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Trumpism seizes post-political GOP as mainstream conservatism fades

ORLANDO, Florida – For decades the same ritual has taken place following Republican election defeats.

Moderate, establishment-aligned party officials would argue that the candidates had veered too far to the right on issues such as immigration, as well as in their language, and would recommend a return to the political center. And Conservatives would argue that Republicans have given up on real faith and need to go back to first principles to distinguish themselves from Democrats and claim victory.

One could be forgiven for having missed this debate in the aftermath of 2020, because it is barely taking place. Republicans have entered a sort of post-political moment where the most animated forces in the party are the emotions, not the problems.

This change was highlighted last weekend at the Conservative Political Action Conference, where the Trumpification of the annual rally and the former president’s vow of revenge on his intra-party criticisms made headlines.

But what was not said at the event is just as striking. There has been very little discussion of why Republicans have lost the Presidency, House, and Senate over the past four years, nor much debate over what platform they should pursue to rebuild the party.

The lack of soul-searching is in part due to the surprise gains of Republicans in the House and the denial by many activists that they have lost the White House, a false claim enthusiastically perpetuated by former President Donald J. Trump him – even Sunday. , to the delight of the crowd.

The former president, however, was not the only high-profile Republican to demonstrate that confronting Democrats and the news media, while exploiting the party’s grassroots grievances against both, is the best recipe to be saluted at the top. within today’s GOP.

“We can sit down and have academic debates on conservative politics, we can do it,” Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said in a standing ovation in his remarks to CPAC. “But the question is, when the klieg lights get hot, when the left comes after you: will you stay strong, or will you go to bed?”

It’s the party Mr. Trump has remade – and that’s why so many mainstream Republicans are dismayed, or at least alarmed, that Trumpism is replacing conservatism.

“The future of the Republican Party depends on debate and the promotion of big ideas rooted in our belief in limited government constitutionalism,” said Representative Chip Roy of Texas, arguing that the party should orient itself around “the because of the liberation of the American people from the mandates, closures, regulations and taxes imposed by a powerful government. “

Mr. Roy was on one of the few CPAC panels focused on government spending, once a central issue on the right, and used his time to advocate with the audience. “There is nothing more important at the moment,” he said. “We allow Washington, DC to take control of our lives, but we foot the bill.”

If the spectators felt the same sense of urgency, they did not show it.

In his remarks later today, Mr. Trump sought to explain “Trumpism” – “what it means is good business,” he dared – but his potential heirs clearly recognize that the heart of his call is more emotional than the agenda.

Beyond the former president, no Republican in attendance drew a more fervent response than Mr. DeSantis and Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota, two former House members who became first-term governors.

Neither has sketched a new political agenda or presented a new vision for a party that has only won the national popular vote once in more than 30 years. Rather, they drew repeated standing ovations for what they share in common: a shared sense of victimization in the face of media criticism for their handling of the coronavirus crisis and a pugnacious disregard for public health experts who called to more aggressive restrictions in their states.

“I don’t know if you agree with me, but Dr Fauci is very wrong,” Ms Noem said in her remarks, referring to the country’s leading infectious disease specialist. The statement got participants on their feet, even as she glossed over her condition’s high death rate during the pandemic.

Since the dawn of the modern conservative movement in the mid-20th century, there has been an element of right-wing victimization politics – the feeling that powerful liberal forces are pitted against conservatives and that Republicans can send a message with their vote. .

“Bother the Media: Re-elect Bush” was one of the most popular stickers of George HW Bush’s 1992 campaign, now frequently remembered as the gentlemanly antithesis of Mr. Trump. Yet within the Republican Party there has always been debate – intense, immense and very substantial.

In the 1970s, the party clashed over the role of the United States in the world, separating itself from control of the Panama Canal and whether the Soviet Union should be faced with the open hand or the closed fist. In the 80s and 90s, battles over abortion raged, opposition to Roe v. Wade emerging as a litmus test for many on the right.

In the second Bush administration and subsequent years, Republicans were divided over immigration and, again, America’s imprint abroad.

Notably, many of these clashes took place at CPAC. In 2011, Mitch Daniels, then governor of Indiana, gave a high-profile speech at the rally to warn of the growing danger of “the new red threat” – red ink, not the Red Army – which aimed at the Conservatives. overwhelmed by the heavy expenses of George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Former Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, then his son Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, used the conclaves to challenge Bush-style interventionism, delighting young audiences and prompting them to flood the ballot with straw on their behalf.

