Tuesday, Kellyanne Conway appeared on Fox News' Hannity to discuss President-elect Donald Trump's transition into the White House. During the segment, host Sean Hannity said that many of his viewers are disturbed by the potential selection of Mitt Romney as Secretary of State. Predictably, Conway's answer was ridiculous.
HANNITY: "My email has been blowing up over the speculation that Governor Mitt Romney, who met with Donald Trump, might get the Secretary of State position. And a lot of people are beyond mystified considering all the horrible things, and the effort that he helped lead to smear and hurt Donald Trump..."
CONWAY: "...In terms of Governor Romney, I think the Secretary of State position is such that--and all of the cabinet positions--you have to be qualified and capable, number one. Number two, you have to be loyal to what President-elect Trump has said his vision of the world, and his agenda is in his first 100 days or so."
HANNITY: "So if you call him a fraud and a huckster, and whatever else...it was horrible. Just awful."
CONWAY: "I just want to say generally, apart from Governor Romney, that there were a lot of 'Never Trumpers' that were 'Never Trump' up until the last moment. Go read their twitter feeds, go pull the tape of what they were saying on TV cameras, and in print...they wanted to pile on, and instead of helping the nominee of their Party, they piled on. And in terms of a diverse cabinet--I'm all for diversity, but I think maybe one 'Never Trumper' is enough, so let's not get two, three, five in there..."
There are three critical points to consider regarding "Never Trump" politicians joining the president-elect's team.
1. Trump Has Said Just as Many "Horrible" Things About Them
Sean Hannity and Kellyanne Conway are troubled by all the "horrible" things potential cabinet picks said about Donald Trump. What about the horrible things Trump said about them?
Donald Trump is allegedly considering Dr. Ben Carson for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). During the primaries, he compared Carson to a child molester, and mocked his faith conversion story.
Donald Trump recently met with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX). Rumor has it that he's considering Cruz as a potential SCOTUS pick. Trump mocked the appearance of Cruz's wife, Heidi; he implied Cruz's father, Rafael, was involved in the JFK assassination; he questioned Cruz's Christian faith; he pushed the false birther argument; and he called Cruz a liar repeatedly.
Even Mitt Romney wasn't spared Trump's insults. In 2012, Trump called Romney's immigration plan "crazy" and "maniacal."
2. Trump is Reaching Out
Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, and Mitt Romney each have grounds to avoid Trump at all costs. He's a toxic figure. However, as Trump himself said in his acceptance speech: "For those who have chosen not to support me in the past--of which there were a few people--I am reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country."
Trump said he wants bygones to be bygones. As someone who has never run for elected office in his life, and is now the leader of the free world, he's going to need help from those with more experience. Both Romney and Cruz have more knowledge and experience regarding the Constitution and the workings of the government than Trump ever will. For him to consider Romney and Cruz despite what was said and done in the past shows some modicum of maturity.
3. They're Letting Go of the Past and Protecting the Future
On the other hand, for Ted Cruz and Mitt Romney to openly work with Donald Trump also shows maturity and foresight. They know that Trump needs assistance, and despite their misgivings about the man himself, they're willing to work with him. It's also quite possible that they believe their expertise can help shape Trump's policy into something more cohesive and conservative, thus protecting the country from the radicalism and incoherent policy ideas he displayed on the campaign trail.
Trump needs people around him who have the depth of policy knowledge that he lacks. Unfortunately for him, many of the most qualified people didn't support his run for the presidency. However, if Trump, Romney, et al., refuse to let resentment fester, and rather allow maturity to govern their decisions, Trump's tenure as president has a chance at some success.