The Election: #nevertrump versus #neverhillary

Really, it's very difficult to find anything good to say about this election.  But I'll try.

Somewhere even before the candidates were finally chosen, the hashtags #nevertrump and #neverhillary appeared on social media.  The hashtags are headings to collect in one place the writings of people who refuse to support the candidate in question, and who advocate that others should do the same.  But if you take a look at the discussions aggregated under the two hashtags, you quickly realize that the two represent very different phenomena.

First, the #nevertrump phenomenon.  It very substantially consists of Republicans and conservatives, including prominent ones, who find either Mr. Trump's character, or his positions on certain issues, or both, to be disqualifying from the Presidency.  The Hill back in August published a long list of over one hundred prominent Republicans who had stated a "never Trump" position.  The list included presidential candidates (Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush), numerous Senators and Congressmen, Governors, top-ranking pundits (e.g., columnist George Will, editors Bill Kristol and Stephen Hayes of The Weekly Standard), major Republican donors (e.g., Paul Singer of Elliott Management), and others.

One might agree or disagree with these people on whether their position constitutes a good political tactic that would lead to a superior outcome for the country.  (After all, the most likely result of many Republicans repudiating Trump will be the election of Hillary.)  But clearly these are serious people who are genuinely concerned about getting the best outcome for the country and its people.

And #neverhillary?  Almost everything you can find about that phenomenon consists of Trump supporters advocating that people should not support the Democratic candidate.  How about the reciprocal of #nevertrump?  Is there such a thing as a group of prominent Democrats -- or even one prominent Democrat -- publicly saying that they just can't support Mrs. Clinton?  If there is, I can't find it.  Back on August 29, Marc Thiessen wrote a column in the Washington Post asking "Where Are The #NeverHillary Democrats?" and noting that he couldn't find any.  The intervening two months haven't caused any to turn up.

Now, that's rather remarkable.  I mean, as bad as Trump's flaws are, are Hillary's any less so?  Compromising national security to that your emails will be inaccessible to FOIA requests -- emails that will then reveal the workings of the pay-to-play Clinton Foundation?  Destroying documents after the Congressional subpoena has been served?  (No client I ever had would have survived in his or her job after doing that.)  Using a "foundation" to support a personal lifestyle of private planes and top hotels, let alone to arrange tens of millions of dollars of supposedly "independent" personal income from donors with a clear interest in influencing a Secretary of State/soon-to-be presidential candidate?  And not one prominent Democrat is sufficiently troubled by any of it to publicly proclaim an inability to support this person?  

It does turn out that there is at least one group of Democrats in the #neverhillary camp.  Of course, this is the unreconstructed Bernie supporters.  Here is a letter from a Harvard freshman to that group of #neverhillary Democrats.  It seems that most of the people in this group are young "millennials," and probably their biggest issue is ballooning college debt and Bernie's promise of free college for all.  Perhaps in their minds they have convinced themselves that in advocating for this issue they are looking out for the good of the country and its people.  A more honest way of looking at it is that they just want to get in on the infinite pile of free government handout money before it all gets handed out to somebody else.

Well, from this we learn something.  After all, Hillary has no particular political vision that anyone can perceive.  What she stands for is continuation and ongoing growth of all government spending and support with taxpayer money of all Democratic lobby groups.  So what we learn is that, for the left-leaning voters in general and all prominent Democrats in particular, far and away the over-riding value is protecting the continuation of the government gravy train for themselves and their crowd.  OK, it's demoralizing.  But if this election has accomplished on useful thing, it is to make that conclusion abundantly clear.