The San Diego Union-Tribune editorial board recommended on June 2 that Republican voters write in President Ronald Reagan (who died in 2004) as their choice in California's June 7 GOP primary.
The newspaper believes the write-in vote would send a message to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, whom the editorial board wrote is "unfit to lead the free world."
The paper added:
We can’t endorse Trump for reasons we’ve documented repeatedly: belligerence, casual cruelty, incoherence on policy issues. We can’t recommend voters don’t vote at all because that’s a waste, and we can’t suggest voting for another candidate because it accomplishes nothing. ...
Today, the principles of the party of Ronald Reagan are as relevant as ever: a stable border, a strong military and economic policy focused on low taxes, less bureaucracy and limited regulation.
Those are not the principles of Trump, who promises to build a border wall, recommends torture and killing terrorists’ families and speculates about reneging on our debts.
In March, POLITICO noted the similarities between Reagan and Trump: Both appealed to their base's racial antipathy, talked about world affairs in simplistic terms, had pro-choice stands at one time, were former Democrats, communicated well with audiences, had some show biz background and had strong support from conservative Christians even though they were both divorced.
The San Diego Union-Tribune wrote:
Reagan never gave a speech that didn’t invoke America’s greatness. "Tear down this wall," the Great Communicator famously once said. "The wall cannot withstand freedom."
Trump is the Great Excommunicator. He wants Muslims banned from the country; a wall built around our southern border; global deals ripped up and renegotiated; American made 'great again' through isolationism. ...
If you are voting in the GOP primary Tuesday, write in Ronald Reagan for president.
Maybe Trump will get the message.
According to New York Magazine's Frank Rich this week, there are more similarities between Trump and Reagan:
Both have marketed the same brand of outrage to the same angry segments of the electorate, faced the same jeering press, attracted some of the same battlefront allies (Roger Stone, Paul Manafort, Phyllis Schlafly), offended the same elites (including two generations of Bushes), outmaneuvered similar political adversaries, and espoused the same conservative populism built broadly on the pillars of jingoistic nationalism, nostalgia, contempt for Washington, and racial resentment.