When Pennsylvania Rep. Ryan Costello announced on Sunday he wanted to join more than 40 other Republicans in Congress not seek re-election in November, he left no doubt about the cause: the Trump president’s behavior made it impossible to talk about anything else.
If he had to work, Costello said in an interview, he would be inundated with questions about Stephanie Clifford, a pornographic film actress known as Stormy Daniels, who said she had an affair with Mr. Trump and threatened to keep quiet about it,
“If this week had a town hall, the issue would be a problem,” said Mr. Costello. “Do you believe in him or do you believe in him? Why do not you believe him?
While Republicans are preparing for months to punish elections in November, they are increasingly worried that their losses could be even worse than feared as the medium-term campaign seems destined to turn more into the person’s behavior in the White House than in any other decade.
As much as the management of immigration guns, expanded tax reform and other issues, mobilizing voters about the lion and the right, allegations of Trump’s sex and unsustainable style could end up alienating the important blocks of suburban voters and a politically moderate woman who may be attracted to some Republican politics, but finding the presumed sexual escapades of the president is reprehensible.
Surveys and all recent elections have shown that Mr. Trump has encouraged liberal and moderate voters, especially women and those with higher education, to speak out against his party. But, at the same time, personal devotion to the president is increasingly becoming the most important litmus test for Republicans.
This growing chasm has created a dilemma for Republicans, especially in liberal and oscillating states.
If they remain loyal to Mr. Trump, they run the risk of angering many at the center of politics during general elections, probably ending their campaigns. But if they reject the president, they run the risk of oppressing their Republican voters and seeing their group of volunteers evaporate during the night.
“This is a political trap 22,” said J. Tucker Martin, a strategist in Virginia. “Candidates can not win without their base, but what is required to provide a pro-Trump base in 2018 will make Republican candidates in many states unacceptable to a large electoral number.”
And perhaps most unsettling for Republicans, the gubernatorial candidate Mr. Martin in November of last year, Ed Gillespie tried to avoid any ignition or Trump coverage, and he was still defeated.
At this point, many in the party seem more consumed by his appointment than Stalin for the general election. And they’re dealing with uncomfortable thin topics, such as Ms. Clifford’s statement, so as not to cut voters in the primaries.
In the two states where Republicans are most at risk of losing seats in the Senate, the main candidates of the party joined Trump still trying to preempt a challenge to their rights in the primary. Senator Dean Heller of Nevada and a representative Martha Mc of Sally Arizona, candidate nominated on the candidate list, Mr. Trump praised the way democratic authors could use against them in the fall.
Such short-term calculations constitute political negligence, say the Democrats.
“Trump is much more than the proverbial elephant in the room – it is the elephant in the room with the bad political breath, BO and a dirty mouth”, – said Al Smith, a veteran Democratic consultant who stated that the last time the president The conduct was largely in the intervals between congresses, which was the election after Watergate in 1974.
And the Democrats believe that Mr. Trump is so full of political conversation that he makes his obligations pale in comparison.
“I do not see headlines with:” The porn star claims Nancy Pelosi, “said Cedric Richmond’s representative, Louisiana Democrat, when asked about the polarizing house leader of his party.
Just as gun control puts a lot of Republican candidates on the defensive after the demonstrations carried out by the students, on Saturday, Mr. Trump’s behavior reinforces more and more candidates on the corner.
During the debate last week Debbie Lesko, a Republican congressional candidate, Arizona, freed Trent Franks, said that Mr. Trump “should consider” the claims against sexual indecency against him.
“I do not know that I can address this question, but certainly what I needed to address this, and should be investigated,” –