Not coincidentally, the top three finalists in this year’s straw poll were the three who flouted coronavirus restrictions the most: Mr. Trump, Mr. DeSantis and Ms. Noem.

“They are seen as young strangers sympathetic to Trump,” said Amanda Carpenter, a former GOP Senate aide who now writes for The Bulwark website, of Mr. DeSantis, 42, and Ms. Noem, 49 years.

Interviews with conference attendees suggest that many were drawn to the two governors primarily for their style.

Sany Dash, who sold merchandise at a CPAC booth, explained that she loved Ms. Noem “because she stands up for herself,” adding, “I feel like she’s a Trump woman, except that ‘she is neither rude nor rude. ”

“He’s got just the right amount of Trumpiness going for him,” Brad Franklin, a recent college graduate, said of Mr. DeSantis.

Others pointed out that the governor of Florida has been criticized by the media for his handling of the coronavirus as the state has suffered fewer deaths per capita than several states with Democratic governors.

Ms Noem singled out one of those governors, Andrew M. Cuomo of New York City, in his remarks on Saturday, prompting a cascade of boos.

Something very different happened, however, when Ms Noem brought up politics just long enough to bemoan the increase in the national debt.

“We have forgotten principles that were once close to our hearts,” she said. No one applauded.

Elaina plott contribution to reports.

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Trump promises GOP unity, then attacks Republicans who backed impeachment

ORLANDO, Florida – Former President Donald J. Trump used his first public appearance on Sunday since leaving and moving to Florida to castigate President Biden and insist there is no division within of the Republican Party – before naming all the Republicans who voted in support of his second indictment and asking for their removal from office.

In a speech on the closing day of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, Mr. Trump attacked Democrats, teased a possible presidential candidacy in 2024, and dismissed the grievances that continue to drive much of his left.

“I still miss you? Mr Trump asked the crowd after arriving about an hour late. Speaking for about 90 minutes, he spoke of his “journey” with his supporters, adding, “It’s far from over.”

Mr Trump, who hates being seen as a ‘loser’, repeated his false claims that he won the 2020 election, which he made two months before his supporters rioted deadly as they sought to stop the certification of the vote on the Capitol on January 6.

Then he walked through, by name, every Republicans in the House and Senate who voted in favor of his second impeachment, lingering last on Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming.

“Of course the warmonger, a person who likes to see our troops fight, Liz Cheney. And that? Mr. Trump said, adding, “Get rid of them all.” He vowed to fight against them.

For the first time, he himself invoked the phrase “Trumpism” and described it as an ideology consisting of positions he took during his tenure, including restrictive immigration policies and “good business”.

“We will do what we did from the start, which is to win,” Mr. Trump said. And although he pitched the idea with a few advisers, he went on to say clearly, “I’m not throwing a new party.”

Instead, Mr. Trump repeatedly hit on conservative talking points, eliciting loud applause when he said, “We reject the culture of cancellation.

Condemning Mr Biden’s performance and persisting in his false claims that electoral fraud robbed him of victory in 2020, Mr Trump said, two months after his supporters violently raped the U.S. Capitol, that Democrats “Had just lost the White House”. He added: “I might even decide to beat them a third time.”

Towards the end of his speech, Mr Trump called for “electoral reform” and referred to what he called “abuse” in the 2020 ballot, in which a postal vote was held because of the coronavirus. He called for severe restrictions on postal voting.

“This election has been rigged,” Trump said just over an hour after starting his speech, prompting long chants of “You won! You won! ”Mr. Trump agreed,“ We ​​did it. ”

“They did not have the guts or the courage to make the right decision,” he said in an excoriation from the Supreme Court.

He deviated from the script several times.

Mr. Trump’s biggest applause came on his grievances. He criticized Dr Anthony S. Fauci, the infectious disease expert who worked with the former president and stayed with Mr Biden, and called for an end to coronavirus restrictions that have kept schools closed in all the countries. The schools issue is one that Republicans have repeatedly insisted on heading into the 2022 midterm election, believing it gives them an advantage.

At one point, Mr Trump did something he never did as president – specifically called on people to take the coronavirus vaccines he had been asking for and hoped to help him in his efforts. re-election. But he mocked Mr Biden for tripping at a CNN mayoralty event and attacked him over the president’s comments about the limited number of vaccines available when he took office.

Backstage, before speaking, an aide brought Mr. Trump a full-length mirror to see what he looked like. The former president held a small bottle of hairspray a few inches from his chin and pointed it at his forehead, delivering a jet of spray to his forehead. He drank a Coke Light before going on stage.

