The second function of a new third party would be to give the sane right-leaning media something constructive to do. While much of the right’s broadcast media is on the Trump Train—including a lot the talk radio entertainers and Fox News talking heads—very little of the right’s print and online media is budging in his direction. An informal survey of my colleagues over the past few days shows that very few have abandoned their #NeverTrump stance or seem likely to do so. (No one affirmed that with more style than this.) For people who make a living off of nothing but the force and clarity of their ideas, Trump is too much of an intellectual embarrassment. We just can’t make ourselves support him.
For us, Trump vs. Hillary is the Iran-Iraq War of politics. It’s a shame they can’t both lose, and there’s neither fun nor profit in cataloguing the carnage. This means that a lot of us are going to drop out of commenting on electoral politics for the next six months, because we have no one who is even close to being a standard-bearer for our ideas.
A properly constructed third party would give us someone and something to talk about in a positive way. I don’t mean this just as a Full Employment Act for Disgruntled Pundits. I mean this as a way that we can continue to advocate for our political principles in a year when ideas and principles have gone AWOL.
Most of all, a third party could provide the germ for a new, improved ideological coalition on the right.