Bill Kristol loses it over Donald Trump: Vows he'd support third-party candidate -- and hopes it's Dick Cheney

The neocon prince would bolt the GOP if Trump won the nod

By Sophia Tesfaye

Senior Politics Editor

Published September 15, 2015 3:28PM (EDT)

Bill Kristol                       (AP/Janet Van Ham)
Bill Kristol (AP/Janet Van Ham)

The thought of voting for Donald Trump for president is so unbearable to Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol that the infamous neocon has promised to leave the Republican Party in support of a third party bid if Trump becomes the Republican presidential nominee.

"I doubt I'd support Donald. I doubt I'd support the Democrat," Kristol told CNN. "I think I'd support getting someone good on the ballot as a third party candidate."

Kristol's idea of a "third party," however, failed to veer off the Republican ranch and instead remained firmly entrenched in the realm of the war hawks. Go figure. Kristol singled out two of the most vocal critics of the international Iranian nuclear deal as his dream ticket. Former Vice President Dick Cheney and Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, "would be an excellent independent ticket!" Kristol told CNN in an email.

And in a tweet this morning, Kristol suggested that retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, who comes second to Trump in both national and early state polls should actually be considered the frontrunner, not Trump:

Despite his obvious displeasure with Trump's dominance, Kristol appears to have resigned himself to the likelihood that Trump has a real appeal among Republican voters.

"I've wondered if I've had it backwards," Kristol revealed during a recent discussion with failed Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, begrudgingly admitting that Trump was the leading candidate in a straw poll of Weekly Standard readers. "Maybe I'm wrong ... I kept saying 'it's not going to happen, it would be so unusual,' but I don't know."

(h/t TPM)

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By Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's senior editor for news and politics, and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

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2016 Elections 2016 Republican Primary Aol_on Bill Kristol Dick Cheney Donald Trump Gop Civil War