'Never Trump' conservative says GOP could pose 'existential threat' to US

Conservative Jerry Taylor said Wednesday on “Rising” that the Republican Party under President TrumpDonald John TrumpActivists highlight Trump ties to foreign autocrats in hotel light display Jose Canseco pitches Trump for chief of staff: ‘Worried about you looking more like a Twinkie everyday’ Dershowitz: Mueller's report will contain 'sins' but no 'impeachable offense' MORE is not in a "healthy place," warning that it could turn into the party of “blood, soil and nationalism" if it doesn't change its course. 

“If the Republican Party continues down this current path, it is going to become the Le Pen party — party of blood and soil and nationalism that we see in Europe, and I think that’s an existential threat to the country,” Taylor told Hill.TV, referring to Marine Le Pen, the president of France's National Rally party, which was previously known as the National Front.

“A healthy United States of America needs two healthy political parties, and right now, the Republican Party is not in a healthy place and that’s why I stay in the party and I stay to fight,” he continued.

Taylor is the president of the Niskanen Center, a moderate think tank that grew out of the libertarian Cato Institute.

The Republican is also one of the leaders of a small group of “Never Trump” conservatives, who frequently appear on cable news to advocate against Trump’s presidency.

Taylor and the Niskanen Center will be hosting a conference next Tuesday to urge the GOP to “reset” from Trump and present ideas for a “post-Trump Republican Party.”

The newly reelected Republican governor of Maryland, Larry Hogan, is poised to give the opening address at the event.

At the conference, Taylor hopes conservatives can come together and forge a new Republican Party rather than returning to the ideals of the old. He hopes, among other issues, the Republican base as a whole will works towards embracing more social justice initiatives. 

“I think we’re trying to forge something new … that's what this conference is hoping to do, to bring together opponents of Trump to not just talk about what they don’t like but to unite around what do they agree [on] and what kind of positive vision they have not only for the GOP but for the country itself,” he said.

Taylor still remains hopeful about the future of the Republican party, citing that throughout history, political parties have always been "in movement and in flux."

—Tess Bonn