A Washington Post report walked through how the far-right Trump-wing of the Republican Party are running against their own party and intend to make life very difficult for GOP members if they get elected.
The story cited former Army Green Beret Joe Kent, who is running for a Congressional seat in Washington state against a Republican who voted to impeach Donald Trump, Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler.
Kent has no interest in taking on a fight with the Democratic Party. Instead, he's ready to force Republicans into votes that will make their lives difficult. He's hoping to do the impeachment of President Joe Biden and an investigation into the 2020 presidential election results.
"A lot of it will be shaming Republicans," Kent said. "I need to be going after the people in the Republican Party who want to go back to go-along-to-get-along. It’s put up or shut up."
The hope for the MAGA members and the candidates is to expand the MAGA caucus in the GOP and in elected offices in general.
"Key to the strategy is to coalesce MAGA-movement support around certain candidates running in Republican primaries in heavily pro-Trump congressional districts where the primary victor is all but assured to win the seat in November," said the Post. "That effort is being bolstered by redistricting, as state lawmakers draw districts even more partisan than the current lines."
There were 45 congressional districts in the 2020 election in which Donald Trump won by 15 percent or more. The new GOP-drawn maps are likely to make those seats even more Republican-leaning.
“We should be gaining MAGA seats,” Trump political ally Boris Epshteyn claimed on Steve Bannon's online show. "It’s not just about 'let’s add some Republican seats,' it’s about 'let’s add MAGA strongholds.'"
But having the GOP swing so drastically to the right puts American democracy in even greater peril, according to GOP strategist Rick Wilson, who now works with the Lincoln Project.
"We’re looking at a nihilistic Mad Max hellscape. It will be all about the show of 2024 to bring Donald Trump back into power. … They will impeach Biden, they will impeach Harris, they will kill everything," said Wilson.
Many of these candidates are part of Trump's slate of vengeance, where he is going after anyone he feels slighted him in votes for President Joe Biden's infrastructure bill and the second impeachment. It's unclear how far he's willing to go, but Trump will at least hand an endorsement to his preferred candidates. Some will likely get money, independent expenditures and possibly even a big Trump rally. However, there's also the possibility that Trump will do very little in terms of financial support for his candidates because he'll need the money for his own legal fees.
If Trump abandons them, they always have people like Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Lauren Boebert (R-CO), all of whom have declared themselves Republicans in Trump's image. Greene and Gaetz went off on a fundraising tour through 2021 where they met with Trump supporters and promoted conspiracy theories spreading through the new GOP.
So, while there are likely some traditional Republicans who could hold on in 2022, the GOP is likely to make the most dramatic shift yet to the far-right, remaking the party for many years to come.