Longtime Democratic strategist and New York magazine analyst Ed Kilgore on Saturday explained why he thought Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp was outmaneuvering Donald Trump in Georgia, but that it might not be enough to save Kemp's political future.
"There are two very evident dimensions of the 45th president's 2020 vengeance crusade. First, he has been impressively successful in getting a solid majority of Republican elected officials and rank-and-file activists alike to buy into, or at least refuse to contradict, his big-ass lie about having actually won — nay swept — the 2020 presidential election. Second, he and his bravos really want to draw blood from the Republican elected officials he blames for undermining his efforts to reverse the results before they were confirmed by Congress on January 6," Kilgore wrote. "Chief among them were Georgia secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who certified Biden's victory in the Peach State, and Georgia governor Brian Kemp, who ratified this certification."
Kilgore explained that Raffensperger appears to be toast in his GOP primary, saying "odds now are that Raffensperger won't even make the runoff if there is one."
While Trump helped convince Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA) to run against Raffensperger, his candidate recruitment has so far largely failed in the governor's race.
"Yes, the suddenly Trump-y former Democrat Vernon Jones is in the race, with the former president's blessing (if not his endorsement, so far)," he noted. "But putting aside the issues with Trump, Kemp is a whole lot closer to the Georgia GOP's idea of a governor than a Black ex-Democrat who was pro-choice not long ago and has quite a bit of baggage (including a rape allegation he refuted by claiming a consensus three-way sexual encounter)."
Kilgore noted Trump had reportedly failed to get former Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA) and Georgia state Sen. Burt Jones to challenge Kemp.
"Nor are Trump's 2022 stumbles in Georgia limited to the governorship. He very publicly encouraged University of Georgia football legend Herschel Walker (a friend of Trump's dating back to Walker's days playing for a pro football franchise owned by the mogul) to run against Raphael Warnock when the Democrat pursues a full Senate term next year. Trump's move all but froze the field as other Republicans waited to see what 'Herschel,' as he is universally known in Georgia, would do. But Walker, who currently lives in Texas, is taking his time as Warnock happily raises money, and Republicans could have to scramble for a candidate if the former Heisman Trophy winner ultimately gives the race a pass," Kilgore explained.
However, even if Kemp prevails in the GOP primary, he's still at risk of having his political career ended in the 2022 general election.
"As for Kemp, even if he outfoxes Trump and avoids a serious primary challenge, he will still have a tough general election ahead of him, probably against the woman he barely defeated (after purging quite a few of her voters from the rolls), Stacey Abrams. All the steps he takes, moreover, to convince MAGA voters that he is as savagely reactionary as ever will probably eliminate any credit swing voters might otherwise give him for independence from Trump. But I'm sure Kemp is living one day at a time politically, and so far he's surviving," Kilgore noted.
Read the full report.
MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell held his "MAGA Frank" in New Richmond, Wisconsin on Saturday.
Billing for the event promised the speakers would include, "Mike Lindell, Diamond & Silk, Danielle D'Souza, Dinesh D'Souza, Charlie Kirk, Sheriff Clarke, Chris Cox and Brannon Howse."
Video posted to Twitter showed people streaming out of the event as Lindell talked about, "the greatest revival for Jesus in the history of the world."
Trump has spoken. The exodus begins. #magafrank #frankspeech https://t.co/rNeqa4T70Y— Franky Speech (@Franky Speech) 1623529694.0
An earlier video showed the crowd was not very large to begin with.
I’m not good at estimating crowd size. Imagine the size of a small carnival. #frankspeech #magafrank https://t.co/tDbved7amG— Franky Speech (@Franky Speech) 1623521812.0
But there was plenty of merchandise.
No #FrankSpeech rally would be complete without the grift. #magafrank https://t.co/2qx2gijN0F— Franky Speech (@Franky Speech) 1623518248.0
While the Arizona "audit" of votes in Maricopa County has been widely panned for lacking any legitimacy, among the far right it has become a beacon of hope Republicans hoping Trump will be reinstated as president despite losing the 2020 election.
State legislators from multiple states have trekked to Arizona as Republicans hope the effort will spread across America.
Laurie Roberts of the Arizona Republic has labeled they pilgrimages as "wacko tourism."
"Senate President Karen Fann may be a genius, after all," Roberts sarcastically explained. "Fann has singlehandedly created a new gimmick to bring visitors to our beloved state, just as we enter what I like to call our warm period. You've heard of eco-tourism? Now comes wacko tourism."
"Last week, it was Pennsylvania legislators, making their pilgrimage to Veterans Memorial Coliseum to pick up some tips on how to "audit" the 2020 election.On Tuesday, Alaska was in the house and Georgia, too. This followed a visit from Nevada," she explained. "There are reports that Virginia and Wisconsin were headed our way by week's end, just as our official high temperature rockets from blast furnace fun to full-fledged jaws of hell."
It's not just Republican legislators, now the audit is being visited by a disgraced former governor as he seeks to rehabilitate his image as he attempts a comeback.
A Twitter account linked to the audit posted a photo of former Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens posing with Arizona state Senators Wendy Roger and Sonny Borrelli.
Greitens resigned from office in 2018 after being indicted on multiple felony charges and being caught in a scandal over allegedly taking nude pictures of his hairdresser mistress without her consent and threatening to blackmail her.
Greitens announced he is running for the U.S. Senate in 2022, hoping to win the GOP nomination for the open seat created by the retirement of Roy Blunt.
Former Missouri Governor @EricGreitens just met with @WendyRogersAZ and @SonnyBorrelli before touring the counting… https://t.co/riJ3Dt4DTj— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623532405.0
A Legislative Delegation from Wisconsin led by @RepJanel, Chair of the Campaigns & Elections Committee (the Committ… https://t.co/hxjNODPIzo— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623531879.0
GA State Senator Marty Harbin just toured the audit floor and received a brief with AZ State Senator @SonnyBorrelli! https://t.co/usy65rB5dl— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623452847.0
Utah State Rep. Stephen Christiansen just toured the audit floor today with AZ State Senator @WendyRogersAZ. https://t.co/jx25CM1ecX— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623439530.0
VA Senator @AmandaChaseVA toured the audit floor today with AZ Senator @WendyRogersAZ. Thank you! 🇺🇸 https://t.co/c2jEI0Ga1H— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623370833.0
Colorado State Rep. Ron Hanks toured the audit floor and gives this audit a thumbs up. More to come on CO! https://t.co/gQxL3G1rO3— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623354854.0
GOP Chairwoman @kelliwardaz and Dr Mike Ward toured the counting floor today and received a brief from the audit te… https://t.co/eFwjYpxoke— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623290384.0
Georgia Patriot and candidate for Governor @RepVernonJones visits the forensic audit and takes on the fake news med… https://t.co/m1TxBihLNd— Audit War Room (@Audit War Room) 1623272080.0
Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Raw Story Investigates and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.
$95 / year — Just $7.91/month
I want to Support More
$14.99 per month