Ukraine: Trump will pay for praising Putin

Elaine Kamarck warns the former president’s rash words could cost him the 2024 Republican nomination

The World Today Published 1 April 2022 Updated 31 March 2022 2 minute READ

Elaine Kamarck

Senior Fellow in the Governance Studies programme, Brookings

Cracks began appearing in the Republican Party’s support of Donald Trump, the former president, before Russia invaded Ukraine. But with the position Trump has taken on the war those cracks may turn into a chasm.

Before the invasion, it was becoming clear that an anti-Trump faction was forming within the Republican Party. Initially it was led by Congresswoman Liz Cheney from Wyoming who broke publicly with Trump over the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the Capitol building in Washington in which his supporters attempted to disrupt the electoral college vote.

Then Trump’s own vice-president Mike Pence finally cut the cord with his former boss in early February saying: ‘President Trump is wrong. I had no right to overturn the election.’ Other Republican leaders have followed. Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader from Kentucky, hasn’t spoken to Trump since December 2020 – and it is reported that he doesn’t ever want to talk to him again.

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