According to a report from the Religion News Service, the launch of Donald Trump's new National Faith Advisory Board got off to a rocky on Thursday after he complained to religious leaders about Jewish voters not appreciating what he did for them during his four years in office.
According to the report, the official launch on the board took place this week with Trump and longtime Trump advisor Paula White speaking to members on a conference call --with the suggestion the one-term president may make another run in 2024 with the hope he can round up enough people of faith to support him.
According to the report from Jack Jenkins, "Trump referenced hypothetical future scenarios 'if we're able to get back in,' while repeating the widely discredited claim the 2020 election was 'stolen' from him. In discussing the Catholic vote, he acknowledged he had lost ground with the bloc in his four years in office."
"I'm a little bit surprised that we didn't do better with the Catholic vote," Trump told those listening in. "I think now they would give us a vote. I think we got about 50% of the vote. And yet, we did a lot for the Catholic vote. So we'll have to talk to them. We're gonna have to meet with the Catholics."
Jenkins notes that Trump was hit hard by Catholic defections in the hard-hit Rust Belt states, pointing out, "Trump's margin dropped from 64% to 57% between 2016 and 2020, whereas Biden won 42% — an 11% improvement over Clinton in 2016."
The former president was less pleased with Jewish voters, complaining that "Israel has never had a better friend."
"The former president expressed frustration with the lack of support from Jewish voters, despite his administration's support of Israel," Jenkins wrote, quoting Trump declaring, "Look what I did with the embassy in Jerusalem and what I did with so many other things … Israel has never had a better friend, and yet I got 25% of the vote. I think they have to get together. There has to be a little bit more unity with the religious groups all represented on this call."
Former President Donald Trump tried so hard to emulate Russian President Vladimir Putin while in office.
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“He saw Putin as the kind of epitome of the badass populist, frankly, you know, the kind of person that he wanted to be: super-rich, super powerful, no checks and balances, and essentially being able to stay in power forever,” Fiona Hill tells Molly Jong-Fast on this bonus episode of The New Abnormal.
But according to the former U.S. national security council official specializing in Russian and U.S. relations, the relationship was and is one-sided.
Senate Republicans, with a few exceptions, are hoping that former President Trump does not announce his intention to run again for president.
These GOP senators definitely don’t want to see Trump announce a bid before the 2022 midterm elections, fearing that could sink their hopes of winning back the Senate.
More broadly, they’re generally reluctant to see him on the ballot in 2024 at all because of his track record with independent and swing voters.
Several Republican senators, who requested anonymity to discuss Trump frankly, said they don’t want to see Trump return as the party’s standard bearer.
“I think we’re better off when he’s not part of any story,” said a Republican senator, who said his view is widely shared in the GOP conference.
“He’s a clinical narcissist. He threw away the election in the debate with Biden and he threw away the Senate out of spite,” the lawmaker added, referring to Trump’s first against Biden, which many Republican senators viewed as a disaster, and his influence on Republican voter turnout in the Georgia special election.
One thing is crystal clear: Most GOP senators think Trump announcing a bid before the midterms would hurt them.
“The 2022 election ought to be about the Biden administration and its rolling disasters so anything that would detract from the public being focused on what Democratic governance is doing to this country would be ill-advised,” said Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), a Trump ally, when asked about the possibility Trump could announce his campaign in the next year.
Johnson, a top Democratic target next year, hasn’t decided whether to run for reelection, but expects Democrats to make the Wisconsin Senate race all about Trump.
“That’s what they always want to do. They want to distract and most of the mainstream media will be trying to do that as well. We need to focus — not only Republicans but the country needs to focus on what a disaster the Biden administration has been,” he said.