While much of the party’s base remains devoted to the 74-year-old former president, some Republicans view him less favorably because of his refusal to accept defeat and his role in inciting the riot. from the Capitol.

A handful of GOP lawmakers have urged the party to move from Mr. Trump, the most prominent Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming, to the third House Republican.

In response, Mr. Trump’s eldest son Donald Trump Jr. repeatedly attacked Ms. Cheney in his remarks to CPAC on Friday, and the former president was scheduled to target her himself on Sunday.

Many of his advisers, however, urged him to use his time on stage in Orlando to deliver a forward-looking speech.

To that end, they also released a snippet in which Mr. Trump would assume his successor in a manner almost identical to what he said about Mr. Biden when he himself was president, when he was president. repeatedly told his supporters that Mr. Biden would destroy. the country.

Unaware that schools remained closed during his own presidency, Mr. Trump also planned to call on Mr. Biden to open schools “now. No more special interest deadlines! “

Whether or not Mr. Trump would choose to follow a teleprompter script was still an open question. And maybe more than ever now that he has scampered from the White House to his Palm Beach resort, stripped of his social media accounts.

His speech was written by two of the former president’s speech writers in the White House, Ross Worthington and Vince Haley, with input from other advisers.

The former president’s aides were looking for an opportunity for him to reappear and debated whether to host a rally-type event or take advantage of the forum of CPAC, which moved to Mr. Trump from the suburbs. Washington because Florida has more lenient coronavirus restrictions.

Mr. Trump and his aides worked with him on the speech for several days in his newly constructed office above the ballroom at Mar-a-Lago, his private club near the Atlantic Ocean. Without his Twitter thread, Mr. Trump used specific moments in the news cycle – the death of radio host Rush Limbaugh and the Tiger Woods car crash – to inject himself into the news cycle. information.

Outside of prepared statements, however, he has said much less since January 20 about the future of the GOP and its own lingering ambitions.

Mr Trump’s advisers have said he does not plan to discuss a litany of his own accomplishments, and instead will try to regain some of the way he presented himself as a candidate in 2016. Mr Trump has made it clear to allies and advisers that at least he wants to run for president again in 2024, which he was to tease in the speech.

Yet even with a built-in supporting audience, not everyone in the party thinks Trumpism is the way to go.

“CPAC is not the whole of the Republican Party,” said Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, one of seven Republican senators who voted to convict Mr. Trump on the House impeachment charges on Sunday.

Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Cassidy said Republicans need to pay attention to voters who have changed over the past four years. “If we talk to the less secure voters, who have gone from President Trump to President Biden, we win. Otherwise, we lose, ”Mr. Cassidy said.

Jonathan Martin reported from Orlando, Florida and Maggie Haberman from New York. Erin Schaff contributed reporting from Orlando.

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In Statehouses, myth of stolen elections fuels GOP campaign to rewrite the rules

Ms Bernier of Wisconsin, for example, said she saw no problem with a bill that would allocate one ballot box to voters in cities like New Berlin, with 40,000 residents, and one for voters in Milwaukee, with 590,000 inhabitants. There were no drop boxes at all, she noted, until state officials made an emergency exception during the pandemic.

“The Legislature could say that no drop box is needed at all,” she said.

Nathaniel Persily, political scientist and election specialist at Stanford University, said he disagreed. Presidential elections always attract more voters, he said, but the hard work of democracy often occurs during off-year votes for smaller offices where interest is lower. In these elections, “if there are barriers placed in the path of voters, they will not stand,” he said.

Mike Noble, a public opinion expert from Phoenix, wondered if Trumpian’s Arizona Legislature’s anti-fraud program has political legs, even though polls show a level of belief Republican in the stolen election myth of Mr. Trump which he calls “staggering.”

Republicans who consider themselves more moderate make up about a third of party support in Arizona, he said, and they are much less likely to believe the myth. And they can be turned off by a legislature that wants to reduce mailings of postal ballots in a state where voters – especially Republicans – have long voted overwhelmingly by mail.

“I don’t see how a rational person would see where the advantage is,” he said.

Some other Republicans apparently agree. In Kentucky, which has some of the toughest voting laws in the country, the staunchly Republican State House voted almost unanimously on Friday to allow early voting, albeit only three days, and online requests for postal votes. Both were first tried during the pandemic and, most importantly, were popular with voters and county election officials.

