Marjorie Taylor Greene: Trump called me to express his support

Ah, there’s the keen political instinct that turned Arizona and Georgia blue last year.

Click here to read her full thread, which goes on in predictable Facebook-screed ways. There’s no better time for an ex-president to go all-in on an acolyte than when she’s in the news for mumbling about a secret Jewish space laser.

Trump’s statement of support comes less than 24 hours after the Republican Jewish Coalition issued a statement asking members of the party, in so many words, “What are you doing standing by this nut?”

She repeatedly used offensive language in long online video diatribes, promoted bizarre political conspiracy theories, and refused to admit a mistake after posing for photos with a long-time white supremacist leader. It is unfortunate that she prevailed in her election despite this terrible record.

The RJC has never supported or endorsed Marjorie Taylor Greene. We are offended and appalled by her comments and her actions. We opposed her as a candidate and we continue to oppose her now. She is far outside the mainstream of the Republican Party, and the RJC is working closely with the House Republican leadership regarding next steps in this matter.

Kevin McCarthy’s office announced yesterday that he’ll meet with Greene next week to discuss her “Pelosi should be executed for treason and school shootings are false flags” problem. Thanks to Trump’s phone call today, he’s really in a jam now. If he sanctions Greene by stripping her of her committee assignments, he’s on the wrong side of a Trump-backed House member. If he doesn’t take action, Democrats will shred him for being Trump’s poodle.

Between Trump showing solidarity with Greene and Matt Gaetz ignoring warnings not to attack Liz Cheney, it’s officially “make McCarthy look like a chump” week in the GOP.

The most perverse thing about the party establishment scrambling to support Trump again, just three weeks after the attack on the Capitol, is that he couldn’t be clearer that he doesn’t care about the party. If he did, he wouldn’t be making the situation with Greene more difficult than it needs to be. If he did, he wouldn’t have done stuff like this to wreck Kelly Loeffler’s and David Perdue’s chances knowing that GOP control of the Senate depended on them winning.

“It was a hostage situation every day,” said one Republican strategist familiar with the campaigns who only agreed to speak on the condition of anonymity…

“Every week we had some new sort of demand,” said another strategist involved with the campaigns. “Calling for the hand recount. The signature match. A special session. $2,000 [coronavirus relief] checks. Objecting to the electors.”

“It was, ‘If you do not do this, the president will actively work against you and you will lose,'” he recalled…

“Our Republican candidates have been in this corner for a couple of years, having to run 100% unrelenting, un-independently mindedly supporting Trump,” he said. “‘Whatever [Trump] says, that’s my new position. If it contradicts something I said before, that’s fine. It’s my new position.'”

It’s hard to believe Trump would have gone so far as to work *against* two Republicans whose races would determine whether Democrats could advance Biden’s agenda or not but this isn’t the first time that claim has been made. On January 10, Politico reported the same thing — this time with Trump himself issuing the threat. “He told Kelly Loeffler before he landed in Georgia for a final rally on Monday that if she didn’t back the Electoral College challenges, he would ‘do a number on her’ from the stage, according to a source familiar with the events.” Imagine the scene if she had defied him, Trump taking the stage at an election-eve rally held to get out the vote for her and Perdue and seizing the opportunity to attack her instead.

He doesn’t care about the party or any election but his own. Given a choice between embracing a crank like Greene who’s hyperloyal to him and distancing himself from her to help the GOP’s image with swing voters, he’ll go for loyalty every time. And 95 percent of the Republicans in Congress will lick his boots anyway.

Here’s their reward, a new poll out of the swing state of Georgia showing Trump with a lower approval rating than even Brian Kemp and Brad Raffensperger:

On the cusp of a tough reelection battle, Kemp’s approval rating stands at just 42% — and his disapproval is at 51%. More than one-third of Republicans — 36% — disapprove of his performance. That’s more than quadrupled from the 8% of Republicans who held a dim view of Kemp in the AJC’s January 2020 poll.

Trump’s standing is even worse. A solid majority of Georgians disapprove of the former president in the weeks since he left office, with 57% giving him an unfavorable rating, compared with just 40% who approved of his performance in the White House…

In other signs of troubling news for local Republicans, about half of Georgians have a positive view of the Democratic Party — while only one-third have a favorable impression of the GOP.

Raffensperger’s approval stands at 47 percent, with much higher support from Democrats than from Republicans. The wrinkle with Trump’s 40 percent rating is that it’s hyperpolarized as usual between the parties, with 84 percent of GOPers rating him approvingly. (That’s down from 95 percent in September, it’s worth noting.) As others have noted, that hyperpolarization makes it impossible for Republicans to solve their Trump problem. If he got less popular with the right, they could dump him; if he got more popular with everyone else, they could embrace him without difficulty. As it is, they’re stuck trying to feel their way to a position on him that somehow doesn’t alienate Republican voters in the primary or swing voters in the general election.

How do you suppose Trump hugging Greene will play in Georgia, which is now sufficiently purple to have just voted for Joe Biden, Raphael Warnock, and Jon Ossoff, and seems poised to make Stacey Abrams governor in 2022?

I’ll leave you with this, another dramatic reminder of how the party is dividing between a very large pro-Trump faction and a smaller but noteworthy anti-Trump one: “Former President George W. Bush is making it clear that he supports Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the No. 3 Republican in the House, who voted to impeach then-President Donald Trump. Bush’s chief of staff, Freddy Ford, told CNN on Friday that Bush plans to praise Liz Cheney during a Saturday call with his former vice president, her father, Dick Cheney.”