Republican officials are exploring how to handle a scenario that would be unthinkable in a normal election year: What would happen if the party’s presidential nominee dropped out?
ABC News has learned that senior party officials are so frustrated — and confused — by Donald Trump‘s erratic behavior that they are exploring how to replace him on the ballot if he drops out.
So how would it work?
First, Trump would have to voluntarily exit the race. Officials say there is no mechanism for forcing him to withdraw his nomination. (Trump has not given any indications that he no longer wants to be his party’s nominee.)
Then it would be up to the 168 members of the Republican National Committee to choose a successor, though the process is complicated.
One Republican legal expert has advised party officials that, for practical reasons, Trump would have to drop out by early September to give the party enough time to choose his replacement and get the next nominee’s name on the ballot in enough states to win.
Relax, GOPpers, it ain’t gonna happen. This race is the pinnacle of Donald Trump’s life; it’s what he’s been after since he stood up in his crib and traded his Zwieback for a gold-plated teething ring. (Actually doing the job of president? Well, he’ll staff that out.)
But unless he has an awakening on the scale of Saul on the road to Damascus or Senator Paine (Claude Rains) in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, he will stay in the race and drag the party, willingly or not, over the event horizon to oblivion.
So don’t get your hopes up. The only thing that will stop him is the Giant Meteor.