National,  State

Post-Trump Era and the Republican Party

The 2020 election and 2021 runoff election, marking the post-Trump era, brought upon a surge of blue that took over the House and Senate. With the Democrats now holding control of Congress, this draws into question what exactly this means for the future of the Republican Party.

When analyzing the Republican Party in the post-Trump era, the clash between Republican representatives Liz Cheney, R-WY, and Matt Gaetz, R-FL, holds significance.

In the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump, Cheney was one of only 10 Republicans who voted in favor of impeachment. Cheney emphasized that she has let go of the Trump era by asserting: “There has never been a greater betrayal by a president of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution.” On the other hand, Gaetz persistently clings to what remains of the Trump-led Republican Party.

“We are in a battle for the soul of the Republican party, and I intend to win it. You can help me break a corrupt system. You can send a representative who represents you, and you can send Liz Cheney home — back home to Washington, D.C.,” stated Gaetz. 

This criticism of Cheney reflects the current state of the Republican Party in the post-Trump era. It is evident Gaetz firmly holds the belief that the party needs to be placed before everything else. However, Cheney believes otherwise.

Cheney defended her vote of conscience by stating, “This is not something that we can simply look past or pretend didn’t happen or try and move on.”

Although there is no evidence for the claim, Gaetz continues to profess that the election was stolen from the former president leaving the Republican Party at a standstill. As a result of not accepting the election results, there is a sense of tension that lurks.

In contrast to Gaetz, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy offered his perspective by asserting that a “united conservative movement will strengthen the bonds of our citizens and uphold the freedoms our country was founded on.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan commented, “The party would be much better off if they were to purge themselves of Donald Trump.”

With Trump out of office, the party no longer holds the presidency, a seat of significant power on the Hill. With the Democrats holding a majority of both the House and Senate, what does this mean for the future of the Republican Party?

The party faces the challenges of reevaluating its methods and strategies to avoid further potential division from within. By clinging on to the Trump era, the Republican Party may continue to face challenges in the future.

Hogan warns other members of the Republican Party that “We have to decide if we’re going to continue heading down the direction of Donald Trump or if we’re going to return to our roots.”

Featured image: Matt Gaetz at “An Address to Young Americans” event in 2020. Unmodified image by Gage Skidmore used under a Creative Commons license. (https://bit.ly/37MAhF3)

Check out other recent articles from the Florida Political Review here.        

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