If that kind of recognition of November’s successes resonated in other Republican states, Mr. Persily and another electoral scholar, Charles Stewart III of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, wrote in a recent study, it could bode well for alleviating deep divisions over future elections. rules. If the stolen election myth continues to guide Republican politics, Mr Persily said, it could predict a future with two types of elections in which voting rights, turnout and confidence in the results would be significantly different, according to the Minister. party that wrote the rules. .

“These trajectories are on the horizon,” he said. “Some states take a deception approach to regulating voting that is only distantly linked to fraud issues. And that could lead to massive collateral damage for voting rights. “

Susan C. Beachy contributed to the research.

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Romney predicts Trump would win the 2024 GOP nomination if he ran for president.

Utah Senator Mitt Romney said on Tuesday that he believed Donald J. Trump would win the Republican nomination for president if he ran for his old job in 2024, another indication of Mr. Trump in the party.

“I don’t know if he’ll run in 2024 or not, but if he does, I’m pretty sure he’ll win the nomination,” Romney told the DealBook DC Policy Project.

Mr Romney noted that “a lot can happen by 2024,” but added: “I look at the polls, and the polls show that among the names put forward as potential candidates in 2024, if you put the president Trump in there among the Republicans, he wins in a landslide.

Mr. Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential candidate, is the only Republican senator to vote to convict Mr. Trump in his two impeachment trials.

Asked by Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times about whether he would campaign against Mr. Trump, Mr. Romney replied, “I will no longer vote for President Trump. I haven’t voted for him in the past. And I would probably be behind someone who, in my opinion, represented more of the small wing of the Republican Party that I represent.

Mr. Romney’s comments were a clear sign of Mr. Trump’s enduring position within the Republican Party, even after his election defeat last year and his impeachment for inciting aggression against the Capitol on January 6.

“He has by far the biggest voice and a big impact in my party,” Mr. Romney said.

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Pennsylvania GOP pressure for more power over judiciary raises alarm bells

She added, “It’s far too much control for one branch to have over another branch, especially where one of its responsibilities is to rule over the excesses of the legislative branch.”

If the Republican bill becomes law, Pennsylvania would become just the fifth state in the country, after Louisiana, Kentucky, Mississippi and Illinois, to fully map its justice system into constituencies, according to the Brennan Center. And other states could soon join Pennsylvania in trying to redraw the courts.

Republicans in the Texas legislature, which is also controlled by the GOP, recently introduced a bill that would move districts to state courts of appeals by moving certain counties to different districts, causing an uproar among Democrats in State who saw the new districts as weakening the vote. power of black and Latin American communities in judicial elections and potentially adding to the Republican tilt of Texas courts.

Gilberto Hinojosa, chairman of the Texas Democratic Party, called the bill a “pure takeover designed to prevent blacks and Latinos from influencing the courts as their numbers in the state increase.” .

These judicial redistribution battles are taking shape as Republican-controlled legislatures across the country explore new restrictions on voting after the 2020 election. In Georgia, Republicans in the state legislature seek a host of new laws that would make voting more difficult, including banning drop-off boxes and imposing drastic restrictions on postal voting. Similar bills in Arizona would limit mail-in voting, including banning the state from sending mail-in vote requests. And in Texas, Republican lawmakers want to limit early voting periods.

The Republicans’ national effort follows a successful four-year campaign by party lawmakers in Washington to reshape the federal court system with conservative judges. Led by Senator Mitch McConnell, until recently Majority Leader, and Mr. Trump, the Senate confirmed 231 federal justices, as well as three new Supreme Court justices, during the four-year tenure of the former president, according to data maintained by Russell Wheeler, a researcher at the Brookings Institution.

In a state like Pennsylvania, which has two densely populated democratic cities and large rural areas, this could give sparsely populated and more conservative places disproportionate representation, particularly if lawmakers resort to a gerrymandering tactic similar to that used. in Pennsylvania in 2011.

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The GOP and public opinion

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Out of political interest, Republicans in Congress had good reason to abandon Donald Trump as their party’s de facto leader.

Trump is unpopular with most Americans, and he has been throughout his political career. He was only able to win the presidency in 2016 with the help of some unusual factors – including an unpopular opponent, intervention from Russia and the FBI director, and razor-thin victories in three swing states.

Today, Trump is a defeated president for a term that never won 47 percent of the vote, and political parties are generally happy to pass presidents who lose reelection.

