Dear Reluctant Republican,
At a certain point, you will have to admit that if you refuse to vote for the president this time around, you are not doing so for policy reasons.
Let’s be clear, Joe Biden by his own admission wants to be the most progressive president ever, instituting the far-left policies of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Bernie Sanders.
Perhaps you sat out in 2016, still believing Donald Trump was a fake Republican, liable to raise taxes or appoint liberal justices to the Supreme Court. In the same way, maybe this time you’re searching for a different rationalization, trying to talk yourself into accepting narratives you know to be nonsense — “Russian collusion,” or the “authoritarianism” of stopping vandals, looters, and rioters from destroying our beloved cities for example.
You might even feel compelled to accuse the President of “corruption” in Ukraine and then scream “disinformation!” at the first mention that Hunter Biden was making millions there when his father was the vice president of the United States and overseeing Ukraine policy, or blame President Trump for the global pandemic and conveniently forget that Joe Biden was complaining about how “hysterical” and “xenophobic” the president was after he decided to close off travel from China.
But deep down, you know the truth. You know that President Trump has delivered exactly what Republicans and conservatives eagerly supported before 2016 — and then some. This president has cut taxes dramatically, launched the most aggressive deregulation effort since Ronald Reagan, and delivered three years of impressive economic growth and historically low unemployment. The stock market soared, the military was nursed back to strength, and the federal judiciary was remade with hundreds of originalist and conservative jurists — an achievement topped off by President Trump becoming the first president to have three justices confirmed to the Supreme Court in a single term since Richard Nixon.
That reluctance you feel isn’t because you don’t want to vote for more of that. It’s because you fear the social pressures and negative repercussions you’re liable to experience for being one of those Republicans.
That’s understandable. Never in living memory has there been such a sustained, widespread, and self-righteous campaign against a politician and anyone deemed to be among the tens of millions of Americans who voted for him.
With an ever-present social media mob lurking in the digital ether to turn the smallest transgression against orthodoxy into national news, or applaud and validate children when they take journalists up on their calls to ostracize their friends or cut off their parents for stepping out of line, the great slogan of the ‘60s radical is finally fulfilled: the personal has become the political. You might justifiably feel that publicly supporting the president and his policies could — in a very real sense — jeopardize your social standing, your career, and even your family harmony.
I fully understand that voting in the interests of yourself and your country requires more courage this year than ever before in your lifetime.
Luckily, we still enjoy one vital protection against the recrimination so many Americans legitimately fear. It’s one inheritance from our Founding Fathers that remains fully intact even as the people likely to attack you for voting Trump topple their statues and pull their names off of school buildings. It’s the secret ballot.
Take consolation from that on November 3, and do what you know is right — not what you think your “woke” Facebook friend would scold you for not doing. Don’t hand the country to the left just to convince someone else that you’re on “the right side of history.” Tell yourself whatever you need to, but vote for another four years of able leadership and successful policy. Vote for Donald Trump, and if anyone asks, you can always just tell them it’s none of their business.
Sean M. Spicer previously served as White House press secretary, and Chief Strategist and Communications Director of the Republican National Committee. He is the author of the new book, “Leading America: President Trump’s Commitment to People, Patriotism, and Capitalism.”