Alabama real estate mogul and millionaire Stan Pate has long made waves for his no-holds-barred approach to political speech, both in the state and outside of it.
Before this latest effort, his most famous antic was paying for a plane to fly a banner with the words “Impeach corrupt Alabama Governor Bob Riley” at the 2009 National Championship game in Pasadena, California, where the Alabama Crimson Tide took on the Texas Longhorns.
But Pate’s latest undertaking, in hopes of stymying the presidential aspirations of fellow real estate developer Donald Trump, goes beyond the borders of Alabama. Heck, it extends beyond the United States.
Last week a political action committee led by Pate ran full-page satirical ads in Korean and Mexican newspapers, attempting to drum up anti-Trump sentiment in some of the United States’ most frequent trading partners.
Pate said swaying American voters wasn’t the goal in his ads, which depicted invoices for a wall and nuclear bombs in Mexico and Korea, respectively. Instead, he hopes they’ll talk to their family and friends who have immigrated to the United States and “sound the alarm” about the possibility of a Trump presidency.
“Hopefully they begin to communicate and certainly begin a discussion about this wall,” Pate told NBC News.
Pate said his nontraditional tactics are what it’s going to take to get the attention on the nation, and the world.
“Getting the public’s attention is not easy,” explained Pate. “I want to make sure that I do everything that I can to bring the public’s attention that there are choices here.”
While Pate’s efforts may win points for creativity, there is evidence all the anti-Trump efforts may be for naught.
According to a recent report by The Associated Press, it now looks unlikely the #NeverTrump movement will succeed at the Republican National Convention later this month.
Numbers are stacked against the insurgents. Trump triumphed in the vast majority of this year’s primaries and caucuses, giving him 1,542 delegates, according to The Associated Press. That’s well above the 1,237 needed to clinch the nomination.
Now, it’s true those delegates can vote however they wish during convention battles to change the rules, so delegates pledged to a candidate could back anyone they want. And you can count on such defections, because some delegates representing Trump actually prefer his defeated rival, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, or others.
But Trump still has a big numerical advantage.
According to an informal count by one party insider, Trump can rely on a solid 900 delegates, compared to a combined 650 for Trump opponents plus delegates backing Cruz or other candidates.
That leaves over 900 remaining delegates. Trump would need only about a third of them to prevail. And don’t forget, many delegates are party regulars inclined to want a gathering that’s peaceful, not a GOP civil war on prime-time TV.
The anti-Trump forces have said they have more than 400 delegate supporters.
Whether the Dump Trump movement gains any traction in the few remaining weeks before the convention remains to be seen, but it can certainly be said that they’re pulling out all the stops to make it happen.