This would have been true even before Trump’s reaction to his defeat. He became the first president in U.S. history to attempt to overturn an election result and he instigated a host of supporters who fiercely attacked Congress as he gathered to certify the results. (Here is the latest information on what he knew during the riot.) In the Senate this weekend, Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, said Trump was “practically and morally responsible” for the attack and took it down. accused of “shameful breach of duty.” . “

Partly because of the riot, Trump left office with an approval rating of just 39%, according to FiveThirtyEight. Several recent polls have shown that a majority of Americans believe the Senate should condemn him and disqualify him from future office.

So why didn’t the Republicans in the Senate do it?

There are two important parts to the answer.

The most obvious is the short-term political danger to Republicans. According to polls, around 70% of Republican voters continue to strongly support Trump. A similar share says they would be less likely to vote for a Republican senator who voted to condemn Trump, according to Li Zhou of Vox.

For Republican politicians, turning against Trump always presents a significant risk of ending his career, as did Jeff Flake, the former senator from Arizona, and Jeff Sessions, the former attorney general. Of the seven Republican senators who voted for the conviction, only one – Lisa Murkowski of Alaska – is at risk of being re-elected next year, Burgess everett of Politico noted. And the seven are already facing a flashback in their home country.

The second part of the answer is more subtle but no less important. Today’s Republican Party cares less about national public opinion than it used to be – or today’s Democratic Party is.

The Republican Party of the past won elections by convincing most Americans that it would do a better job than Democrats to run the country. Ronald Reagan, Richard Nixon and Dwight Eisenhower each won at least 57% of the vote in their re-election campaigns. George W. Bush won 51 percent, largely by appealing to swing voters on national security, education, immigration and other issues. A party focused on rebuilding a national majority probably couldn’t stay attached to Trump.

But the modern Republican Party has found ways other than majority support to achieve its goals.

He enjoys a great built-in Senate advantage, which gives more power to rural and heavily white states. The filibuster also helps Republicans more than Democrats. In the House and in state legislatures, the two parties have backed off, but Republicans have done more. In the courts, Republicans have been more aggressive in putting judges on the bench and preventing Democratic presidents from doing so. In the Electoral College, Democrats currently waste more votes than Republicans on winning big state-level victories.

All of this helps explain Trump’s second acquittal. The Republican Party is in the middle of the worst run any party has suffered – in American history – in the popular vote in the presidential election, after losing seven of the last eight. Still, the party has had a good few decades, politically. He figured out how to be successful with the support of minorities.

Republican-appointed judges dominate the Supreme Court. Republicans are optimistic about the possibility of taking back control of the House and Senate next year (even if they win fewer votes across the country). Taxes on the rich are near their lowest level in a century. Democrats have failed to implement many of their biggest priorities – on climate change, medicare, minimum wage, preschool education, gun control, immigration, and more. .

Yes, Trump’s acquittal flouts public opinion. But it still might not cost the political power of the Republicans.

Learn more about impeachment:

  • McConnell’s actions – voting for acquittal while blaming Trump – was an attempt “both to please Trump supporters and to appeal to Republicans repelled by Trump,” said Carl Hulse, chief correspondent for the Times in Washington.

  • President Biden wanted Trump to be convicted, but the speedy trial at least allows Biden to move his agenda forward, starting with a virus-fighting bill.

  • At least six people who worked as security guards for Roger Stone, a Trump ally, stormed the Capitol on January 6, according to a Times investigation.

  • The acquittal has rekindled speculation about Trump’s daughter-in-law’s electoral prospects.

Lives lived: Reggie Jones began his lifeguard career at Jones Beach on Long Island in 1944. He remained with the job for the next 64 summers, rescuing swimmers until he was 70. Jones has died aged 93.

Less than two years ago, Rihanna, one of the biggest stars in the world, and LVMH, one of the biggest luxury groups in the world, announced a collaboration: the fashion house Fenty. The early reception was rather positive. Fenty was “glamorous but not pretentious,” as Emilia Petrarca wrote in The Cut.

Still, Fenty took a hiatus last week. What caused the failure?

The pandemic played a role. Building a new brand takes time, and shutting down has hurt much of the fashion industry. But businesses and brands that collapse during an economic downturn typically had pre-existing issues, and Fenty fits that model.

On the one hand, it was much more expensive than other products in Rihanna’s empire, which includes Fenty Beauty, a successful makeup line, and Savage x Fenty, a lingerie brand. A Fenty hoodie, for example, costs $ 300 and a turtleneck mini dress costs $ 740. “Celebrity-centric fashion lines tend to perform better at prices accessible in the mass market,” as Marc Bain writes in Quartz.

