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Trump owes his supporters answers to these 6 questions
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Trump owes his supporters answers to these 6 questions

With the election 10 months away, voters need to know how a second term will be different — and more effective — than the first before the former president locks up the Republican nomination.

Donald Trump’s supporters are elated over the results of the Iowa caucuses, understandably so. Their chosen one secured a 51% majority of the vote on Monday. Among my colleagues, the prevailing sentiment now is that MAGA is unbeatable.

Maybe. But I’d like to challenge my ideological allies to answer some questions about the path forward that portends anything but the dominance of MAGA or what it appears to represent.

If MAGA is really such a juggernaut, why can’t the movement even guarantee Trump will appoint a decent running mate?

On paper, those who despise the Republican Party establishment should be pleased with the results from Iowa. Whether you supported Trump, Ron DeSantis, or Vivek Ramaswamy, you voted against the establishment. Whether those candidates have a solid record of results against the establishment or would alter the status quo is a different story.

But in politics, perception is often reality. None of Trump’s voters went out in subzero temperatures and icy roads on Monday to vote for Trump because of Jared Kushner, Anthony Fauci, Steven Mnuchin, the CARES Act, “Operation Warp Speed,” or all of the bad budget bills Trump signed. The opposite is true. They perceive — wrongly or rightly — that Trump will fight the malevolent forces that those personnel picks and policies represent.

Thus we can say that 81% of Iowa Republican voters — at least in their minds — cast ballots aligned with our worldview and not that of Mitch McConnell. It might even be more than 81% because a good chunk of Nikki Haley’s voters were Democrats who registered that evening just to crash the other party’s caucus.

So the obvious question Trump and his supporters must answer is this: Eight years into MAGA’s supposed dominance, why do the party’s policies and leadership at almost every level still reflect the position of the 19% and not the 81%?

We might have heard a good answer to that question if we had a real debate and a real contest between Trump and DeSantis. We could have delved into why Trump kept endorsing milquetoast Republicans in down-ballot elections, backed the likes of McConnell, Paul Ryan, Kevin McCarthy, and Ronna McDaniel for leadership positions, picked globalist cabinet members, and undermined us on nearly every budget and must-pass bill – even before getting to COVID. Perhaps we could have gotten to the bottom of why the 19% (at most) still dominate the 81% despite Trump being the undisputed leader of the party — along with its media apparatus — for eight years.

Many of my colleagues in this industry shielded Trump from hard questions. They excused his disrespect for the voters just like they excused the bad positions he took during his presidency. So here we are. They broke it. Now they own it.

As such, anyone who is part of the 81% should demand that those who share our values and have Trump’s ear get answers to key questions that should have been raised on a public debate stage.

1) How will Congress change? The simple fact is we’ve gone backward when it comes to winning primaries against the GOP establishment since 2016. In down-ballot races for Senate, House, and governor, Nikki Haley’s worldview is the rule, not the exception.

Milquetoast Republicans continue to win, often with Trump’s support. Every globalist incumbent appears on track for a bigger win in their primaries than Trump managed in Iowa.

What is the plan, if any, for Trump to change his endorsement practices? What is his plan as president to use must-pass bills and demand changes even at the risk of a government shutdown? Trump already told CNN he would only oppose raising the debt ceiling as a candidate, not as a president. Good to know! So what will change?

2) How will Trump’s personnel change? Name the competent anti-establishment figures who will join the next administration. Trump’s downfall was due to nearly every Cabinet pick embodying the attributes and worldview rejected by his base, from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to Defense Secretary James Mattis all the way down. Trump surrounds himself with the likes of Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Laura Loomer — and no, Loomer isn’t getting into the Cabinet.

During his victory speech on Monday, Trump stood side by side with North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum and suggested he would serve in a potential second-term administration. That would likely mean Burgum would land in the Department of Energy. Does Trump not know that Burgum is a stereotypical World Economic Forum politician who pledged in his last State of the State address to make North Dakota “carbon neutral”?

