The increase in Representative Mike Johnson in the House, coupled with the fall of former Vice President Mike Pence and the domination of former president Donald Trumpshows that denial of the 2020 elections is a prerequisite for winning Republican power.
Johnson, who played a leading role with the aim of blocking the certification of That of President Joe Biden His victory in the 2020 election benefited, in his ascension to the presidency last week, from the endorsement of pro-Trump lawmakers.
Pence suspended his White House bid over the weekend after months stuck in single-digit polls. His tortured explanations of his constitutionally correct ruling — that he had no authority to overturn Biden’s 2020 congressional election victory — failed to convince rank-and-file Republicans to adhere to the false claims by the ex-president that he had won the election. Pence now joins the growing ranks of Republicans, from former Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney to outgoing Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, whose careers were eviscerated by contradicting Trump’s lies.
These lies – that he was unfairly and illegally kicked out of the White House – now form the basis of Trump’s 2024 campaign to win it back. And after discrediting the electoral system in the eyes of millions of his supporters, Trump is now working to tarnish another pillar of American democratic institutions: the courts. Over the weekend, the former president intensified his social media rants against the judge presiding over a New York fraud trial targeting him, his adult sons and his business, after being sentenced a second time to fined last week for violating a silence order. by apparently attacking court staff on social media.
The trial — and Trump’s attempt to fight the case in the court of public opinion with inflammatory comments — is a prelude to an unprecedented election year, with the fugitive Republican Party front-runner facing four criminal trials and the possibility that he is a convicted felon by Election Day in November 2024. In one of those criminal cases – the federal election subversion case – the judge on Sunday reinstated the silence order to against him, rejecting his request for a stay while his appeal was pending.
02:17 – Source: CNN
Cohen predicts outcome of Trump case after testimony
Trump’s mood is unlikely to improve in the coming week, with his adult children expected to be called to testify in the civil case in New York. Given that the judge has already ruled that the Trump Organization committed fraud, the ex-president presents the civil lawsuits as an attempt to derail his 2024 aspirations. For example, he warned in a fundraising email to earlier this month that the trial in New York was “a way to keep him away from the electoral campaign and to threaten him with the “corporate death penalty” if he chose to continue his presidential campaign. .” This claim was false, but it will likely be accepted by Trump’s most committed supporters.
The failure of Pence’s campaign says as much about a type of Republicanism that could disappear forever as it does about his own political skills.
The former vice president’s campaign aimed to return the Republican Party to its pre-Trump era. He proposed social conservatism, traditional tough fiscal policies and internationalism through a strong foreign policy that contrasted with his former boss’s complacency toward autocrats like Russian President Vladimir Putin.
But his failure to reach the Iowa caucuses — the first race for the GOP nomination in January — shows that a party still in Trump’s grip is unwilling to hear the truth about the 2020 election and may have turned against Ronald Reagan-style Republicanism for good. As he unsuccessfully toured early voting states, faced with false perceptions about his power to block the outcome of the 2020 election, Pence appeared to be trying to win over a party that no longer existed. He told CNN in August, for example, that he had no right to reject or return electoral vote lists to states and that “by the grace of God, I have done my duty under the Constitution of the United States.”
But the former vice president, who has tried to take credit for popular aspects of Trump’s presidency while escaping fury over his role in certifying the congressional election, has discovered that Trump is more popular than the truth in the modern Republican Party. What’s surprising is that it took him so long to conclude that his campaign was hopeless. Adding to Pence’s humiliation, Trump said his former number two should approve it — even though he ran a campaign that rejected the ex-president’s populism.
Despite his low standing in the polls, Pence is so far the highest-profile Republican candidate to drop out of the 2024 presidential campaign. His departure could slightly boost the hopes of other contenders vying to become the alternative to Trump before voting opens in January.
02:15 – Source: CNN
Chris Christie shares what Trump said after naming Meadows chief of staff
“It just means this race is narrowing, which is what everyone had been saying,” former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie told CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” on Sunday. “It never goes as fast as some would like, but it’s shrinking.” The 2024 hopeful added, “I’ll be ready to take on Donald Trump when people actually start voting in New Hampshire in particular.” »
However, given Trump’s dominance, there is no guarantee that narrowing the scope will threaten the former president’s lead on such short notice. Another lesson the ex-president’s rivals could learn is that forceful condemnations of Trump’s denialism in the 2020 election will likely be fatal to their campaigns. Indeed, candidates like Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley have generally only dared to criticize Trump indirectly for his constitutional vandalism and criminal exposure — including two indictments linked to his attempts to overturn the 2020 elections. They said it was time to move on from the dramas of the past and avoided going into details of the ex-president’s attacks on democracy.
Johnson represents the mainstream of his party that doubts Biden’s electoral victory
Johnson has yet to publicly address his leading role in attempts to discredit Biden’s victory in the 2020 election, having taken part in only a few friendly interviews on Fox News since becoming the Republican elected the most powerful last week after weeks of chaos caused by the ouster of the former president. Kevin McCarthy. When a reporter asked her about the issue at a news conference on Capitol Hill, she was booed by Republican lawmakers, one of whom told her to shut up.
Johnson has not been as vocal as Trump in claiming that the 2020 election was tainted by outright fraud or that it was a plot by Democrats to deprive the ex-president of a second term. But the Louisiana Republican has orchestrated a number of legal and quasi-constitutional efforts to cast doubt on Biden’s victory. For example, he organized support from Republican lawmakers for a legal brief that joined Texas and other red states that questioned results in swing states won by Biden. And on January 6, 2021, he signed a statement explaining that he and 36 other House Republicans would vote to support the objections of electors in key states won by Biden because they believed the votes were unconstitutional due to accommodations made by officials to voters during the pandemic. And even after the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol that day, Johnson joined the majority of House Republicans in voting to reject the Electoral College votes.
Although his actions subsequently threatened the democratic fabric of the nation, they appear to have furthered his political career.
There was evidence last week that Johnson’s maneuvering after the 2020 election helped secure his rise to the presidency. The little-known lawmaker emerged as a compromise candidate amid deep fatigue and frustration at the GOP conference, as yawning divisions within the party made the search for a new speaker impossible. But the previous presidential candidate, Rep. Tom Emmer of Minnesota, was distrusted by many Trump supporters because he did not vote to block certification of Biden’s victory. Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, for example, said Emmer’s vote to certify the 2020 election “played a big role” in her vote against him. “I couldn’t support a House speaker who didn’t oppose it,” Greene said. “The speaker of the House must reflect the views and will of Republican voters,” Greene said, reflecting the imperative for party leaders to defer to the beliefs of base voters, even if they are not true and even if they arrive at some point. cost to the general electorate.
Democrats are already trying to make Johnson’s electoral credibility a liability as the 2024 campaign heats up as Republicans seek to cling to their House majority.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, for example, sent a fundraising email to supporters on Sunday, claiming that House Republicans “made the architect of their undemocratic plans” the Speaker of the House . “We must defeat their MAGA majority and win back the House in 2024,” the email said.