Tuesday, 16 Aug 2022

Trump feeling fallout of Capitol attack hearings as allies abandon ship

Trump feeling fallout of Capitol attack hearings as allies abandon ship


Trump feeling fallout of Capitol attack hearings as allies abandon ship

Somewhere in Bedminster, New Jersey, on Thursday afternoon, it seems quite possible that an elderly man was sitting in front of a television howling with rage.

Donald Trump, who spends summers at his Bedminster golf club, is a TV guy, a ratings guy. So the widely televised hearings of the congressional committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US Capitol hit him where it hurts.

He is possibly aware that, while the hearings come too late to force his resignation and may or may not cause the justice department to press criminal charges, they seem to be inflicting greater political damage than anyone imagined.

Once again, all went smoothly and efficiently. There were no interruptions, objections, points of order or spoiling tactics. And that is said to have made Trump furious. He is especially critical of Kevin McCarthy, the minority leader in the House, for boycotting the committee instead of giving pro-Trump Republicans a voice on it.

McCarthy apparently gambled that this would allow Republicans to write off the hearings as illegitimate, partisan and an attempt to distract from more pressing issues such as inflation. But the presence of Cheney, Kinzinger and more than a dozen Republican witnesses has undermined that argument.

Moreover, McCarthy, who wants to be speaker of the House of Representatives, may have forgotten that Trump pays attention to TV, where the hearings are inescapable and will run into next month, prolonging the agony. Even if they are not penetrating the Trump base, they are penetrating Trump himself.

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