Trump threatened to withhold support from former Georgia Republican Senators Loeffler and Perdue unless they attacked Georgia election officials.
Jane Mayer at The New Yorker reported:
The price of Trump’s coöperation, however, grew ever higher. According to a well-informed Republican insider, Trump made unconscionable demands behind the scenes. He threatened to withhold his support for Loeffler and Perdue and refused to campaign for them unless they joined his attacks on Georgia’s election officials and repeated his false claims of widespread election fraud. Days before the runoff, the insider said, the President forced Perdue to leave the campaign trail for a secret meeting at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s private club in Palm Beach, Florida. There, Trump coerced Perdue not just into taking his side on election fraud but also into supporting an increase in the size of pandemic-relief checks to two thousand dollars—a figure that McConnell and Senate Republicans opposed.
If Perdue refused, Trump made clear, he might withdraw his support. At the time, a spokesman for Perdue’s campaign denied that Trump had pressured Perdue. But, soon after the Mar-a-Lago meeting, both Perdue and Loeffler began echoing Trump’s call for larger relief checks, placing themselves and McConnell in an embarrassing political bind.
Donald Trump couldn’t get the Georgia Senators to back his election fraud claims on their merits so he threatened them into supporting his nonsense conspiracy that eventually led to the attack on the Capitol.
The Republican Party lost control of the Senate because they allowed themselves to be bullied by a guy who just lost the state where they needed to win to keep their majority. It is a position that defies common sense until one understands that Republicans bought the Trump lie.
The biggest lie in a presidency full of lies was that Donald Trump had some sort of magical political power that he could bequeath to whoever stood behind him and did his bidding. Trump was nothing more than a thug and an opportunist who tried to use the Georgia Senate runoff elections to stay in power.
In the end, both Trump and the Republican Party got exactly what they deserved.
For more discussion about this story join our Rachel Maddow and MSNBC group.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association