Meanwhile, Axios tells us in the Terrible Sand Kingdom of Arizonastan…
Former President Donald Trump announced guest speakers today for his Saturday rally in Arizona, and most of them share a common trait: they led efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
I’m not a member of law enforcement, but it seems to me to be low-hanging fruit to have all the perps in one location. Just sayin’.
Why this matters: Trump, who remains the most powerful figure in the Republican Party, is making his false claims about the 2020 election the centerpiece of the GOP platform.
Between the lines: Trump has made clear to all who seek his endorsement that if they want his blessing, they need to make overturning the 2020 election as much of a priority as subverting future elections.
The details: The guest list for Trump’s Arizona rally is a who’s who of election deniers.
And then Axios goes on to list this rogues galley of sycophants and nut jobs:
- The headliner, Kari Lake, who Trump endorsed for Arizona’s gubernatorial race, told OAN she wouldn’t have certified Biden as the victor if she’d been governor.
- State Rep. Mark Finchem, Trump’s endorsed candidate to oversee Arizona’s elections as Secretary of State, not only denies the 2020 election result but attended “Stop the Steal” rallies in January.
- Arizona Reps. Paul Gosar, Andy Biggs and Debbie Lesko all voted on Jan. 6to object to the certification of Joe Biden’s victory.
- Kelli Ward, chair of Arizona’s Republican Party, pushed the false conspiracy theory that foreign powers manipulated Dominion voting machines to secure Biden’s election victory.
- Boris Epshteyn, who co-hosts Steve Bannon’s podcast, uses his platform to promote Trump’s claims about a stolen election.
- And Mike Lindell, the CEO of MyPillow, is arguably even more committed than Trump is to overturning the 2020 election. He says he has spent $25 million so far on his campaign to undermine and subvert the election.
- The one outlier in the speaking line-up is Alveda King, who is Martin Luther King Jr.’s niece. She is an outspoken Trump supporter, but unlike the other speakers, has not made it her mission to overturn the 2020 election.
The strategy is that Hair Füror is making his Big Lie an election plank of the GOP. It’s not enough to kiss his ass, 2022 candidates now must also take up the 2020 election as part of their campaigns to get his endorsement.
The bottom line: Trump’s goal, his advisers say, is to either make life so miserable for [those who deny the Big Lie] that they quit or end their careers by backing a successful primary challenge.
- Trump’s efforts are working. His few remaining opponents in the party are mostly either quitting out of exhaustion or choosing to keep their dissent to themselves.
And this is how cults of personality work; every time one standard-issue Republican quits, another Nazi gets its Luftwaffe wings.