The brand also tended to use simpler construction and fabrics to keep prices lower, reports The Business of Fashion, resulting in products “cheaper than Dior, but not as desirable.” Most people who buy luxury clothing see it as an investment, told us Elizabeth Paton, who covers fashion for The Times. “Why buy Fenty if they can buy a Vuitton handbag instead that won’t lose its value?”

Friday’s spelling pangram was halogen. Here is today’s puzzle – or you can play it online.

Here are today’s mini-crosswords and a hint: feel bad (four letters).

If you want to play more, find all of our games here.

Thanks for spending part of your morning with The Times. See you tomorrow. – David

Reader Comments: Dr Thomas Frieden, the former CDC chief, wrote to say he agreed with Friday’s newsletter on the dangers of Covid absolutism – but disagreed that shedding trans fats was another example of problematic absolutism. “Trans fats are an unnecessary toxic killing chemical and we need to be clear about this with the public,” he wrote. You can read more about Resolve to Save Lives.

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Breaking with GOP, top Conservative lawyer says Trump can be tried

But Mr. Cooper seemed to be trying to change his mind. He wrote in his opinion piece that shortly after the vote, legal scholars’ understanding of the issue changed and “revealed the serious weakness of Mr. Paul’s analysis.”

“The senators who supported Mr. Paul’s motion,” he wrote, “should reconsider their point of view and judge the former president’s fault on the merits.”

The question of constitutionality could arise quickly when the trial opens on Tuesday. While Senate leaders were still debating the precise structure of the trial, prosecutors and Mr. Trump’s defense team were bracing for the possibility that Mr. Paul or another senator could force a second vote on the matter on the day. opening, before either party comes into conflict. their full presentations.

Mr. Cooper has a long and deep history in the conservative legal movement. He grew up in Alabama and, although he did not attend an Ivy League law school, interned for Judge William H. Rehnquist in 1978 before becoming Chief Justice, and at one time where Judge Rehnquist was considered the most conservative member of the court. .

Mr Cooper became the head of the Justice Department’s legal counsel’s office during the Reagan administration, writing several very conservative and controversial interpretations of the law, including one on whether employers could refuse to hire someone who might have AIDS.

As a private lawyer, he defended issues like prayer in school and was an active member of the Federalist Society. In 2010, when the Republican National Association of Lawyers named him Republican Lawyer of the Year, there were three speakers for Mr. Cooper: Mr. Bolton; NRA chief Wayne LaPierre; and Ed Meese, an attorney general under Ronald Reagan who was considered one of the most conservative in the history of the ministry.

At the start of the Trump administration, Mr. Cooper – who is a longtime friend of Mr. Sessions – was considered the Solicitor General. But Mr. Cooper remained in private practice, becoming Mr. Sessions’ attorney as he became embroiled in a controversy related to the Russia investigation. In the second half of the Trump presidency, Mr. Cooper represented Mr. Bolton and his deputy, Charles Kupperman, in Mr. Trump’s first impeachment trial.

Mr. Cooper continued to represent Mr. Bolton as the Department of Justice sued him to recover the money he had earned from a damning book he published on Mr. Trump.

Nicolas fandos contribution to reports.

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Rejecting calls to resign, Liz Cheney says GOP must get past Trump

WASHINGTON – Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming delved deeper into the Republicans’ identity crisis on Sunday, warning her party on the eve of a Senate impeachment trial not to “look beyond” the role of the former President Donald J. Trump in the attack of a violent attack on the Capitol and a culture of conspiracy perched in their ranks.

In her first TV interview since pushing back on an attempt by Mr. Trump’s allies to oust him from the House leadership for his vote to impeach him, Ms. Cheney said Republican voters had been “lied to” by a president eager to steal an election with allegations of widespread electoral fraud. She warned that the party risked being excluded from power if it did not show a majority of Americans that it could be trusted to lead the truth.

“The idea that the election was stolen or that the election was rigged was a lie, and people need to understand that,” Ms. Cheney said on “Fox News Sunday”. “We have to make sure that as Republicans we are the party of truth and that we are honest about what really happened in 2020 so that we have a chance to win in 2022 and reclaim the White House in 2024. “

She added that Mr. Trump “has no role as leader of our party in the future.”

The remarks made it clear that Ms Cheney, a prominent Republican voice trying to push the party back to its traditional political roots, had no intention of backing down her criticism of the former president after two attempts last week to push the party back to its traditional political roots. punish for his impeachment vote. In Washington, his critics forced a vote in an attempt to oust him as speaker of the House Republican Conference, but that failed overwhelmingly on a secret ballot. And on Saturday, the Wyoming Republican Party censored her and called for her resignation.

