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Watch out for 2022 -- Trump isn't finished just yet

POLITICAL NEWS

Donald Trump

Watch out for 2022 -- Trump isn't finished just yet


Story by Michael D'Antonio - Opinion

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Published on January 2, 2022 4:30 AM
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Mitch McConnell blamed Trump for the attack on the US Capitol in February and said, "There's no question, none, that President Trump is practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day. The facts are clear, and there is no doubt Biden won the 2020 election and no evidence of widespread voter fraud.
 
(CNN) Ever devoted to seeking power and attention, former President Donald Trump has announced he'll hold a rally January 15 in Arizona, a key state where his allies used lies about widespread voter fraud to contest the 2020 election results. And on the anniversary of the US capitol attack on January 6, he'll dishonor the memory of those who died by holding a press conference pushing the lie that the violent insurrection was an "unarmed protest." At a moment when the nation needs healing more than anything else, he seems determined to tear it apart.

As a president who survived two impeachment trials, Trump is following his uniquely disruptive and chaotic term in office with a determined effort to tighten his grip on the GOP and keep his supporters riled up. With the planned rally in Arizona, it appears Trump is testing whether he can spin his failed presidency in a way that will turn defeat into triumph, with what looks like an eye on the White House in 2024.

Trump lost the 2020 election by a resounding margin of 7 million votes. But unlike defeated presidents before him, who graciously accepted the will of the American people and ensured a smooth and peaceful transition of power, he created and continues to feed a movement devoted to himself by eroding public trust in our democracy. Along the way, he is trying to coerce the Republican Party to support his cause.

Trump's effort has two key elements. The first is his scheme to consolidate his grip on the party by backing 2022 candidates who believe -- or at least say they believe -- his destructive fantasies. In Georgia, for example, he is retaliating against incumbent (Republican) governor Brian Kemp and secretary of state Brad Raffensperger for acknowledging President Joe Biden's victory in the Peach State by endorsing Republican challengers against Kemp and Raffensperger in 2022. In Alaska, Trump is trying to unseat Sen. Lisa Murkowski, who was one of seven Republicans in the upper chamber who voted to impeach him for inciting an insurrection after January 6. He's also going after other Republicans and issuing endorsements earlier in the election cycle than he did as president, signaling an eagerness to continue reshaping the GOP in his own image....