While Snopes has debunked rumors that Bill Weld is dropping out to support Hillary Clinton – the shift to focusing exclusively on defeating Trump is true.
Libertarian VP candidate Bill Weld knows that his ticket will not win the Presidency. But he also knows that a President Donald Trump would be the absolute worst thing for this country. And after realizing that he and his running mate Gary Johnson might actually be responsible if that nightmare ever came to fruition, Weld decided to change his focus from his own ticket to instead focus solely on defeating Trump.
On Tuesday Weld told the Boston Globe that from now until the election on November 8 his sole focus will be on making sure Donald Trump doesn’t win. He knows that he and Gary Johnson will not win. And he believes his time would be much better spent on attacking Trump, rather than continuing his own campaigning.
Weld is also hoping that after Trump loses, he will be a key player in saving and rebuilding the Republican Party.
“Maybe somebody is going to come up with a new playbook, and I don’t know who it’s going to be, but it would be fun to participate.”
In May at the Libertarian Convention, Weld said that he would do everything he possibly could to get Gary Johnson elected. He also said that he would remain a Libertarian for the rest of his life. But, in his interview with the Globe, it was clear that those things might have changed.
It seems that Gary Johnson’s recent gaffes and clear ineptitude on foreign policy have really embarrassed Weld. And that has caused tension between him and his running mate.
Bob Durand, a Weld ally and former Democratic state senator who has contributed to the Libertarian ticket said, “Unfortunately, if the ticket was flipped, they might have more success.” But when the suggestion was brought to Johnson he flatly rejected the idea.
Weld said that he disagrees with Hillary Clinton on military and fiscal issues. But he feels that Trump’s agenda is so offensive that it’s “in a class by itself.”
He told the Globe,
“I think Mr. Trump’s proposals in the foreign policy area, including nuclear proliferation, tariffs, and free trade, would be so hurtful, domestically and in the world, that he has my full attention.”
While Weld is not a Hillary-lover, he has said much kinder things about Clinton than Trump. Just last week he said on MSNBC that he’s “not sure anybody is more qualified than Hillary Clinton to be president of the United States.” In contrast he has called Trump a “huckster” with a “screw loose.”
Weld claims that he and Johnson are still “happy warriors.” And he says that Johnson is fully supportive of his new focus to take down Trump. He also insists he’s not abandoning Johnson.
The good news is that Johnson and Weld are currently taking more votes away from Hillary than they are the Republican nominee. So this shift really should benefit Hillary and hopefully cause a positive shift in the polls.
Following the interview that Weld gave to the Globe, on Wednesday Weld tried to walk back his comments and insisted the media took the interview wrong. He told Reason,
“I said to the reporter that I plan to focus on Donald Trump, because I think his international proposals represent a grave threat,” Weld told me, “but in the same breath I said that I’m not going to omit to make the points that Mrs. Clinton, if she were elected, runs the risk of spending and borrowing us into the poorhouse, and that I think her fiscal policies and her military policies are not at all in line with the approach that Gary Johnson and I will take if elected. So nothing is to the exclusion of anything else. I did convey to the Globe the idea that I would be emphasizing the respects in which I think Mr. Trump’s international proposals are wrong-headed, but that’s nothing new—I’ve been saying that since Day One.”
Additionally, he posted a clarification on his Facebook page:
Featured image via thepulse2016.com