COMMENTARY: Trump’s endorsement can hurt Republicans

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By Michael Reagan Cagle Cartoons Newspaper Syndicate

August 2, 2021 - 9:01 pm

Will Donald Trump’s endorsements successful the 2022 Republican primaries beryllium a double-edged sword for the party? Based connected the astonishing results of past week’s peculiar House runoff predetermination successful Texas, they could be.

The Republican-only predetermination successful a legislature territory adjacent Fort Worth was a runoff betwixt Susan Wright, who was endorsed by Trump, and a freshman authorities typical named Jake Ellzey. According to each the experts, Wright should person won reasonably easily. She was the widow of Rep. Don Wright, whose COVID-19 related decease successful February triggered the election.

She was a coagulated blimpish successful a blimpish district. And she had the backing of Donald Trump.

Trump did not look successful idiosyncratic for her, and section pols accidental his enactment was “half-hearted,” but the ex-president appeared successful TV spots for her, and his governmental enactment committee gave her wealth and bought ads attacking Ellzey.

When the votes were counted, however, Ellzey bushed Wright with comparative ease, 53 to 47 percent.

Ellzey is simply a erstwhile Navy combat aviator and a blimpish who out-hustled Wright and was endorsed by erstwhile Texas Gov. Rick Perry and chap combat seasoned Rep. Dan Crenshaw. After helium won, Ellzey said his triumph proved that the radical of his territory wanted a affirmative “Reagan Republican outlook for the aboriginal of our country.”

Evoking my father’s sanction ever makes maine smile.

But Ellzey’s triumph — oregon Wright’s nonaccomplishment — makes maine wonderment astir however overmuch Trump volition assistance oregon wounded Republicans adjacent autumn erstwhile they anticipation to regain the House and Senate.

When Trump enthusiastically endorses 1 Republican campaigner successful a superior and gets his followers to travel to the polls to decision the others, helium runs the information of hurting the party’s chances successful the wide election. To triumph successful the fall, Republicans person to bash much than conscionable get retired their base. They besides person to seizure the votes of independents and mean Democrats.

When I look astatine the 2022 midterms, I think, “Yeah, arsenic a campaigner you mightiness privation Donald Trump’s unconditional and avid enactment successful the Republican primary. But however are you going to triumph implicit those independents and mean Democrats successful the fall?” Those important voters whitethorn extremity up hating you — due to the fact that of their hatred of Trump — much than they hatred the mode the Pelosi-Biden Democrats are wrecking the economy, blowing up the Southern borderline and mishandling the warfare against COVID.

And truthful Donald Trump becomes a double-edged sword — you privation his endorsement for the Republican primary, but due to the fact that of him successful the wide predetermination you’re liable to suffer independents, suburban women and mean Democrats.

And to triumph you are going to request those voters — conscionable arsenic my begetter did successful 1980.

He won not due to the fact that Republicans voted for him, but due to the fact that millions of independents and mean Democrats did. He needed them. The Republican Party ever needs them due to the fact that nationally, and successful astir plaything states, it’s severely outnumbered.

It was a peculiar election, truthful turnout was low, and it whitethorn person been a one-off predetermination that means thing for adjacent fall. Or it could beryllium a wake-up telephone for the GOP’s leaders — a informing that Trump’s powerfulness wrong the Republican Party could wounded their large plans for adjacent fall.

Wright’s astonishment nonaccomplishment besides should unit the party’s expansive poohbahs to inquire themselves: What was it that Dan Crenshaw knew that they should besides know?

Michael Reagan, the lad of President Ronald Reagan, is an author, talker and president of the Reagan Legacy Foundation. Contact astatine reagan@caglecartoons.com.

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