Responding to that call, Ms Cheney said on Sunday that she would not resign and suggested that Republicans in her home country continued to be fed false information about what had happened. It came days after privately rejecting a request by Republican House Leader, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, to apologize to her conference for the way she behaved in the impeachment vote, according to two people familiar with the exchange, which was the first reported Sunday by Axios.

“The party people are wrong,” she told Fox News of the January 6 attack, which, along with the protests nearby, killed five people, including a Capitol Hill police officer. Referring to the Black Lives Matter movement, she added, “They believe BLM and antifa were behind what happened here on Capitol Hill. It just isn’t, it’s not true, and we’re going to have a lot of work to do.

First-hand testimony, videos, criminal records and a host of other evidence leave no doubt that Mr. Trump’s supporters carried out the attack, believing they could prevent Congress from formalizing President Biden’s electoral victory.

Although she declined to say whether she would vote to convict Mr. Trump if she were a senator, Ms. Cheney urged Republicans to carefully consider the charge and the evidence. She also raised the possibility that a tweet Mr. Trump sent out as the violence began to unfold criticizing former Vice President Mike Pence for refusing to attempt to single-handedly reverse the election result was ” a premeditated effort to provoke violence ”.

“What we already know is the most serious violation of his oath of office by any president in the history of the country, and it’s not something we can just look beyond or pretend.” of not having happened or trying to move on, ”Ms. Cheney said. She urged her party to “focus on substance, politics and issues” rather than sticking to Mr. Trump.

This message is unlikely to pass well with large swathes of Republicans. Public opinion polls suggest Mr. Trump remains by far the most popular national figure in his party, and Republican senators appear to be lining up overwhelmingly to acquit him on the charge of “inciting an insurgency” that Ms. Cheney supported.

Ms Cheney also sharply criticized Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican rookie from Georgia, whose QAnon background and a slew of anti-Semitic and Islamophobic conspiracy theories rocked the House last week. Ms. Cheney said Ms. Greene’s views “have no place in our public discourse”.

“We are Lincoln’s party,” Ms. Cheney said. “We are not the party of QAnon or anti-Semitism or Holocaust deniers, or white supremacist or conspiracy theories.”

Some prominent Republican senators backed Ms. Cheney on Sunday, saying they would carefully review the impeachment case and seek to push the party back towards conservative political arguments rather than personality.

“Our party is right now, if you will, on fire,” said Republican Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana. “We win if we have policies that affect the families sitting around the table.”

Republican Senator Patrick J. Toomey of Pennsylvania said he was “really encouraged” by the House’s vote to keep Ms. Cheney in her leadership role. “They could have voted as they saw fit, and they kept his role,” he said on CNN’s “State of the Union”. “This is how you start to keep this party united and united and to think about how we are doing in the post-Trump era.”

But Ms Cheney, the daughter of a legendary Wyoming Republican family – her father, Dick Cheney, also represented the state in the House before being vice president – still faces the likelihood of a motivated primary challenge. for the 2022 elections.

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The GOP walks a tightrope

On Politics The GOP is a tightrope walker Liz Cheney and a Georgian extremist both claim victories (for now): this is your morning advice sheet.

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Jim Justice, GOP Governor, Explains Why Biden Has To ‘Go Big’ With Covid Aid

The chances that Democrats would succeed in pushing through a major economic bailout were boosted this week by an unexpected source: Gov. Jim Justice of West Virginia, a Republican. Mr. Justice said Monday, in consecutive talks with CNN and MSNBC, that Congress should “go big” and not worry about the federal deficit.

Or, as the governor put it in his signature folk style, “We need to stop counting the egg-sucking legs of cows, count the cows and get moving.” (Rough translation: stop worrying about the details and adopt an invoice.)

Indirectly, Mr Justice’s comments contained a stern rebuke from Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, a Democrat, who had spoken to GOP colleagues about a smaller relief program that would send checks to fewer Americans and cost the government less.

Perhaps because of Mr. Justice’s insistence, Mr. Manchin, the Senate’s most conservative Democrat, agreed on Tuesday to vote with his party to advance the president’s $ 1.9 trillion stimulus package. Biden using budget reconciliation, a process that would allow a bill to ultimately go through a simple majority. Mr Manchin said on Wednesday that the $ 1.9 trillion price tag would be acceptable if the bill had a bipartisan contribution.

West Virginia has also made national headlines for its success in rolling out coronavirus vaccines. It leads all states in the percentage of the population, 4%, that has received both blows.

