Culture Wars/Current Controversies

Trump takes on the fringe?

As I’ve always said, Trump is a Nixon-Rockefeller moderate Republican at heart.

By Joel Mathis, The Week

He’s actively promoting vaccination. Will the GOP’s right-wing turn on him?

In the early days of his 2016 campaign, former President Donald Trump famously boasted of the hold he had over his followers. “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters,” he told a rally in Iowa. For most of the years since, that has seemed true: Trump insulted veterans, equivocated about white supremacists, flubbed the nation’s COVID response, and eventually incited an insurgency at the U.S. Capitol. He still retained the devotion of most Republicans. It was remarkable and disturbing at once.

It turns out Trump was wrong, though. He can alienate some of his most ardent followers, but not by committing murder.

Instead, Trump’s undoing might come about because he has inverted the Fifth Avenue scenario: He has urged his supporters to protect their health by getting vaccinated against COVID-19. The former president is trying to save the lives of the people who love him — and that has confused and enraged them.


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