Today's election in Georgia may put the dagger in the myth that Donald Trump is a "winner." As Georgia voters head to the polls in a run-off, they will decide whether to return Raphael Warnock to the Senate or to go with football star Herschel Walker.
Walker, handpicked by former President Trump, has turned out to have been even worse a candidate than everyone in the GOP feared. And once again, thanks to Trump inspired and/or recruited candidate, the Republican Party is about to lose another winnable Senate seat. A solidly conservative candidate, not spouting Trump's election denial nonsense, could have easily won in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Georgia. Democrats did return the favor in Wisconsin, nominating for the Senate the only Democrat in the state, Mandela Barnes who couldn't defeat the highly unpopular Ron Johnson.
Trump said that with him the Republican Party would grow tired of "winning." But since Trump essentially drew to an inside straight in 2016, he's done nothing but cause the Republican Party elections. Trump's brand is losing.
The fact Trump is a loser has given his erstwhile supporters an excuse to take an off-ramp from the ex-President. Those of us Never Trumpers should not allow those Trump supporters to escape without consequences. I don't blame Trump for what he did to the Republican Party as much as I blame his enablers. Those Trump supporters decided to throw away their conservative values to follow a failed businessman, reality show star who long had supported liberal Democrats such as Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton. Even when it was clear that Trump was misogynist, racist, even anti-Semitic, they gave Trump a pass. If that wasn't enough, as President and since, Trump openly expressed hostility to American democratic values and recently said the Constitution should be suspended to reinstall him as President. None of those things though have stopped Trumpers from supporting the ex-President. But losing...that's too great of a sin.
The irony is that, although we Never Trumpers are often marginalized as a tiny segment of the GOP electorate, we have been the difference maker in numerous races. When one analyzes the swing states Trump lost in 2020, such as Arizona, Georgia and Wisconsin, it is clear that Biden won those states, and the election, because of Republican crossover vote. In 2022, it happened again when in state after state Trump endorsed candidates who refused to accept the legitimacy of the 2020 election lost.
It appears that we may be witnessing the end of Trump as a political darling within the Republican Party. But that's not enough. We need to strike a stake through the heart of Trumpism. Any elected official who continued to support Trump despite knowing his lack of character and his opposition to American democratic values, should not earn the support of Never Trumpers. Ever.