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Donald Trump is behaving like a cult leader
Trump's obsession with personal "loyalty" to him (and only to him) ranks much higher than the Republican Party or conservative principles.
A key feature of religious cults is that you have a single figure at the top, who commands complete loyalty. Those who try to leave the cult are punished or harassed. The leader himself, of course, has no obligation to be loyal to anyone. A cult, then, is a perfect analogy to how Donald Trump views politics and the Republican Party.
Trump has never been a Republican. His primary loyalty was to himself and his own ego. Trump is a transactional politician, so he embraced conservative principles and the Republican Party to help him get elected. But for all of his his policy accomplishments - which were significant - Trump was never a true believer. That is why he has lurched to the Left, attacking entitlement reform, attacking efforts to pass anti-abortion legislation, and even attacking governors who resisted pressure to maintain harsh COVID-19 pandemic mitigation measures.
Trump's obsession with personal "loyalty" to him (and only to him) ranks much higher than the Republican Party or conservative principles. See below:
If and when Kim Reynolds of Iowa endorses Ron DeSanctimonious, who is absolutely dying in the polls both in Iowa and Nationwide, it will be the end of her political career in that MAGA would never support her again, just as MAGA will never support DeSanctimonious again. Two extremely disloyal people getting together is, however, a very beautiful thing to watch. They can now remain loyal to each other because nobody else wants them!!!
So there you have it. The policy agenda does not matter. Legislative or administrative accomplishments do not matter. The issues facing the voters do not matter. The stated policy agenda of their Democratic opponents do not matter. Governor Reynolds and Governor DeSantis dared to opposed Trump for an open seat in a Republican primary, so they must never have the support of "MAGA" again. Much better to let the Democrats win than to have someone who did not follow the cult leader's every commandment.
This is not new. This has always been who Donald Trump is. Remember back in 2016, which was a "Flight 93 election" that Republicans needed to win to save the country, Donald Trump refused to pledge not to run as an independent candidate, splitting the Republican vote and guaranteeing that "Crooked" Hillary Clinton would become the 45th President of these United States. If Trump did not get his way, he was willing to hand the White House to someone he said would ruin the country.
Barring a drastic shift in the political landscape (which is extremely unlikely) Donald Trump is going to be the Republican Party's candidate for President in 2024. While there is a principled conservative case to be made for voting for Trump, and I do not judge those who vote for him given the binary choice voters face, I will not vote for Trump again. Character matters, and Trump has proven he does not have the character required to trusted with the office of the President a second time.
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