don’t worry.

It might have been billed as historic, but you didn’t miss much.

There were no surprises. No shocks. No awe. Nothing historic or memorable.

It was the usual Obama setup — “We have to find a way to come together, end the government gridlock and make America better and stronger” — followed by the implication that Washington isn’t working the way it should because Republicans in Congress are mean, stubborn or stupid.

In seven years, Obama hasn’t changed the country, not for the better anyway. He hasn’t changed his leadership style, either.

Remember back in 2009, three days after he was sworn in, when Barack Obama, his egocentric advisers and the congressional leaders of both parties met to discuss how to frame a gigantic stimulus bill working its way through Congress?

That’s when Obama famously said to Republican Whip Eric Cantor, “Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won.”

We didn’t know it then, but that snippy quip betrayed a lot about the way the hope-and-change president plays ball.

It’s my football, darn it; and if you’re not going to play the way I want, I’m going to take my ball and go home.

Obama has run his administration for seven years with that “I won, you lost and I get what I want” game plan.

He’s right. There is a great divide between the two parties in Washington.

He ought to know, because he’s as much to blame for it as anyone.

It’s hard to find an example where he was willing to sit down and come to terms with conservatives and Republicans in Congress.

And how many times did he go home after he didn’t get what he wanted from Congress and sign an executive action that got him what he wanted?

My father looked at politics like a football game, too. But he understood throwing Hail Marys all the time wasn’t a winning strategy.

He knew you actually had to move down the field slowly, and if you got 10 yards each play, eventually you’d reach the end zone.

The great liberal-conservative political divide that supposedly harms our country is not going to be closed between now and November. It’ll have to start with whoever the new leader is in January of 2017.

Whoever it is, the next president will have to act a lot more like Ronald Reagan and a lot less like Barack Obama.

My father disagreed greatly with Tip O’Neill and Ted Kennedy, but he always looked at the big picture. He was always asking, “How can we work together to get this done?”

If Ronald Reagan doesn’t sit down with Tip, we don’t get the tax break of 1981.

If Bill Clinton doesn’t sit down with Newt Gingrich and a Republican Congress in 1994, we don’t get welfare reform and a balanced budget.

Early next year, President Trump, President Sanders or President X will be all fired up about fixing immigration.

Whoever it is, when he meets with Congress, he should not take the “all-or-nothing” Obama approach, but do what Ronald Reagan or even Bill Clinton would do.

He should bring everybody in and find areas in the immigration bill where there is bipartisan agreement.

Then, Congress should write a new bill covering those areas of agreement, pass it, have the president sign it and immediately begin the process of writing a better, more comprehensive immigration bill.

Everyone likes to see a long Hail Mary thrown into the end zone. But as QB, Obama should have learned after seven seasons — but didn’t — they almost never win the game.