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Why Trump Is Losing His Grip on the GOP - POLITICO

U.S. Senate

Donald Trump
Mo Brooks
| Chip Somodevilla
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John F. Harris
John Harris
Mitch McConnell
Vladimir Putin’s
Tara Palmeri
Alex Isenstadt
Janice McGeachin
Brad Little
Ted Budd
Pat McCrory
Brian Kemp
David Perdue
Joseph McCarthy
George Wallace
Ross Perot
Ralph Waldo Emerson —


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the United States
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Positivity     37.56%   
   Negativity   62.44%
The New York Times
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Link CopiedAltitude is a column by POLITICO founding editor John Harris, offering weekly perspective on politics in a moment of radical disruption.It strains memory now to recall that when Donald Trump first shoved his way into presidential politics seven years ago this spring, and soon after humiliated a long parade of establishment Republicans, his appeal to voters had a coherent dimension.That is, it was based on a sustained argument that many Americans regarded as credible. Brooks’ problem was that he said something that was most likely 100 percent sincere: He believes it is time for Republicans to “put that behind you” and move on from questioning the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election.Trump, already dismayed by Brooks’ weak standing in polls, denounced him for the decision to go “woke” and not join Trump in insisting that the 2020 election was stolen.The move put an especially bright light on a trend years in the making: Trump has moved from being the beneficiary of America’s instinctual suspicion that most politicians are phonies who don’t really believe a thing they say, to being the enforcer against politicians who are insufficiently phony in professing blind devotion to him.Brooks was certainly being less phony in his words about the 2020 election than he was a few days ago when braying about Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell being “a weak-kneed, debt junkie, open-border RINO Republican.” That was a transparent effort to get back in Trump’s favor — and it’s impossible to believe Brooks wouldn’t be fervently pro-McConnell if he perceived that would help him. It’s just words — he likely doesn’t give a damn.One suspects that Trump himself does not realize how far he has drifted from the original source of his appeal as someone who is not connected to a reigning power structure and may lie and even cheat but does not traffic in the usual political B.S. Now Trump is trying to create his own power structure.

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