How little regard does Trump have for the current Republican governor? So little that in a campaign appearance in Georgia over the weekend, Trump sounded like he would be just fine with Stacey Abrams, Kemp’s 2018 opponent, becoming governor in 2022.
“And Stacey Abrams, who still has not conceded, and that’s OK,” Trump said of the former state senator. “Stacey, would you like to take his place? It’s OK with me.”
” … Of course having her, I think, might be better than having your existing governor, if you want to know what I think. Might very well be better.”
In several rants against Kemp (and Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger), Trump argued that the reason neither was willing to overturn the 2020 election results in the state was because they were afraid of Abrams. (Abrams formed a voting rights and accessibility group following her narrow 2018 loss to Kemp.)
“Brian Kemp, Raffensperger, and your state leaders surrendered to Stacey Abrams,” Trump insisted. “They totally surrendered to her. I think he’s afraid of Stacey Abrams. I don’t understand that. Stacy, you know, you have a great team. OK?”
And then he did it again.
“Your state leaders surrendered to Stacey Abrams and allowed themselves to be bullied into a disastrous consent decree that effectively abolished signature verification and paved the way for massive fraud,” said Trump. “And they don’t want to do anything about it. They don’t.”
What Trump’s praise for Abrams and harsh criticism of Kemp (and Raffensperger) should remind us all of is this basic fact: Donald Trump is as much (or even more) at war with his own party as he is with Democrats.
Just look at what Trump’s done since losing the 2020 election last November:
* Endorsed a GOP primary challenger to Lisa Murkowski, who he has said is “bad” for the Last Frontier.
* Endorsed a GOP primary challenger to Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming.
* Endorsed a GOP primary challenger to Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler in Washington state.
* Savaged Anthony Gonzalez when the Ohio Republican congressman announced his retirement.
* Attacked Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey for not overturning the 2020 election results in the state.
* Actively sought to recruit someone to challenge Mitch McConnell for the latter’s place as the top-ranking Republican in the Senate.
There’s more, but you get the idea: Donald Trump is more focused on bringing down those Republicans who he believes have been disloyal to him than he is on beating Democrats in 2022. Because he simply cannot get over the fact that he lost the 2020 election fair and square. And neither Kemp nor Raffensperger nor any other Republican elected official did something to him to make him lose. He just lost.
Don’t believe me? Listen to what South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham told Trump in June, according to an account in the new book “Peril:”
“You can prosecute the case against Biden better than anybody,” Graham told Trump. “But you can’t do that and complain about losing at the same time. … If we come back in 2022 and recapture the House and take back the Senate, you’ll get your fair share of credit. If we fail to take back the House and the Senate in 2022, Trumpism, I think, will die. January 6 will be your obituary. If we don’t win in 2022, we’re screwed.”
Trump, because he is Trump, didn’t listen to Graham — as evidenced by his seeming support for Abrams, who is openly mulling another bid for governor against Kemp next year.
Why not? Because Donald Trump is all about doing what’s good for Donald Trump, not for the Republican Party. It’s amazing that the majority of Republican elected officials still haven’t figured that out.