When Donald Trump won the 2016 election, he shocked the political world. As a non-establishment choice on the ticket, right-leaning voters were won over by the very real possibility of something promised by candidate after candidate: change. And yet, heading into 2020, the GOP was riven with an internecine division that saw the sitting president facing attacks from within the Republican Party. The indictment of the former president has changed all this. It seems that no Republican – even those who hope to win the 2024 nomination – will break ranks on an issue that has galvanized the party base in a manner that was previously unthinkable.
Indictment Succeeds Where Messaging Fails
In A Pillar of Iron, Taylor Caldwell wrote, “A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself.”
Although it would be hugely unfair to describe those who disagreed with Trump’s vision as “traitors,” the sly whispers in the halls of government and even the open proclamations on the Sunday show circuit had created a division that arguably did more damage to the 45th president’s 2020 electoral hopes than any attack the Democratic Party itself could inflict.
But with Alvin Bragg’s indictment of the man who hopes to reclaim the White House, the party now has a unified front that has overnight become the most dominant message.
As vice president under Trump, Mike Pence believes he has the political chops to take on his former boss. He has broken publicly with Trump on a number of issues and has been critical of him in a series of high-profile interviews. But when news broke of the indictment, Pence unreservedly condemned the actions of the Manhattan DA.
“I think the unprecedented indictment of a former president of the United States on a campaign finance issue is an outrage,” Pence said. Charging Trump with what amounts to a process crime is a “disservice to the country,” he declared and warned that the indictment would divide the nation. “I think the American people will look at this and see it as one more example of the criminalization of politics in this country,” he concluded.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis – thought to be Trump’s leading opponent for the GOP nomination should he finally announce – appeared equally disgusted with what he called a political abuse of power. Immediately after the news dropped, DeSantis took to Twitter to support the former president. He wrote:
“The weaponization of the legal system to advance a political agenda turns the rule of law on its head. It is un-American.
The Soros-backed Manhattan District Attorney has consistently bent the law to downgrade felonies and to excuse criminal misconduct. Yet, now he is stretching the law to target a political opponent.
Florida will not assist in an extradition request given the questionable circumstances at issue with this Soros-backed Manhattan prosecutor and his political agenda.”
The Republican Rally
Joining the chorus of condemnation were House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (D-CA), Sen. Rand Paul (KY), Rep. James Comer (KY), Rep. Thomas Massie (KY), and a whole host of other party notables. In fact, only two high-profile GOPers have failed to weigh in on the matter: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) and Sen. Joh Thune (SD) – neither politico has made statements as of yet.
Few issues have ever brought the Republican Party together in presenting a united front. With Alvin Bragg’s indictment of Donald Trump, the GOP has coalesced in a way that seemed almost unthinkable in the last few years of bitter division. Add to the pot rising poll numbers for the former president, and what we see is a party that appears ready to greet the public with one voice. The Manhattan DA might have won a political battle by securing an imminent arrest, but it may have cost Democrats a great deal more.
All opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Liberty Nation.
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