Like no other part of the Republican establishment, the party’s foreign policy luminaries joined in opposition to the idea of a Donald J. Trump presidency.
Loyal Republicans who served in the two Bush administrations, they appeared on television and wrote op-eds blasting him. They aligned under a “Never Trump” banner and signed a letter saying they were “convinced that he would be a dangerous president and would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being.”
For his part, President-elect Trump has maligned them as bumbling and myopic, architects of “a long history of failed policies and continued losses at war.”
The coming weeks will determine whether both sides decide they need each other.
On the establishment side, the opposition is now softening for some — driven either by a stated sense of patriotic duty to advise a new president with no foreign policy expertise, or a somewhat less noble motive to avoid years of being excluded from Washington power circles.
“Never Trump” has become “Maybe Trump.” But whether he would have them is another matter.
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