As I sensed at the time, we were watching a major historical event unfold on Saturday when 1/3 of the #NeverTrump Senate repudiated Trump:
“But after the Access Hollywood video surfaced, that flow became a torrent. On Saturday alone, more Republican leaders had renounced their party’s nominee than in any 24-hour period since the day in June 1912 when Theodore Roosevelt’s supporters bolted from the GOP convention after the re-nomination of President William Howard Taft. By Saturday’s end, nearly one-third of Republican senators and almost one-third of Republican governors had declared they would not vote for Trump. So did former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. House Speaker Paul Ryan only made the rubble bounce on Monday when he announced he would no longer defend or campaign for the nominee.
By comparison, only a handful of GOP senators rejected Barry Goldwater in 1964; former President Dwight Eisenhower, despite private doubts, publicly campaigned for him. Even in 1912, when Roosevelt launched an independent candidacy, the Republican leadership remained more unified behind Taft than their modern-day counterparts are behind Trump. University of Southern California communications professor Geoffrey Cowan, author of a rollicking recent book on the 1912 race, Let the People Rule, says only about a half-dozen GOP senators backed Roosevelt, and less than 15 percent of the convention delegates bolted with him. While some Progressive Party leaders joined Roosevelt’s insurgency, “the Progressives who controlled the Republican Party in their home states generally did not want to abandon the party,” Cowan says.
To my knowledge, something of this scale has never happened before in American history. The #NeverTrump stab in the back was bigger than the TR’s revolt that led to the Bull Moose Party in 1912.