Trump 'humiliated' as Nebraska endorsement flops -- and shows GOP's 'fear' of him is fading: Morning Joe
President of the United States Donald Trump speaking with supporters at an "An Address to Young Americans" event hosted by Students for Trump and Turning Point Action at Dream City Church in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo by Gage Skidmore.

The Republican gubernatorial primary in Nebraska showed former President Donald Trump's grip on the GOP is loosening, according to MSNBC's Joe Scarborough.

Jim Pillen won the GOP primary with the backing of Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts over Trump-backed and scandal-plagued newcomer Charles Herbster and state Sen. Brett Lindstrom, and the "Morning Joe" host said that shows the former president's seal of approval isn't enough to push Republican candidates over the hump.

"If Republicans actually have standards when it comes to those type of charges, then a lot of people that Donald Trump supported are in trouble," Scarborough said. "I will tell you what's also so interesting here is, one Republican heavyweight after another Republican heavyweight, one Republican standard-bearer after another have seemed to go up against Donald Trump since 2015 and lost."

"Ricketts and the Ricketts family went up against Donald Trump and wiped the floor with him," he added. "I was fascinated that, you know, Gov. Ricketts and the Ricketts family had absolutely no fear of Donald Trump and, by the way, what kind of message does that send that a guy with a future in Republican politics is like, 'Eh, I don't care who Trump's for, I'm going all in, and, man, the Ricketts went all in and humiliated Donald Trump in Nebraska."

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Trump still holds sway over the party, Scarborough conceded, but so does tech billionaire Peter Thiel, who pumped $10 million into J.D. Vance's Senate campaign in Ohio, and the wealthy Ricketts family poured money into the Nebraska race.

"How fascinating that the Ricketts basically tell Trump to get lost in Nebraska and humiliating [him] there, and I think what is so new this year, what we're seeing is the fear that everybody in the party used to have for Trump, top to bottom, that fear's going away," Scarborough said. "DeSantis hasn't flinched for months, when they keep wanting to hear him say that he won't run if Donald Trump runs, [Mike] Pompeo won't say it, Chris Christie won't say it."

"A lot of Republicans, they just don't fear Donald Trump anymore," Scarborough added, "and that fear, I mean, that's how he maintained power for so long in the party."

Watch the segment below or at this link.

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