Burgum would have run as a Democrat in another state, but knew he had to run as a Republican in North Dakota. He bought himself a governorship by pretending to be one of us. Now, he might run for a third term. He has gone out of his way to oppose conservatives — mainly Trump supporters — in his state’s legislature. He is the type of politician Trump should target for defeat. Yet Trump wants to elevate him.

People with Trump’s ear should work to ensure that all the establishment hacks endorsing him in droves (and “saying nice things about him”) are not rewarded with prominent positions once again.

3) How will Trump ensure a MAGA vice presidential nominee? Will Trump commit to not appointing Nikki Haley or someone similar to her as his running mate?

Lara Trump and senior adviser Jason Miller already floated the idea of Haley as a running mate, and neither of the candidates has ruled out the possibility. Will Trump’s supporters make it clear to him that people like Haley and South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem (who is indistinguishable from Haley on policy) are not acceptable running mates?

If MAGA is really such a juggernaut, why can’t the movement even guarantee Trump will appoint a decent running mate?

The reality is that this year’s pick will be the most consequential vice presidential candidate of all time. Given his age, there is a chance that Trump might not complete a full term. So his choice for vice president will be on the inside track as the new party leader.

To this day, America is paying for Ronald Reagan’s decision to tap George Bush as his running mate. Republicans must not make the same mistake again.

4) How can Trump ensure victory in November? The same public polling data that shows Trump’s commanding support in the primary spells doom for him in the general election. Most Americans still do not realize how corrupt our legal system has become, and they view a conviction as proof of guilt. It is nearly impossible that Trump won’t be convicted on at least one of the 91 criminal charges against him by a deep blue city jury.

The Iowa entrance poll showed 32% of Republican voters would not support Trump in the general election if he were a convicted felon. Although this is extremely unfair, what that means is that 10%-15% will follow through and not vote for him. And if those are the numbers among Republicans, you can imagine what independent voters will think! It would be a down-ballot wipeout not seen since Barry Goldwater’s crushing loss to Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964.

5) How can Trump build a winning campaign? With Biden raising a ton of cash and the Democrats’ near-impervious early voting and ballot-harvesting operations, any Republican would have trouble winning a national election this year. With Trump sidelined by his legal fights, forced to siphon off money for attorneys’ fees, and no ground game to speak of, how can he win?

Even the most uninspiring incumbent Republicans win their primaries based on name ID and party support. General elections are a different story. Putting out videos from Mar-a-Lago or holding rallies for staunch supporters will not cut it. Trump himself has already talked down the prospect of building a ballot-harvesting network, and there is no evidence he or his handpicked RNC chairwoman are starting one.

Republicans have continued to disappoint in turnout throughout regular and special elections over the past few years and have consistently underperformed the polling averages by as much as 10 points. There are probably several reasons for this, and they all need to be addressed, but clearly, the lack of a get-out-the-vote operation relative to Democrats is harming us. What is the plan?

6) How can Trump deliver a reckoning for COVID and the kill shots? To this day, Trump believes he did nothing wrong during COVID. He even touts Operation Warp Speed as one of his greatest accomplishments. We badly need a reckoning on this issue.

We also need the shots and the entire technology behind them banned, indemnity for vaccine makers removed, and a vaccine commission established to audit the existing shots on the market — a proposition Trump himself backed away from at the behest of Bill Gates.

While Trump is transactional, it’s hard to get through to someone who views the shots as his most enduring legacy. What is the plan of his closest supporters, many of whom claim to believe the vaccines are responsible for mass death, to hold Trump to account?

Too often, when conservatives have questions about both the policy and electoral viability of the establishment GOP candidate in a given Senate or gubernatorial race, we are immediately silenced. “Shut up, we have to beat the Democrats,” is the standard refrain.

But this is not October. This is January. We deserve answers, and those who most emphatically support Trump yet claim to share our objectives have an obligation to solicit them from him.

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Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz

Blaze Podcast Host

Daniel Horowitz is the host of “Conservative Review with Daniel Horowitz” and a senior editor for Blaze News.
@RMConservative →