The Republican Establishment insists that presidential front-runner Donald Trump is not a true conservative. Apparently, Phyllis Schlafly didn’t get the email.
Schlafly, a pillar of the 20th-century conservative movement whose name is virtually synonymous with conservative philosophy, has endorsed Trump over all of the Establishment’s “conservative” candidates.
“It sounds like Donald Trump is the only one who has any fight in him. He will fight for the issues that we really care about and are very hot at the present time, such as the immigration issue. I don’t see anyone else who’s eager to fight,” she told WorldNetDaily.
She went so far as to call Trump the “last hope for America.”
The move to back Trump was in part spurred by another failure of Republicans in Congress to stand up to Democrats — acquiescing last week to a nearly $1.1-trillion omnibus spending bill and more than half a trillion in new tax cuts.
“This is a betrayal of the grassroots and of the Republican Party,” she said, “We thought we were electing a different crowd to stand up for America, and they didn’t. We’re extremely outraged by what Congress has done. Nancy Pelosi couldn’t have engineered it any better. I think the people are going to react by electing Donald Trump.”
Schlafly, a strong supporter of traditional family values, was a fierce critic of the feminist movement that began to germinate in the 1960s, culminating in efforts that were instrumental in killing off a proposed women’s Equal Rights Amendment. Her seminal 1964 book, “A Choice Not an Echo,” opposed the GOP Establishment and its chosen presidential nominee, Nelson Rockefeller, while helping nominate Barry Goldwater. She was a Ronald Reagan friend and early supporter, a social conservative whose aid was critical to Reagan’s victories.
The endorsement puts Schlafly at odds with Republican mainstreamers who argue that Trump is not a true conservative because he doesn’t toe the party line on issues like immigration and foreign policy. Many also assert that because he has previously taken allegedly liberal stances on health care, trade and taxes —- and because he once invited Hillary Clinton to his wedding — he is disqualified from being considered a conservative.
Writers from the National Review, the Wall Street Journal, and various neocon outfits have questioned Trump’s conservatism. But Schlafly, with her nearly unmatched status in the conservative movement, gives Trump conservative credibility that can’t be matched by their criticisms.
Unless they want to make the case that Schlafly isn’t a conservative either, they might as well excommunicate Reagan.