After scoring an endorsement earlier this week from the former president, a text message has surfaced showing Ohio Senate candidate JD Vance worrying in 2016 that Trump was either “a cynical asshole” or “America’s Hitler.”
The news demonstrates just how important it is to vet people for their endorsement and how Donald Trump seemingly hasn’t learned that lesson.
“In the Great State of Ohio, the candidate most qualified and ready to win in November is J.D. Vance,” Trump said in a statement released Friday. “We cannot play games. It is all about winning!”
He also acknowledges that Vance has made some disparaging comments about him in the past.
“Like some others, J.D. Vance may have said some not-so-great things about me in the past, but he gets it now, and I have seen that in spades,” Trump beamed.
Trump: ‘J.D. Vance may have said some not so great things about me in the past, but he gets it now, and I have seen that in spades.’ Endorses Vance in Ohio Senate race. pic.twitter.com/yo3QFYtETz
— Byron York (@ByronYork) April 15, 2022
J.D. Vance Worried Trump Was ‘America’s Hitler’
We’re all for people finally seeing the light on President Trump’s potential and desire to make America great again, but certain comments seem a bit too far gone.
GOP officials in Ohio urged Trump not to back Vance or any candidate in the Senate race.
“We know there are many qualified candidates in this race who have stood up for the ‘America First’ agenda over the years and have carried the Trump mantle over the years, again with the notable exception of JD Vance,” party leaders said in a letter to Trump.
Vance, a current populist firebrand and author of the memoir “Hillbilly Elegy,” threatened to back Hillary Clinton in 2016 and called Trump “another opioid.”
“Like a lot of people, I criticized Trump back in 2016,” Vance he told Fox News last year. “And I ask folks not to judge me based on what I said in 2016, because I’ve been very open that I did say those critical things and I regret them, and I regret being wrong about the guy.”
JD Vance deleted his tweet about voting for Evan McMullin.
It was here: https://t.co/4k1Xk8AMgv
— andrew kaczynski (@KFILE) July 1, 2021
Trump’s Endorsements Gone Wrong
How wrong was Vance ‘about the guy’? Try, unhinged liberal lunatic-level wrong.
Georgia Representative Josh McLaurin, a Democrat who claims to have been Vance’s roommate at Yale University, shared a 2016 text message contending to be from the Ohio Senate candidate.
In the message, Vance laments the fact that Trump had become the face of the Republican party.
“We are, whether we like it or not, the party of lower-income, lower-education white people, and I have been saying for a long time that we need to offer those people SOMETHING (and hell, maybe even expand our appeal to working-class black people in the process) or a demagogue would,” he allegedly wrote. “We are now at the point.”
The message continued: “I go back and forth between thinking Trump is a cynical a****** like Nixon who wouldn’t be that bad (and might even prove useful) or that he’s America’s Hitler. How’s that for discouraging?”
The screenshot below is @JDVance1’s unfiltered explanation from 2016 of the breakdown in Republican politics that he now personally is trying to exploit.
The “America’s Hitler” bit is at the end.
The public deserves to know the magnitude of this guy’s bad faith. pic.twitter.com/79Z0qSWFWF
— Josh McLaurin (@JoshforGeorgia) April 18, 2022
Vance’s campaign didn’t deny the message came from him.
“It’s laughable that the media treats JD not liking Trump 6 years ago as some sort of breaking news, when they’ve already covered it to death since this race began,” his campaign manager told Newsweek.
Vance’s campaign manager added that Trump obviously views him as “a genuine convert.”
Last week, The Political Insider reported that Trump had endorsed Mehmet Oz – better known as Dr. Oz – in the Pennsylvania GOP primary for the U.S. Senate.
This, despite a history of decidedly non-conservative viewpoints on abortion, fracking, and gun control.
NEW PROOF RINO Mehmet Oz is pro-abortion.
“I’m not socially conservative,” Oz said. “We should not be creating obstacles during the difficult time that women have when trying to terminate a pregnancy.”
Abortion to birth. That’s the Hollywood/Oz position https://t.co/AU4ov4lcAr
— Matt Wolking (@MattWolking) March 31, 2022
Trump Supports Hageman
Trump has also thrown his support in Wyoming to Harriet Hageman, the attorney running against Liz Cheney in an upcoming primary.
Hageman vociferously supported Cheney during her 2016 congressional campaign, and strongly opposed President Trump at the time.
In fact, she tried to stop Trump from getting the Republican nomination in 2016, and called him “racist and xenophobic.”
