In a speech before the House of Representatives, GOP Representative David Jolly (R-FL) called on Donald Trump to drop out of the presidential race over his comments urging a ban on Muslims entering the United States. It won't happen of course -- a recent national poll has Trump taking a stunning 41% of GOP primary voters -- but it's a noble sentiment. And, it must be said, a bold one: Jolly is no deeply entrenched incumbent; he's running in the GOP primary right now to replace Marco Rubio in the Senate (nor can he simply return to his home district, which got a lot bluer in redistricting).
The interesting thing, of course, will be what happens if the impossible becomes reality and Trump wins the nomination. Will folks like Jolly recant their condemnations? Or will we see a genuine crackup within the elite Republican class -- many of whom (make no mistake) revile Trump?
What makes Trump such a threat to the Republican mainstream is that not only is he willing to say the quiet parts out loud, but because of his vast personal wealth (and lack of political ambitions other than the presidency) he's relatively insulated from normal pressure by party elites. So he can appeal entirely to the raw, angry id of a base that is sick of having to keep the quiet parts quiet.
Those Republicans who had previously shrugged off dog whistles in that direction as simple expedient political misdirection now may face a very stark moral choice. Jolly's speech is a bold one even now, given his current political position. But it will take courage of another magnitude to continue to forthrightly condemn Trump's bigotry if he actually wins the nomination.