In an interview with the New York Times on Wednesday, Mr. Justice, the descendant of a coal family and apparently the richest man in West Virginia, discussed the stimulus, the vaccines, his loyalty to Donald J. Trump and the possibility of challenging Mr Mandchin in 2024. The interview has been slightly edited and condensed for clarity.

Speaking to Congress about the stimulus package, you said, “If we throw money away now, so what?” It doesn’t sound very republican.

We absolutely have to stop thinking first and foremost, “What’s the right thing for Republicans or Democrats to do?” I have been a businessman all my life and I know that when you have a real problem you can’t get out of it. Too often we try to cut everything down and not fund it properly.

If we ended up wasting a few bucks and that got the economy going again, and that helped everyone out there as much as we can who are really hurting, wouldn’t we be much better off than trying to do it? . just match the shoe size to the foot and undersize the shoe size where you couldn’t even walk?

I would much rather give someone a pair of shoes that are a little too big than a pair that are too small to fit on.

Did you speak to Senator Manchin to make him understand your point of view?

I do not have. Everyone knows what I’m thinking very well. I expressed the need for this nation to be bold and grow.

Senator Shelley Moore Capito, the Republican Senator from West Virginia, was part of a GOP group that met with President Biden to talk about a much smaller stimulus package, offering checks for $ 1,000 instead of $ 1,400 . What do you think of this position?

I always come back to the exact same thing, and it’s this: At the end of the day, if we overdo it, the downside risk is minimal. If we don’t, the downside risk is enormous.

You are limited for one term as governor. Are you planning to run for the Senate in 2024?

No really not. My makeup is not about being one of the 100 and trying to go through a decision process and everything. You know, I’m a CEO. If I can keep doing good things for West Virginia, I’m going to do it, and then I’m probably going to disappear around sunset.

About 11 percent of all Western Virginians received the first dose of the vaccine, higher than in any other state except Alaska. West Virginia said a few days ago, it had become the first state to complete the second round of vaccinations for all residents of nursing homes. What advice would you give to other governors?

What we did in West Virginia was we recruited and recruited everyone. We brought our local pharmacies, our local clinics, and we put our National Guard to work. I said that we are not going to have our vaccines on the shelves, we are going to distribute them to people.

It is an absolute evangelical fact: last week we had 108.1% in the arms of people [leveraging extra doses from vials] of the vaccines we received – our first doses. And 70 percent of our second round doses. And we did it week after week after week. For the past three or four weeks, every dose that comes into West Virginia is in someone’s arm by nightfall the following Sunday.

We are the third oldest state with the most chronic diseases. We could do the same in any state in the country if people were to run the coin that we developed here, because it’s a real coin and it works.

A Republican member of the state legislature, Derrick Evans, was accused after storming the Capitol on January 6, he resigned his seat. Did Donald Trump incite an insurgency?

I really don’t think so. I think the impeachment that is going on is a shame.

You know, I really, really think we have to be respectful of all the good things the Trump administration has done. There must have been times when, you know, Donald was loud in his comments, but that’s exactly how Donald Trump is. It’s just his personality.

I know the Trump family. I know them very well. There is no way in God’s land that they tolerated everything that happened with the rush of the Capitol of our nation.

Under the Trump administration, coal production has remained stable but low. In 2019, production was the lowest since 1978 and the United States got more energy from renewables than from coal. How do you assess Trump’s campaign promise, especially in West Virginia, to bring back the coal?

I am convinced that we should adopt alternative energies. You know, in the last couple of weeks I’ve hosted a wind turbine company with a $ 200 million investment in West Virginia.

But at the same time, it is futile for us to think that today our nation can move forward without coal or without gas. There will be a day when we move away from fossil fuels. But I frankly don’t believe that’s the case now. And I don’t think it’s in the foreseeable decades. It is predictable decades from now. But that is certainly not predictable in the immediate future.

President Biden has joined the Paris climate agreement and will eventually want to restore Obama-era regulations on vehicles and power plants. On top of that, GM announced it would phase out all gasoline cars by 2035. Is there a way for West Virginia to support any part of the administration’s climate agenda?

The great part of West Virginia is that today the percentage of our income from the departure tax on coal and gas is the lowest it has been in the past 25 years, and yet the West Virginia is doing very well. Because we have diversified in so many different directions.

You know, tourism is exploding. High technology is exploding. A bit of manufacturing. Superior edition. Virgin Hyperloop is on its way to West Virginia. There’s a lot of really exciting things going on in West Virginia.