On Saturday, in the wake of President Donald Trump's fiery culture-war rhetoric at the Fourth of July celebration at Mount Rushmore, The Washington Post reported that Republicans in Congress are increasingly repulsed and fearful of the president's appeals to racism.
"On Capitol Hill, some Republicans fret — mostly privately, to avoid his wrath — that Trump’s fixation on racial and other cultural issues leaves their party running against the currents of change," reported Robert Costa and Philip Rucker. "Coupled with the coronavirus pandemic and related economic crisis, these Republicans fear he is not only seriously impairing his reelection chances but also jeopardizing the GOP Senate majority and its strength in the House."
As polls reveal the public is turning on the president amid his mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter protests, Trump has leaned heavily into opposing the desecration of monuments and statues with racist origins. At his speech in South Dakota, Trump called for the establishment of a "National Garden of American Heroes."
“The Senate incumbent candidates are not taking the bait and are staying as far away from this as they can,” GOP consultant and Chamber of Commerce strategist Scott Reed told the Times. “The problem is this is no longer just Trump’s Twitter feed. It’s expanded to the podium, and that makes it more and more difficult for these campaigns."
Former Gov. John Kasich (R-OH) agreed. “They coddled this guy the whole time and now it’s like some rats are jumping off of the sinking ship. It’s just a little late,” he said. “It’s left this nation with a crescendo of hate not only between politicians but between citizens ... It started with Charlottesville and people remained silent then, and we find ourselves in this position now.”
You can read more here.