Tags: Trump Administration | Donald Trump | GOP2016 | Tom Cole | Late | Third-Party | Candidate

Rep. Tom Cole: 'Awful Late' for Third-Party Candidate

(MSNBC/"Morning Joe")

By    |   Wednesday, 11 May 2016 11:06 AM

It's "awful late" to bring in a third-party candidate for the presidential race, and doing so would just resulted in wasted votes, Rep. Tom Cole said Wednesday.

"I think you've got three choices," the Oklahoma Republican told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program. "You can vote for Hillary Clinton and elect her and lose the presidency, the Supreme Court, maybe the Senate, maybe the House.

"Or you can vote for Donald Trump. We have a much better chance of being successful in the Senate and House. Or you can vote for a third-party and that's almost always a wasted vote and I think it would be this time."

Cole said he has promised to support the eventual GOP nominee, and assumes that will Donald Trump, as it would "take an act of God" for that not to happen.

But he thinks a third-party candidate would just push the election to either Clinton or Trump in November.

"If it is a third-party from the right, you're going to elect Hillary Clinton," said Cole. "A third-party from the left, you're going to elect Donald Trump. So at the end of the day, that will actually push at least the traditional Republican and Democratic leaders toward their nominee."

Cole said he will meet along with House Speaker Paul Ryan and other Republican leaders on Thursday with Trump. While Trump and Ryan don't see eye-to-eye on several issues, including on Muslims and on Trump's tone, Cole said there is a "lot of common ground" as well, including on tax reform and foreign policy.

"At the end of the day they are both going to have to sing from the same sheet of music," said Cole. "They don't have to agree with one another on everything but they have to find common ground of I think this discussion will lead them in that direction."

He also thinks Ryan will eventually support Trump, despite his initial misgivings.

"We're not going to have a situation, in my view, where we have a Republican speaker that presides over a convention and doesn't support the nominee," said Cole. "Nor can we afford in the fall campaign with so much at stake to have our nominee and our speaker on having a major rift."

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It's "awful late" to bring in a third-party candidate for the presidential race, and doing so would just resulted in wasted votes, Rep. Tom Cole said Tuesday.
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2016-06-11
Wednesday, 11 May 2016 11:06 AM
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