Republican lawmakers are publicly supporting President Trump's election legal efforts as part of a "transactional" move, The Washington Examiner reports.
In private, writes the Examiner, many Republicans concede President-elect Joe Biden won the election and are skeptical that the Trump campaign's claims of widespread voter fraud will amount to anything. But there's reportedly also a sense that if they don't stand by the president now, more vulnerable lawmakers could face repercussions down the line at the voting booth. GOP operative and former Trump adviser Brian Lanza told the Examiner that if congressional Republicans "inject themselves before the conversation ends," Trump's base "is going to turn its" back on them.
"So long as the campaign is pursuing legal remedies, the voters will expect our politicians to hang in there," a Republican strategist told the Examiner. "Trump's never-back-down approach is about 90 percent of his appeal for Republican voters."
The first test will be coming up shortly, when Georgia's Republican senators, Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, will try to stave off their Democratic challengers in separate January runoffs. That's where Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) focus lies, The Washington Post's Robert Costa reports, but in order to achieve it, he reportedly needs to stick by Trump for the time being. Read more at The Washington Examiner. Tim O'Donnell