Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos
Remember what a fricking mess of contradictions Republican messaging was in the Georgia runoffs? Senate Republicans have apparently decided they want to rerun that losing strategy in 2022.
On Friday, yet another picture of a GOP seditionist and congressional campaign chief kissing Donald Trump's ring at Mar-a-Lago made the rounds on social media. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy may have beaten him to it, but Sen. Rick Scott of Florida, chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, was still brimming with enthusiasm.
Yet another installment in the GOP chronicles of, "Can't live with him, don't have the mettle to give him the heave-ho."
So while Trump and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell are still trading jabs over who doomed their Senate majority, Trump bootlickers are begging him to be a team player in 2022 rather than settle personal scores.
"Endorse as many incumbents that you can. Come out for the folks that you can come out for," Sen. Lindsey Graham told Trump Monday, according to Politico. "Play team ball to the extent it's possible."
Because appealing to the King of Reason is definitely a recipe for success. I mean, what could possibly be more team-y than sending a cease and desist letter to all the GOP campaign committees using your likeness to fundraise?
But Republicans—who are simply too dim to find new ways to appeal to voters themselves—are stuck clinging to a loser. Sure, that loser might try to take a pick axe to the reelection bids of GOP incumbent senators like Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John Thune of South Dakota, but he's got that irresistible charisma.
"He brought a bunch of new voters into the party that we want to keep," said Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, who's up for reelection next year and has been keeping Trump close.
Never mind the 80 million people Trump mobilized to come out and vote against him, which proved particularly devastating in former GOP strongholds such as Georgia and Arizona.
Meanwhile, Trump could easily doom Republicans again in 2022 by endorsing radicals for the GOP's open Senate seats, particularly in states like North Carolina, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. One retiring GOP senator already seems resigned to Trump's kiss of death.
"I don't have the ability to keep someone from winning the primary. That's something that Pennsylvania Republican voters are going to decide," Sen. Pat Toomey said.
In the meantime, Republicans are hoping against hope they won't also be forced to defend open seats in two more states: Iowa and Wisconsin. So far, things are really coming together nicely for their big midterm comeback.