Feb 23, 2021
Live on this weeks The Brief: Can the Republican Party be saved? And what about rural America?
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Rural America went even more deeply into Trumpian territory in 2020, while the Republican Party wages a civil war between the dominant Q-aligned Trump conspiracy crowd, and a seemingly shrinking cadre of rational-thinking conservatives.
This week we’ll explore both these topics on our YouTube show and podcast, The Brief.Joining us will be never-Trump Republican Sarah Longwell, founder of the The Bullwark, the Republican Accountability Project, and Republican Voters Against Trump, as we discuss whether her party can be saved. We’ll also have Matt Hildreth, the Executive Director of RuralOrganizing.org, a national "boldly progressive and proudly rural" organization based in Columbus, Ohio working locally and nationally to build a rural America that is empowered, thriving, and equitable.
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Georgia Gov. Kemp says hed absolutely back Trump as 2024 nominee
Georgia Gov. Brian KempBrian KempDemocrats must prepare now for a contested 2024 election Raid the Republican Party to save the party Trump says 2018 endorsement of Kemp 'hurt' Republicans MORE (R) said that he will “absolutely” support former President TrumpDonald TrumpSouth Carolina Senate adds firing squad as alternative execution method Ex-Trump aide Pierson won't run for Dallas-area House seat House Oversight panel reissues subpoena for Trump's accounting firm MORE if he became the Republican party’s presidential nominee, even after recent comments from Trump voicing regret over backing Kemp in 2018.
Pressed by Fox News' Neil Cavuto in an interview on Wednesday about whether he would support Trump if he became the party’s nominee in 2024, Kemp said: “Absolutely, I'm going to support the nominee.”
“As I said, again, I worked very hard for the president. I think his ideas... will be part of our party for a long time in the future,” Kemp said. “And Republicans, we need to have a big tent. I mean, there's a lot of great ideas out there.”
“We're not always going to get along, but I think the president deserves a lot of credit,” Kemp continued. “And he's not going away.”
Just earlier this week, Trump said he thought his decision to back Kemp ahead of the Republican gubernatorial primary runoff in 2018 was “an endorsement that hurt us.”
Trump claimed that Kemp, whom former Georgia Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle competed against in a GOP primary runoff election, was “in last place or just about in last place” at the time of the endorsement.
“I endorsed him, he ended up winning the election and he certainly was not very effective for the Republican Party, to put it nicely,” Trump said.
The statement by Trump is one of a series of jabs the former president has made at Kemp in the wake of the 2020 presidential election, in which traditionally red Georgia stunned the nation when it went for a Democrat for the first time since 1992.
Trump has starkly criticized Kemp and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) multiple times since the election after the two pushed back against unsubstantiated claims Trump made about widespread voter fraud cost him the state and his reelection.
In late November, Trump said he was “ashamed” that he endorsed Kemp years back. He also pushed for primary challengers for the governor in the weeks following the election and asked then-Rep. Doug CollinsDouglas (Doug) Allen CollinsThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Finger-pointing on Capitol riot; GOP balks at Biden relief plan Perdue rules out 2022 Senate bid against Warnock Loeffler leaves door open to 2022 rematch against Warnock MORE (R-Ga.) at a rally in December if he would like to run for the position. Trump has also called for Kemp to step down.
Later in December, Kemp brushed off calls from Trump to resign, as well as calls for him to face a primary, characterizing the attacks as distractions.
“As far as me getting primaried, I could care less about that right now,” Kemp said at the time. “The biggest thing we all need to do, regardless of what you think about what’s going on in Georgia, we’ve got to support David PerdueDavid PerduePlease, President Trump: Drop your quest for revenge and help the GOP The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Finger-pointing on Capitol riot; GOP balks at Biden relief plan Georgia's GOP-led Senate passes bill requiring ID for absentee voting MORE and Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerKelly Loeffler's WNBA team sold after players' criticism Please, President Trump: Drop your quest for revenge and help the GOP The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Finger-pointing on Capitol riot; GOP balks at Biden relief plan MORE.”
Then-Sens. David Perdue (R-Ga.) and Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) ended up losing their seats to Democrats Rev. Raphael WarnockRaphael WarnockTrump says 2018 endorsement of Kemp 'hurt' Republicans Kelly Loeffler's WNBA team sold after players' criticism The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Finger-pointing on Capitol riot; GOP balks at Biden relief plan MORE and Jon OssoffJon OssoffWray hints at federal response to SolarWinds hack Georgia's GOP-led Senate passes bill requiring ID for absentee voting Koch-backed group launches ads urging lawmakers to reject COVID-19 relief bill MORE, costing the Republican party their control in the upper chamber.Tags Raphael Warnock Kelly Loeffler David Perdue Doug Collins Donald Trump Jon Ossoff Brian Kemp