President Donald Trump's supporters will remain irredeemable until they come to terms with their own capacity for hatred, according to one prominent conservative.
David Frum, a former speechwriter for George W. Bush, called out the president's supporters in a new column for The Atlantic for withdrawing into self-pity after hundreds of them stormed the U.S. Capitol in a violent attempt to overturn Trump's election loss, and were even willing to execute Vice President Mike Pence in their lust for power.
"An idiotic, futile coup attempt can nonetheless get people killed," Frum wrote. "Five people died. That number could easily have been much higher. Members of Congress could have been among them. Pence could have been among them."
The president's supporters had previously plotted to kidnap and execute Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, and armed Trump loyalists on Jan. 6 menaced elected officials in Georgia, New Mexico and Washington State, and Frum dismissed comparisons between those actions and violence that erupted at summer-long Black Lives Matter protests.
"Unlike the looters who sacked stores during the protests in the summer of 2020, these pro-Trump groups were engaged in political action, not private criminality," Frum wrote. "Unlike the radicals who besieged the federal courthouse in Portland, the pro-Trump groups are not a hopeless fringe group. They mobilized to support the man who heads the government — and they are praised and encouraged by him."
The militants who barged into the Capitol looking to physically harm Trump's political enemies were radicalized by the president himself, and Frum argued that the Republican Party will continue its death spiral until its voters took responsibility for their own roles in the coup attempt -- whether or not they traveled to Washington.
"If the conservative world is to pull itself out of the moral wreck into which it has been led by Trump, its leaders will have to do better than [Sen. Marco] Rubio did in his blame-everybody-but-me video," Frum wrote. "They will have to reckon with a long record of inflammatory deceit, a reckoning with a politics founded on nothing bigger than fear and resentment.""
"There is no redemption without repentance," he added. "There is no repentance without accountability. There is no accountability without consequences. Republican support for the impeachment and removal of President Trump, and his disqualification from ever again holding office, is the first step toward the renewal and recovery of the party that will otherwise bear the mark of Trump even after he departs office."