This week the conservative #NeverTrump movement got a glimmer of hope when Weekly Standard founder and editor Bill Kristol announced on Twitter that a mysterious third party candidate could soon enter the race and take up the mantle of true conservatism. Unfortunately their hopes were dashed when it was revealed later that day that Kristol's white knight was an obscure Republican lawyer and commentator named David French. Twitter was its typical cruel self.
Still, some on the right still seemed genuinely enthused about the #FrenchRevolution and the possibility of offering voters a conservative alternative to the demagogue Donald Trump. Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney even jumped in to offer French some praise.
There's just one problem. David French's career is full of hot takes like this:
Let’s be honest: When someone advocates for large-scale Muslim immigration from the world’s worst conflict zones, they are arguing that the West should open its borders to people who are overwhelmingly anti-Semitic, disproportionately religiously intolerant, and harboring disturbing numbers of men who have no moral reservations about sexual assault.
That was from a National Review article posted in January of this year, in which French repeatedly warns about the "miserable cultures" of North Africa and the Middle East and cautions readers about the increased potential for rape and sexual assault if people from those regions are allowed into this country. He left out the part that goes "some I assume are good people."
In other words, the conservative movement's alternative to the immigrant-bashing Islamophobic demagogue at the top of the Republican ticket, is another immigrant-bashing Islamophobic demagogue—just one with less name recognition.
And it's not just xenophobia that unites French and Trump. They also have similar views when it comes to respecting women's autonomy. Take, for instance this summary from the National Review of a chapter in French's 2011 book Home and Away, which he co-authored with his wife.
Before David left for Iraq, he and Nancy put together rules, in a painfully honest conversation about human frailty. There would be no drinking during the year of separation. Nancy would not “have phone conversations with men, or meaningful e-mail exchanges about politics or any other subject.” Nor would she be on Facebook, where “the ghosts of boyfriends past” could contact her. When Nancy innocently started e-mailing about faith with a man associated with a radio show she was on, she told David about it, and he asked her to end the relationship. David knew, with his “stomach clenching,” that “the most intimate conversations a person has are about life and faith” — and that “spiritual and emotional intimacy frequently leads to physical intimacy.”
(h/t: Kevin Robillard)