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Budowsky: The conservative civil war

Budowsky: The conservative civil war
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President Trump has triggered a conservative civil war that divides prominent conservatives, pitting those who support Trump against those who believe that he is destroying principled conservatism and attacking cardinal values of Americanism that have long united America and believers in democracy everywhere.

While Trump proclaims the legacy of Abraham Lincoln is “questionable,” a substantial and rising number of prominent principled conservatives are openly saying he must be defeated.

While Trump leads the fight to keep military bases named after Confederate figures who led the war against America to continue slavery, the principled conservatives, along with an unprecedented galaxy of past and current military figures and civil rights leaders, champion racial justice and oppose Trump’s attempt to misuse American troops to “dominate” American communities.

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While Trump leads the fight to keep the American people divided against each other, retired Marine Corps general and former Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisOvernight Defense: Austin takes helm at Pentagon | COVID-19 briefing part of Day 1 agenda | Outrage over images of National Guard troops in parking garage Senate confirms Austin to lead Pentagon under Biden Overnight Defense: House approves waiver for Biden's Pentagon nominee | Biden to seek five-year extension of key arms control pact with Russia | Two more US service members killed by COVID-19 MORE condemns Trump’s three years of deliberately dividing our nation and is applauded by principled conservatives, civil rights leaders, liberals, moderates and all good people who want justice and national unity over injustice and national division.

Among the enormously profound implications of the Trump presidency that alarm a majority of Americans across the ideological spectrum, it is indescribably important and politically powerful that this battle is joined by many of the most respected principled conservatives in America.

Washington Post columnist George Will, a true heir to the conservative tradition of President Ronald Reagan and the great conservative columnist William F. Buckley, has not only called for the defeat of Trump in the election but the defeat of those Senate Republicans who march in lockstep behind his abuses and wrongs.

Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson, a principled conservative who served under former President George W. Bush, similarly warned of the dangerous consequences of reelecting Trump.

MSNBC host Joe ScarboroughCharles (Joe) Joseph ScarboroughScarborough says he's considering legal action against Trump over conspiracy tweets Sacking the Capitol proves free speech is in trouble Scarborough calls for arrest of Trump, Giuliani and Trump Jr. for insurrection against US MORE, a principled conservative who served as a Republican congressman from Florida, has been steadfast warning about Trump’s dishonesty, blunders, contempt for science and national divisiveness.

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Bush offered a brilliant and sweeping alarm bell about Trump’s presidency in 2017 that condemned bullying and prejudice in politics that violates what America stands for and divides America from the rest of the democratic world.

Shortly before Bush spoke, the late and great Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainArizona GOP censures top state Republicans McCain, Flake and Ducey Whoopi Goldberg wears 'my vice president' shirt day after inauguration Budowsky: Democracy won, Trump lost, President Biden inaugurated MORE (R-Ariz.) condemned Trump’s “half-baked, spurious nationalism” in a speech that offered high praise for former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenDC residents jumped at opportunity to pay for meals for National Guardsmen Joe Biden might bring 'unity' – to the Middle East Biden shouldn't let defeating cancer take a backseat to COVID MORE and called for restoring America’s leadership of the free world.

George ConwayGeorge ConwayGeorge Conway: Trump's 'influence will wane as he fades into history as a pariah' George Conway: Georgia call shows Trump is 'delusional,' 'desperate' George Conway calls Meadows a 'moron' and a 'disgrace' MORE, a principled conservative attorney, repeatedly condemns Trump for actions that violate conservative values and American norms. Conway helped found one of the most important groups in the 2020 campaign, the Lincoln Project, named after the president Trump shamefully criticized.

The Lincoln Project, which is steadfastly determined to defeat Trump in the election, includes leading figures who are widely respected in conservative and Republican circles. John Weaver formerly worked for President George H.W. Bush and McCain. Steve Schmidt formerly worked for George W. Bush and McCain. Rick Wilson is a longtime and highly respected Republican consultant.

These patriots risked their careers to stand up for their values and their hope that true conservatives, Republicans and Americans would be saved from the dangers of Trump.

This conservative civil war involves principled conservatives who, along with principled liberals and moderates, believe there are core values that embody patriotic Americanism.

America does not apply the Insurrection Act against peaceful protesters who are widely praised by current and former American commanders. America does not divide migrant children from their moms and dads and imprison them in cages. America does not divide citizens race against race. America does not attack democratic allies or seek campaign support from Russian dictators.

American presidents do not praise foreign dictators, insult democratic allies, attack our free press, promote dangerous drugs and slander political opponents like juvenile delinquents on Twitter.

America rejects the politics of prejudice, hatred, bullying and deceit that principled conservatives, to their historic credit, seek to defeat in November.

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Texas) and former Rep. Bill Alexander (D-Ark.), who was chief deputy majority whip of the House of Representatives. He holds an LLM in international financial law from the London School of Economics.