Author: Helen

The Biggest Losers in Republican History

The Biggest Losers in Republican History

Calmes: The biggest losers — the GOP and Donald Trump

When the last of the 2016 presidential candidates — Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush and Scott Walker — are finished, the Republicans have no problem with nominating Donald Trump.

‘Trump isn’t qualified’. So the statement would go, if the Republican establishment had its way and decided to nominate a person who didn’t have the requisite qualifications.

This has been the line of attack against Trump throughout his campaign and in the media, from “he doesn’t have the temperament” to “he’s a conman”.

And despite all the establishment’s predictions, Trump has indeed been the most popular Republican candidate in recent elections. In fact, as early as January, he was the only major Republican candidate to poll at 3%.

Since then, Trump has risen to the point where his name is mentioned in the top 25 most-commented-on stories in the Newseum Newsroom.

But while his popularity may be a result of his charisma and authenticity, he’s far from the first Republican presidential nominee to go down in flames after winning the nomination.

Here’s a look back at the biggest losers in Republican history.

Ronald Reagan

Presidential elections are decided by who the party selects as its candidate. And whoever wins has a mandate from the voters.

The Reagan effect

Ronald Reagan was the last candidate to win the Republican nomination. And he was the first presidential candidate to win a major party nomination from the South.

As a result, the president’s South Carolina primary victory that year came as a huge shock to the Republican establishment.

As former Ohio Governor George Voinovich noted at the time, Reagan had won a surprising victory in his home state of California. And he had won a surprising victory in the New Hampshire primary in his home state of Ohio.

By winning the California, New Hampshire and Ohio primaries, Reagan had successfully defied “the insiders” and won nomination by the “grass roots”, both the party’s grassroots and its corporate base.

His victories in the primaries had demonstrated that a candidate could win even without winning the popular vote

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