In his column for the Daily Beast, conservative Matt Lewis reacted with disgust at Donald Trump actions this week as he increasingly inserted himself into tight election races and issued vague rumblings that his followers should stay home on election day if the Republican Party nominee in their local election isn't a Trump partisan.
As Lewis notes, Trump is once again using threats to get his way with easily-cowed GOP office-holders with no concern whatsoever whether the Republican Party reclaims the House, Senate or White House unless it under his terms.
According to the conservative, Trump is deploying the "madman theory" once used by former president Richard Nixon, that kept world leaders off-guard over fears he was irrational and therefore unpredictable.
Pointing out that Trump seems to be doing all he can to blow Virginia Republican Glenn Youngkin's chances in an election to be held at the beginning of November, Lewis wrote, "This is a glimpse of what Republicans running for Congress nationwide can expect next year. Indeed, mainstream Republicans are already being ritualistically forced to affirm Trump's supposedly stolen re-election (and the nobility of the subsequent insurrection). They are not allowed to just pretend it didn't happen and move on."
He added, "Along those same lines, just hours before the rally in Virginia, Trump released a statement saying, 'If we don't solve the Presidential Election Fraud of 2020 (which we have thoroughly and conclusively documented), Republicans will not be voting in '22 or '24. It is the single most important thing for Republicans to do.'"
That, as Lewis pointed out is a direct threat targetting the GOP's future.
"This should be interpreted as a serious threat because it speaks to the very efficacy of voting. Trump is not saying that he will tell his voters to stay home in 2022 to punish Republicans. He is making a much more furtive and veiled threat: He will tell the voters not to waste their time voting, unless, of course, other Republican politicians (a) buy into the bogus premise that the election was stolen from him, and (b) support whatever election 'reforms' he says will prevent that from happening again. This is a devious way of holding Republican politicians hostage to his demands while avoiding being labeled a spoiler," he wrote.
He added, "the threat is believable, first because Trump doesn't care about the party, and second because Trump has demonstrated that he is careless and erratic. In this regard, he is employing Nixon's "madman theory"—against his own party. Every compromise made to appease him or kick the can down the road (in hopes he will fade away) only empowers him more," before warning, "Elections come and go. Trump is forever. And all he demands is everything."
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