A war within the GOP: How this year’s primary shows the weaknesses in the system

By Morgan Levy ’19

The year is 2016. As the spectacle of an election continues to progress, a battle has begun starring Donald Trump versus Ted Cruz and John Kasich. In a desperate attempt to stop Donald Trump, Cruz and Kasich have openly declared their alliance.

Each candidate has informed the public that they will stop campaigning in states which the other candidate is likely to win. That’s not confusing at all.

This came as quite a surprise. As Rebecca Berg of Real Clear Politics writes “It’s likely the surprise détente between Ted Cruz and John Kasich in three upcoming primaries was as much a cue to super PACs and outside groups as it was to voters, lending clear direction to anti-Donald Trump forces hustling to keep the celebrity billionaire from the GOP nomination.” But is it really going to work?

The problem is that this solution is too little, too late. In an article from The Atlantic titled “Why the Cruz-Kasich Alliance Will Fail,” Andrew McGill points out that “this is all exceptionally squishy to forecast. After all, who is to say that Kasich and Cruz voters will play along with this bargain? It’s a lot to ask an electorate to pick you for president. These two men are going even further, essentially telling voters to cast ballots for another guy, so a third guy won’t win, so they’ll have a shot at winning later, maybe.”

This alliance is a product of this spectacle of an election. It’s sad to think two candidates have to fight the third one, because of the large percentage of Americans who see this candidate as an evil figure. The desperation to stop Trump is so strong that extreme measures are being taken to game our primary system. Things have gotten so bad that voters are practically begging for a contested convention.

Our whole primary system is a mess to begin with. It’s practically a course in itself to keep straight caucuses, winner take all, states where delegates are divided, whether voters have to be registered members of the political parties, and more. The path to 1,237 delegates is much more complicated than it has to be. A system that is supposed to support the rights of the people is way too confusing for the majority of the people to even understand. As the voters grow more apathetic, the battles between candidates get even more headed, and our nation makes absolutely no progress toward prosperity.

I was supposed to vote this week in the Pennsylvania primaries. But, considering my frustration toward this election as a whole, that never happened.