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The newest hit reality show – "NIGHTMARE!"
The set-up: Louis CK, Jerry Seinfeld, Bob Hope, Richard Pryor, Amy Schumer, Louie Anderson and Ellen DeGeneres are crowded around your bed. Each tells the sleeping you a joke and the punch line is the same on each one. They shout in unison, "Republican Presidential Candidate Donald J. Trump."
Then you wake up and, lo and behold, Republican Presidential Candidate Donald J. Trump.
So the nightmare has come true and he actually may be president. The whole thing has made me wonder about prominent conservatives in Wisconsin and whether or not they will support Trump.
I called and emailed some of them, and read what some of them said to other publications.
Here’s a sampling of what Wisconsin Republicans have to say about Trump:
The irascible radio host on WISN who is just as powerful and influential as Charlie Sykes (see below).
"The anti-Trump camel’s back has been broken. I am voting for Donald Trump for president. Google search will reveal that I have called Trump a 'blowhard,' 'buffoon,' 'clown,' 'fraud' and, worst of all, 'liberal.' I don’t retract any of it. But more than half of life’s important choices are between bad options. The alternative to Donald Trump is Hillary Clinton and, as I said, there is that last straw."
Alderman who has been a leading conservative voice on both the Milwaukee County Board and the Milwaukee Common Council.
"I probably will not be voting for a presidential candidate this election. It is just too difficult to wrap my head around what he stands for. He is entertaining as hell, yeah, but president, I’m sorry I just cannot see that!"
Irrepressible sheriff of Milwaukee County and a man who lives in the same cuckoo’s nest as Trump.
"I cannot wait until Jan. 20, 2017, when President Obama leaves the White House for the last time," Clarke said. "And I hope, I pray that Donald J. Trump becomes the next commander-in-chief because we need a president who is going to stand beside us and support us all across the country unambiguously by the way and we know we’re not going to get that out of Mrs. Bill Clinton. I think the saddest day for law enforcement will be if she were to become the President of the United States."
Former lieutenant governor and a highly respected presence in state Republican circles.
"He’s enough of a deal maker that he could talk to people and trust people and he and (House Speaker) Paul Ryan could get along. I think Paul would have a much stronger role in that type of Republican leadership situation than he would with Hillary Clinton."
Distinguished leader in the party, the man who ran the Republican Convention in 1996, a former general counsel to the Republican National Committee and the political grandfather of Scott Walker and Paul Ryan.
"I will not attend the convention because I do not want to be part of a process which results in the nomination of Donald Trump."
Took over as governor when Tommy Thompson left and hasn’t been heard from since his brief time at the helm, explaining why he wasn’t even going to the convention.
"They need people that are going to be very enthusiastic for Donald Trump as props at the convention. You're supposed to stand and cheer and yell for him. I do not have the capability of doing that."
Todd Robert Murphy
One of the most astute Republican strategists of the last 30 years.
"The act of making an informed and thoughtful reflection to not cast a ballot for president is as patriotic as casting a vote. It's not apathy, quite the opposite. It too is a constitutional right the same as voting. I cannot cast a vote for Trump or Hillary Clinton."
Dr. Leanne Olson
Associate Professor of Psychology at Wisconsin Lutheran College.
"Trump is completely unknowable to me (which makes me feel stupid). I can't predict anything that Trump will say or stand for with the singular exception that what he does is motivated to get a rise out of someone. I can't trust him and I won't play that game with our nation. So I decided I just can't figure him out and maybe I'm not so stupid after all."
Prominent Republican strategist who has worked with candidates at every level of state government.
"My fear would be that these walkaways (those who don’t vote) will really hurt the future of the party in fundraising, candidate recruitment, organizational development and other things. That’s a total reflection of Donald Trump."
Dean of the state congressional delegation and a bedrock conservative voice in the House of Representatives.
"All the polls ... show (Trump) losing considerably to Hillary Clinton, and that is going to perhaps cost us the Senate, including Sen. Johnson's seat, and put the House in jeopardy will destroy (Wisconsin) Republicans down ballot if this were to hold."
Smart and powerful WTMJ radio host and a national leader of the Dump Trump movement.
"I’m definitively Never Trump as in never. Obviously I have major policy differences with Trump, but ultimately my opposition is based on his manifest unfitness for the job. His thin-skinned narcissism, ignorance and erratic personality. He can change his positions, but he's unlikely to change his character. This man should not be allowed near the nuclear button. I'm also Never Hillary, so, along with the vast majority of American voters, this will be a pretty depressing election."
Our governor, who took a brief sabbatical from his day job to hang around with Trump, before returning home.
"I stood on the stage in Cleveland and said that I would support the nominee. I’ve said it repeatedly since then and I’ll be supporting the Republican nominee, once that’s officially set at the convention, against Hillary Clinton."
This list is not comprehensive. But all the same …
With a history in Milwaukee stretching back decades, Dave tries to bring a unique perspective to his writing, whether it's sports, politics, theater or any other issue.
He's seen Milwaukee grow, suffer pangs of growth, strive for success and has been involved in many efforts to both shape and re-shape the city. He's a happy man, now that he's quit playing golf, and enjoys music, his children and grandchildren and the myriad of sports in this state. He loves great food and hates bullies and people who think they are smarter than everyone else.
This whole Internet thing continues to baffle him, but he's willing to play the game as long as OnMilwaukee.com keeps lending him a helping hand. He is constantly amazed that just a few dedicated people can provide so much news and information to a hungry public.
Despite some opinions to the contrary, Dave likes most stuff. But he is a skeptic who constantly wonders about the world around him. So many questions, so few answers.