Politics

Trump holds the Republicans in a stranglehold

Noise in the party. Ex-US President goes on the offensive after the impeachment has ended. Opponents and critics are overrun

The tone of voice is well known, but the brutality with which Donald Trump verbally executed his once loyal servant is still shocking. Mitch McConnell is nothing but a “grumpy, humorless, political henchman” who “never understands what to do and what is right for our country”.

Rudeness that the Republican faction leader in the US Senate has never had to put up with. Especially not by an ex-US president, whom he stood by for four years and often against all political decency.

Closing ranks

McConnell severely criticized Trump after storming the Capitol. Seven US Republican Senators went even further. In the impeachment process that was concluded a few days ago, you voted for Trump’s impeachment. A risk that brings them not only the unadorned anger of the ex-president, but also the open rejection by their own party. Because they are just gathering again behind Trump, who – barely survived the impeachment – speaks openly about a comeback.

Opponents publicly condemned

A US senator from Louisiana had to find out recently how painful it is to feel this rejection from one’s own party. Bill Cassidy had also voted for impeachment. Criticism from party friends from the deep south came promptly, albeit not, as usual, discreetly behind the scenes, but in the form of a public execution via Twitter. “We condemn Senator Cassidy’s decision in the strictest possible terms … luckily, less foggy heads prevailed.”

Ridicule from the party headquarters

So the new way of dealing with Trump opponents among the Republicans. Cassidy is not an isolated incident, and Senators from North Carolina and Pennsylvania have had a similar experience. The senator was not sent to Washington to “follow his conscience”, the party headquarters there sounded almost scornfully, “but to represent us”.

Presidential candidate

The fact that Trump has united the party behind him is not only noticeable among the top representatives, but also among the grassroots. According to recent polls, 75 percent of Republicans are in favor of him continuing to play an “important role in the party”. More than half want him as a candidate for the next presidential election.

Family clan in position

All of this gives Trump an outstanding position of power in the party – and he seems determined to use it. “The journey has only just begun,” he said after the impeachment process ended, saying that he will be heard a lot more over the next few months.

Not only Trump himself, but also members of the family clan are already being traded as candidates for political office – and no longer just behind the scenes. Daughter-in-law Lara Trump, for example, is publicly named by Republican grandees such as Senator Lindsey as the next female senator for the state of North Carolina. No coincidence, since the incumbent is one of those unpleasant rebels who opposed Trump in impeachment.

No opposition

There is currently no noticeable resistance to Trump in the party. Some representatives from the George Bush era are therefore already considering turning their backs on the Republicans. The US media had recently speculated about a “civil war” in the party – Trump fans against opponents. The New York Times says soberly: “There is no significant opposition to Trump.”

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