Audio: Mike Lee unloads on Boehner for "Lucifer" comments about Cruz

Via the Right Scoop, Boehner’s the prime target but I don’t think Lee’s frustration is primarily about Boehner. It’s about the wider establishment capitulating to Trump when there’s still a chance, however small, of delivering Indiana for Cruz and then staging an all-hands-on-deck anti-Trump showing in California to try to deny him 1,237. The party never took Trump seriously last year despite him leading every poll since the day he joined the race and then they did nothing to stop him once it became obvious that he and his fan base were serious. And now, as the coup de grace, at the last possible moment to stop this trainwreck, you’ve got the former dean of the Republican establishment chattering about how Trump, his golf buddy, is worthy of a vote against Hillary but Cruz, the obstructionist yet committed conservative, isn’t. “Trump versus Cruz” was the starkest possible test for the professional GOP of how much they really care about conservatism as an ideology. Trump is probably unelectable and stands guilty of nearly every moral and political vice in the conservative handbook; Cruz, although personally detested by Beltway types, is universally recognized as brilliant, well organized, and committed to the ideology the party claims to support. This is what’s known as an easy call. Yet practically no one in Congress stepped up for Cruz, and now here’s Boehner yesterday actually suggesting that Trump is preferable. And he’s not alone:

Former U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg said Thursday that he could in effect hold his nose and support businessman Donald Trump as his party’s presidential nominee, but he could not say the same about Sen. Ted Cruz…

Gregg, who served for two terms in the Senate, retiring in 2010, said Cruz “is a person of little character. He’s a demagogue’s demagogue and he shouldn’t be trusted with the responsibilities of the office.”…

“I presume I’d vote for the Republican nominee if it is Trump, but Cruz should be nowhere near the presidency,” he said Thursday.

Cruz, not the guy who told a debate audience last month that the military will obey his illegal orders, should be nowhere near the office. Okay. This is the hard reality that Mike Lee’s struggling with in the clip and that grassroots conservatives have been struggling with for months, namely, that conservatism as a philosophy of governance clearly means next to nothing to all sorts of people who claim to subscribe to it, from Republican pols to “conservative” media to grassroots activists. They’ve either gone all-in for Trump cultism or they’ve let their personal pique towards Cruz lead them into preferring a guy who’s unfit for the office by temperament, civic knowledge, and experience. And no matter what happens now — Trump crashes in the general election, Cruz figures out a way to deny him in Cleveland, or whatever weird alternate scenario you can concoct — that fact will remain. Trump could lose 538-0 this fall, retire from public life, and it will still be the case that the “conservative party” consists to no small degree of people who palpably don’t much care about conservatism. Where do Lee and his fellow travelers go from there? Say what you will about the left, at least they really do seem to believe in leftism.

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