November 12, 2022

On Friday, we featured a reader letter on the future of the Republican Party as it relates to President Trump and the way he’s handling –- or not handling –- this post-election moment. She felt that it’s time for Trump to step back.

Trump has been reacting wildly on social media (Truth Social now instead of Twitter) in the very style that at times has put off even some of his most ardent supporters, and newly incomprehensible as well. He’s coming off as vengeful and bitter, and that’s not a good look if he’s getting ready to announce another run for President.

Certainly the pressure was on him to provide the coattails for the GOP, especially for certain candidates he’d endorsed. And the outcome is turning out to be disappointing and uneven, given the expectations many of us had. Losing the House would have been a disaster in many ways, but at this writing, late Friday, we’re almost sure of taking it. Still, another disappointment has hit, as it was reported Friday that Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly, a reliable Biden rubber-stamper, will keep his seat, with a win over GOP candidate Blake Masters in Arizona.

Note:  In speaking of this apparent win, I’m setting aside for the moment the serious vote-counting issues in Arizona and Nevada, which are addressed elsewhere in the newsletter. On Friday, we also asked questions about the Maricopa County recorder’s office, which it seems has found a loophole in Arizona law to continue taking money from an organization funded by Mark Zuckerberg. There’s no reason to trust the election in Arizona when it’s this partisan and even run by none other than gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs, Kari Lake’s GOP opponent!

But, aside from that, it does appear that there was quite a red wave, much more, I'm sorry to say, than is apparent in the appropriation of actual seats. Aaron Kliegman reported for JUST THE NEWS that according to Cook Political Report, Republican actually won 52.3 percent of the total ballots cast, at least as of late November 10, with the Democrats coming in considerably lower at just 46.2 percent. We checked for an update early November 12, and Republicans were still in the lead, though their margin was a little narrower, 51.8 percent.

This report is updated regularly, so you can check here to see how we’re doing.

Kliegman wrote: “It’s unclear at this point what explains the glaring incongruity between the GOP’s underwhelming performance in terms of winning seats on the one hand and its significant lead in the popular vote on the other.” That’s something to look at, certainly. But those overall percentages are at least something to celebrate --- and they’re no doubt very concerning to Democrats looking ahead to the next election.  Marc Elias must be lying awake nights coming up with more ideas for putting a thumb on the scale in 2024.

Certain races, however, particularly the Senate race in Pennsylvania where Trump-backed Dr. Mehmet Oz lost to cognitively-impaired far-leftist schlub John Fetterman, so irked President Trump that he took to his own social media platform, Truth Social, to say some extremely ill-advised things. The worst of all was his totally nonsensical jab at Virginia GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin, which seems as though it might have been posted while Trump was under heavy medication. (One almost hopes we could find out that it was.) In a rant saying Youngkin wouldn’t have been able to win the governor’s race without him, he referred to the name Youngkin –- “Young Kin” –- as “sounding Chinese.”

This comment, seemingly from the planet Saturn, came on the heels of Virginia Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears’ remark that with these midterm election results, Trump should leave GOP politics. “A true leader understands when they have become a liability,” she told FOX NEWS on Thursday. “A true leader understands that it’s time to step off the stage, and the voters have given us that very clear message.”
Yes, that comment was surely upsetting fro Trump to hear.  But he reacted early Friday morning by taking that swipe at Youngkin, perhaps unwittingly proving Sears’ point.

Youngkin stayed above this. “Listen, you all know me,” he told reporters. “I do not call people names. I really work hard to bring people together...that’s not the way I roll and not the way I behave.”

The NEW YORK POST spoke to sources who had been around Trump as returns came in, and they didn’t paint a pretty picture. Trump had focused his ire on the increasingly popular GOP Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis when DeSantis had said nothing to provoke him, violating President Reagan’s “11th Commandment” about not speaking ill of others in the party. Trump succeeded only in making Republicans long for someone like Ronald Reagan at the helm of our party instead of what we have. And that makes the more measured DeSantis look even better.

Given what Trump has been put through by his political enemies ever since he first announced he was running for President, it’s amazing he came through it in one piece. He is still standing after attempts on every front to destroy him, and we love him for that. But he needs to demonstrate for us that the saying, “What does not kill us makes us stronger,” is true in his case. (Research has shown that this is not generally true.) Trump needs to be stronger, not flailing. Wiser, not more emotional. More strategic, not more impulsive. If he has been weakened, if he is now more of a political liability, he’ll need to understand that it’s time to embark on another phase of life, outside of politics, for the good of the country he loves.

Given all that the left have done to try to take Trump out, how ironic would it be if they were able to just stand back now and let him do it to himself?

On the other hand, when Dan Bongino addressed this issue during his Friday podcast, he said he’s not worried that a primary contest between Trump and DeSantis will weaken the party. Judging from history, he believes this would strengthen it, no matter how much aggravation and airing of dirty laundry is involved. It’s good, he said, “because by the time you get to the general, all the dirty laundry’s been aired.” He also reminded us how hard Trump campaigned for Ron DeSantis in his first, very close election, saying that’s probably what placed him in the governor’s chair. He credited Trump for Florida’s move to “red.”

But Trump was certainly wrong, Bongino (who lives in Florida) said, to call DeSantis an “average” governor, when he is an excellent governor. “He took what Trump started,” he said, “and ran with it in the state of Florida.”

“The best approach right now is to slow down,” he cautioned. It should be about the party right now, and the races currently at stake. “There’s no rush,” he said; “there’ll be more than enough time to attack each other [on issues].’ He’s confident they’re “not gonna hurt each other” but strongly warns they must NOT make it personal, because voters will be deeply alienated by that. I would say this warning might have come too late for Trump, though, as we’re already seeing him alienate them.

