by Paul Moomjean

And then there were two … I mean three. Look, I love John Kasich, but he is a fool if he thinks he can ride some wave to the convention and believe the Grand Old Party will anoint him over Donald “I’m Very Rich” Trump or Ted “Carpet Bomb The Middle East” Cruz. Kasich has one objective: to deny either man the 1,237 delegates needed and allow for the Republican Party to pick the nominee and vice president. Obviously, the problem with that is, if the establishment goes into the general election without Trump or Cruz (depending on how close they got to locking-in the nomination) as Hillary Clinton’s foil, 50 percent of the registered supporters of “the gruesome twosome” will walk away, leaving Kasich with the possibility of only winning Ohio in November. No one has been more critical of Trump or Cruz than I have. They aren’t really Republicans. They’re their own party. Both think they’re the heir to Ronald Reagan. Truth is, Kasich is much more in line with the moderate stances of Reagan. No matter what happens, this year’s GOP primary was a disaster from the start, and the person to blame, and to be removed from his leadership perch, is Reinhold Richard “Reince” Priebus, the current chairman of the Republican National Committee. He’s the guilty one, your honor. And he’s the one that needs to step aside now before the real circus begins.

“What could he have done differently?” you ask; let’s start with how he could have prevented 17 people fighting for stage time back in August. He was never going to stop Trump from running. Fine. But he could have figured out a better strategy. Say what you want about the chairwoman of the Democratic Party Debbie Wasserman Schultz, but at least she made sure their No. 1 ran against a small unelectable group. Bernie Sanders has been an admirable foe, but he just has certain voting blocks he can’t win (moderates and the black community), and therefore Hillary, in theory, ran unopposed.

Priebus should have started by making sure three Florida residents were reduced to one. Why wasn’t Marco Rubio pulled into a room and told he should be governor first? Now he’s political toxic waste. He lost to Trump in his home state. At 41 years old, he’s become the right’s John Edwards. The future of the party just became a blemish from the past.

Why wasn’t Ben Carson pulled into a room and told to run for a House of Representatives seat? He went from becoming the face of the black conservative movement to a national mockery. He wasn’t ready for prime time and now he’s backing Trump half-heartedly with such inspirational quotes as, “Even if Donald Trump turns out not to be such a great president, which I don’t think is the case, I think he’s going to surround himself with really good people; but even if he didn’t, we’re only looking at four years as opposed to multiple generations and perhaps the loss of the American dream forever.” The “It’s just four years, America” campaign begins. #Inspiring.

Jeb Bush shouldn’t have had to fight for elbow room at the table so quickly, and had it come down to him and John Kasich for the common-sense moderate Republican vote, he would have looked stronger. Chris Christie with fewer people could have gone after Trump earlier, and Lindsay Graham, Scott Walker and Rand Paul should have been told to focus on their own states. Trump won earlier because he got 30 percent-35 percent of the vote early on, and the rest split up the libertarian-conservative-moderate-warhawk vote. Had Priebus created a vision early on, Trump and Cruz would have looked silly instead of like these “outsiders” they claimed to be. But running against a large group made them look like the myths they created about themselves. Cruz isn’t an outsider, he’s just a jerk that no one in his party likes. And Trump isn’t an outsider. He was a billionaire funding the two establishments since the 1980s.

The Republican Party is over. After November, and Hillary wins, my prediction is that a third party is created. Just who’s left unscathed to lead it?