Former President Donald Trump’s tight grip on the Republican Party is slipping every day amid congressional hearings in the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol, Republican adviser and pollster Frank Luntz said.
The House Selection Committee spent a year investigating the riot that saw hundreds of Trump supporters attack the Capitol to disrupt the formal confirmation of President Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory for the 2020 presidential election.
This month, in a series of televised hearings, the committee tried to point to efforts by Trump and his allies to thwart the election results, based on unsubstantiated allegations of widespread voter fraud, as a key factor leading to the riots. So far, they’ve made several potentially damaging allegations against the ex-president that may alienate some Republicans, Luntz said.
Luntz, reported in Notes by The guard On Friday, GOP voters who have long supported Trump said they were sidestepping past the former president amid hearings.
“I can see that people aren’t drinking the Kool-Aid anymore. I see people moving away from Trump for the first time,” he said.
The midterm elections, scheduled for early November, have been the biggest test of Trump’s post-presidency influence as he seeks to maintain his popularity within the party and potentially prepare for another presidential bid in 2024. Luntz pointed to the importance of Trump’s endorsements in GOP primaries, but hinted that his power could still wane.
“His support ranks far above anyone else in the Republican Party, but he no longer controls the Republican Party. He’s the loudest voice, he has the biggest impact, but he’s losing control every day,” he said.
Trump has exerted his influence by backing a number of candidates who have served as loyal allies — particularly in light of the 2020 election results. A candidate’s willingness to support his voter fraud allegations has appeared to be a key condition for support of the former President exposed.
So far, many of his favorite candidates have won their primaries, while some of his fiercest GOP opponents have opted not to run for re-election.
Luntz’s comments come after lawmakers made fresh claims about Trump’s alleged efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
During a committee hearing on Thursday, lawmakers revealed that several Republican congressmen are seeking preemptive pardons from Trump for their support of voter fraud claims.
Meanwhile, Tuesday’s committee hearing saw testimony from Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers, who spoke about how Trump had allegedly asked them to help with efforts to overturn the election results. At earlier hearings, Rep. Liz Cheney, a Wyoming Republican, revealed that Trump allegedly endorsed the “Hang Mike Pence” chants chanted by rioters during last year’s attack.
A Fox News poll released earlier this month found that Trump’s popularity at the hearings has taken its toll. It turned out that 55 percent of voters had a negative opinion and only 45 percent had a positive opinion of the former president.
news week has reached out to Trump’s office for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/trump-losing-control-gop-every-day-amid-jan-6-hearings-frank-luntz-1719190 Trump ‘losing control’ of GOP ‘every day’ amid Jan 6 hearings: Frank Luntz