What do you think? Here’s the podcast; his remarks on Trump/DeSantis start about 43 minutes in…

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Comments 11-20 of 403

  • Brian Tacoma

    11/15/2022 03:00 PM

    We as a party must wash our hands of Trump. No democrat will ever vote for him. A vast number of independents and a fair amount of republicans won't either. His words are caustic to Americans and even fellow republicans. He's become an embarrassment and we may well see more come out over the next two years. We have good alternatives. While I hate to see DeSantis give up Florida to run he'd make a great president. And Nikki Haley! What democrat cannot love her? A minority woman of immigrant parents who was both governor and an ambassador. If they'd announce they're running as a team it would be hard to beat.

  • Carol J Mathews

    11/15/2022 01:11 PM

    I am so sorry but I do agree with the person who wrote the note. Trump is loosing from the inside out. I agree with you Governor about having a good doctor reguardless of his personality or a good plumber, etc. and I too would choose competance over sweetness but if you have a choice of two with both being the best, but one has a good personality and the other one is boisterous and has childess temperment, then choose the Best with the better personality. He is killing himself, self-distruction. He is or was what we needed but the whining Hillary and Stacy griping is too much.

  • Mi Brooks

    11/15/2022 11:34 AM

    People are tired of being lied to. The republican party did not win the support and confidence of people, Trump did. The whole 2 party system needs to be gutted and the voting fraud stopped

  • Robin Lightner

    11/15/2022 08:49 AM

    Trump's rantings about Desantis are shooting himself in the foot. He has already lost several of my conservativ friends that would have supported him. I'm on my way out too. Robin

  • Jeanne Seyb

    11/15/2022 08:02 AM

    I have sent many messages over the last few years. Yes I did vote for Trump and yes I think he did some great things for our country during his Presidency. But it was a nail bitter every time he got spoke his was off the cuff, angry and childish. It was embarrassing to say the least. I agree a good leader knows when to walk away. I would like to see that kind of character in him now. He would definitely be remembered for it if he would step back. We can’t win with him.

  • Leslie Smith-Lee

    11/15/2022 02:21 AM

    I've commented previously about my concerns re: Trump. His competitive nature is a double edged sword..on one hand, he could accomplish great things (eg. Making the Abraham Accords a reality); On the other hand, he's got foot-in-mouth disease... only he does not recognize the limitations of his own coping skills when his expectations (which are sometimes not well thought through) are not fulfilled. E.g. Trump took one of the most loyal and patient members of his closest administrative members and vilified him publicly. Who? Mike Pence. He was a loyal, spirit -filled and thus, admirable servant to President Trump. I never heard a word of criticism from Pence or motivation to "out" any of Trump's weaknesses in judgement publicly. I can't imagine anyone having his level of ongoing patience in the midst of all the "fireworks" that were associated with that administration. In the end, this faithful man received a condemnation label of "coward" from our President on Jan 6. In the epistle of James 3, he states in vs. 2, that we "all stumble in many ways. If anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to bridle the whole body as well." The tongue can set on fire, the course of one's life. That whole chapter is very convicting. A leader who can speak truth with care and grace is under good self control. In these times, it is paramount that our party has a strong leader who understands truth AND is mindful about the great power and effectiveness that words spoken with truth, wisdom and a reasoned constraint have. Our highest level leader should be really skilled in this.

  • Jack Wyss

    11/14/2022 09:37 PM

    You are certainly a Fine Christian Gentleman and also a wonderful informer/entertainer.
    Thank You!
    He was an excellent president in the face of withering lies and criticism.
    He was The Man of The Hour!
    Nevertheless his time has come and gone and his current course of action definitely disqualifies him from leadership.
    We all need to join in prayers and reflect the Gifts of The Spirit as related in Ephesians 5:22
    GOD Bless
    Jack Wyss

  • Kaye Burke

    11/14/2022 09:29 PM

    Hello Governor Huckabee,
    I am concerned with President Trumps' rhetoric. If ever there needs to be a change in how candidates speak about each other is now. He has called Ron DeSantis a horrible name and also Nancy Pelosi. This name calling will not get anywhere and only make things much worse. Plus the I, me and what I did is in the past and we have to move forward. I fear that the baggage that he carries from himself and others who dislike him will not fare well. He has been crucified and he is not Jesus. They hated Jesus as well and feared him. I would rather see someone else as the candidate. I like what President Trump did, just the name calling, the persecution, will continue.
    Thanks for listening and for ALL you do.
    Kaye (Congrats on Sarah's win}

  • James Wheless

    11/14/2022 09:12 PM

    Mr. Trump needs to go back to making money and TV shows, but get out of politics.

  • Dave Krusemark

    11/14/2022 05:30 PM

    Governor Huckabee (I),
    Although voting for Pres. Trump twice (cringing somewhat the 2nd time), I sincerely hope he steps aside and does not run again for the reasons you stated. The enthusiasm for and momentum gained by Gov. DeSantis in the midterms is surely warranted. However, I am disappointed that Mike Pompeo is not receiving more attention and support. I believe he offers a greater grasp of and experience in national and international issues having served in Congress, as CIA director, and as Secretary of State. His military understanding and academy education are also a plus that has been sorely lacking in recent presidents. I also believe Mike Pompeo's manner and communication style are more persuasive and less abrasive in conveying the "America First" message and policies to those not already on board. I would be very interested in your take on this opinion. Thank you, Dave Krusemark