- BBC World News
While waiting to find out what direction the Republican Party takes in the future, the majority of positions remain loyal to President Donald Trump in his strategy of contesting the electoral result and the victory of Joe Biden.
Few party figures have acknowledged defeat and congratulated Democrat Biden as he waits to find out what happens to the litigation over the unsubstantiated fraud allegations of the president’s campaign.
“I have nothing to congratulate (Biden) on,” said Ron Johnson, Republican senator from Wisconsin, on Tuesday.
Only four of nearly 50 Republican senators have contradicted Trump, accepted the result and recognized Biden.
Among those who have, is Mitt Romney, a longtime critic of the president and the only Republican who supported the Senate impeachment Trump at the beginning of the year.
Also former President George W. Bush closed the electoral contest and congratulated the Democrat.
But the vast majority remain loyal to Trump, who in the last four years took control of the party and whose role in the future is yet to be defined.
US media report that some officials say privately that the president should abandon a legal battle for which there appears to be insufficient sustenance and accept defeat, as is tradition.
However, in public there is either silence or support for the tycoon’s strategy.
“With a few notable exceptions, the entire Republican Party is in a position of some intimidation from the president,” Biden said Tuesday, facing a transition with resistance from the White House for now.
This was made clear by the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, praised by Trump on Twitter after saying Tuesday his department is preparing “a smooth transition to a second Trump administration.”
They were surprising words from a secretary of state after an election.
And also Mitch McConnell, the Republican Majority Leader in the Senate, defends Trump’s right to dispute the results in court, saying that “you don’t have to act like this is extraordinary.”
“We will go through this period and swear in the winner (in January) as we do every four years,” he said as if there was no winner yet.
McConnell has been Trump’s great ally and facilitator of the Republican Party’s conservative agenda.
The risks of standing up to Trump
The senator from Kentucky has just revalidated his position, but there are still two races, both in Georgia, that will be defined on January 5 and that will determine which party will have the majority in the chamber, something that will have a clear impact on the Biden government .
The Republicans Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue They will play their position that day and they are clear, at least for the moment, that for this they must follow Trump’s strategy.
And it is that facing the president has its risks.
Knows it well Jeff Sessions, whom Trump appointed attorney general in 2016.
By virtue of his position, Sessions recused himself from any investigation into Russian interference in the campaign four years ago, in which the tycoon prevailed. In 2017, he resigned and from then on he was targeted by the president.
Trump then endorsed Sessions’ rival in the Republican primaries for the Alabama senator position that the conservative politician held for two decades.
“Trump will have a huge impact on our party going forward,” he said over the weekend on television. Romney.
The 2012 presidential candidate (lost to Barack Obama) and now a senator from Utah thus revealed how counterproductive it can still be to go against the president, who could continue to be the main figure of the party and even stand in the 2024 elections.
“The 900-pound gorilla”
In addition, Trump has the support of more than 71 million voters in the November 3 election, the second-highest figure in history. It is surpassed by Biden, who accumulates almost five million more votes than the Republican while waiting for the final count to close.
“I think the vast majority of the people who voted for Trump want to make sure his principles and his policies are followed, so he is by no means going to go away,” Romney said.
There are several alternatives and paths for the party to follow, all of them still premature and that may begin to be clarified in January, with the end of Trump’s term.
For now, Trumpism rules.
“In the Republican Party Trump is the 900-pound gorilla,” Romney said graphically using a figure in English that comes to mean someone who is too powerful for anyone to oppose him.
The US media these days recall how the Republican Party’s own positions were key for Richard Nixon resigned in 1974 because of the scandal Watergate.
And many see this also important to avoid a constitutional crisis in the coming weeks.
“Ultimately, it will depend on his fellow Republicans pressuring (Trump) to step aside. Otherwise, it can create a constitutional crisis,” he told her. Joshua Sandman, professor of political science at the University of New Haven expert on the US presidency, to the BBC Mundo journalist Gerardo Lissardy.
This Monday a group of 31 former Republican congressmen published a letter denouncing the accusations of fraud without proof and asking the president to accept the result.
Much more difficult is at the moment for the Republicans who still defend a seat and who are in front of “the 900-pound gorilla.”
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