Turns out the Republican handpicked by Trump to take down Liz Cheney was a vocal opponent of Trump in 2016.
Harriet Hageman was involved in trying to prevent Trump from becoming the nominee at the convention and decried him as “racist and xenophobic.” https://t.co/SCZqXmFfXD
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) September 28, 2021
Each time he makes one of these questionable endorsements, Trump indicates it’s all about backing a winner.
“This is all about winning elections in order to stop the Radical Left maniacs from destroying our country,” Trump said in his endorsement of Oz.
We’re skeptical he wouldn’t start looking for someone better if somebody like Mitt Romney was the best chance of stopping a Democrat in his Senate race.
Maybe we’re wrong. He did, after all, endorse Romney in 2018. Romney has done nothing but stab him in the back since, voting to convict Trump in his impeachment trial over the former President’s alleged role in the Capitol riot.
Will these other candidates do the same – bend the knee for an endorsement only to drive a knife in the back of conservatives when the fate of the country is on the line?
Donald Trump will reportedly deliver a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Florida this weekend in which he will claim the mantle of power in the GOP by saying he is “still in charge.”
A longtime adviser to the former President tells Axios that the speech will be a “show of force” in which he will announce, “I may not have Twitter or the Oval Office, but I’m still in charge.”
Going a step further, Trump is expected to argue that he is still the man to drain the Washington swamp as the Republican “presumptive 2024 nominee.”
Trump will be making his speech on Sunday, the final day of the conference.
During the week, Axios adds, “advisers will meet with him at Mar-a-Lago” where they will “plan his next political moves” and “set up the machinery for kingmaking in the 2022 midterms.”
Scoop: Trump to claim total control of GOP / plans years-long payback campaign…https://t.co/eh7rO1h3OF
— Jim VandeHei (@JimVandeHei) February 22, 2021
Is Trump In Charge of the Republican Party?
Donald Trump certainly seems to have the numbers to back up his claims of being in charge of the Republican party.
A poll released this past weekend indicates nearly 50 percent of Trump voters would follow the former President to a new party and abandon the GOP altogether.
A vast majority of GOP voters want to see him play a big role in the future of the party, including running again in 2024.
Trump is strategically leaving that option open to give him leverage within the party and with voters.
PARTY OF TRUMP
– Trump’s looking to assert himself as top 2024 contender via CPAC speech, sources tell @mikeallen
– His leadership PAC has $75 million on hand & database of tens of millions of names
– Even if he doesn’t run, these stunts give him powerhttps://t.co/HcnsTXEYBj
— Sara Fischer (@sarafischer) February 22, 2021
“Trump effectively is the Republican Party,” Trump senior adviser Jason Miller told Axios. “The only chasm is between Beltway insiders and grassroots Republicans around the country.”
He added, “When you attack President Trump, you’re attacking the Republican grassroots.”
A longtime adviser called Trump’s speech a “show of force,” and said the message will be: “I may not have Twitter or the Oval Office, but I’m still in charge.” Payback is his chief obsession. https://t.co/ohQpzSBabd
— Axios (@axios) February 22, 2021
Who Is In Charge of the GOP?
Miller’s point is one of the more important ones that establishment Republicans don’t seem to understand.
When they attack Trump, they don’t just do so as a matter of principle. They do so with disdain and a personal vendetta which reflects poorly to and upon his supporters.
As an example, a group led by former independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin announced recently that they are considering forming their own political party.
In his statement regarding the anti-Trump party, McMullin portrayed supporters of the former President as extremists who are a threat to the country.
“Large portions of the Republican Party are radicalizing and threatening American democracy,” McMullin told Reuters. “The party needs to recommit to truth, reason and founding ideals or there clearly needs to be something new.”
The biggest threat to American democracy has been, and always will be, the Democrat party – McMullin and the anti-Trumpers good friends.
The Zoom was co-hosted by @EvanMcMullin, who ran as an independent in the 2016 presidential election. Participants included Trump Homeland Security officials @JohnMitnick and @NeuSummits, and former congressman @RepCharlieDent https://t.co/8pQBUlXMBw 3/6 pic.twitter.com/geSHnkKHMO
— Reuters (@Reuters) February 11, 2021
Axios notes that Trump stands ready to support candidates who share his vision for America in the 2022 midterms and has the backing of state-level officials, many of whom censured Republicans who voted in lockstep with Democrats on impeachment.
The former president’s speech will claim “many of his predictions about President Biden have already come true” and that “much like 2016, we’re taking on Washington again.”
That includes everybody in Washington on both sides of the political aisle.
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