Donald Trump Is No Longer the Kingmaker He Thinks He Still Is

·2-min read
Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty
Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/Getty

Is Donald J. Trump losing his impenetrable grip on the Republican party? The New Abnormal co-host Molly Jong-Fast thinks so.

“What I’ve noticed is that Donald J. Trump is no longer the kingmaker he thinks he is,” she tells co-host Andy Levy on the latest episode, as evidenced by the GOP candidates who ended up losing after the former president endorsed them. (Or in Mo Brooks’ case, as seen by candidates who have their polling surge after Trump withdrew his endorsement.)

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“I am operating from the ‘Trumpism is alive and well and super destructive, but it doesn't need Trump to operate’ [standpoint],” she tells co-host Andy Levy, who agrees. “This is very clear with this second straw poll that Ron DeSantis won.”

Which brings the two to attempt to answer this question: Who is a scarier Republican candidate? Ron DeSantis or Donald Trump?

“DeSantis is much smarter. We all agree on that and that could make him more dangerous. But Trump has the cult behind him. There's no real cult of DeSantis. He doesn't sort of have that outsized personality that you need to be a cult leader,” says Andy. “It’s hard for me to decide who ultimately is worse. Who is more dangerous? Is it the smarter guy or is it the guy who, once he’s there, can say or do whatever the hell he wants and people blindly follow him right off the cliff?”

Later on the pod, Daily Beast politics editor Matt Fuller gives Molly the cold-hard truth on gun legislation that’s bubbling up in the House and Senate and who will—and who won’t—vote for it.

Republicans Are Getting Really ‘Sick’ of Trump’s ‘Bitching’

Plus! British columnist Ian Dunt explains why Brits will have “an absolute psychological breakdown” once Queen Elizabeth is gone. He also explains why Prime Minister Boris Johnson isn’t very secure in his position, and why he has “surrounded himself by some of the most stupid people” that Dunt has ever seen.

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