After four years of fealty, some prominent Republicans finally spoke out against former President Donald Trump after his lies about the 2020 election prompted a mob of pro-Trump extremists to storm the United States Capitol, resulting in the deaths of at least five people.
Trump received pushback from longtime allies like then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), but despite their condemnations, they voted to acquit him in his second Senate impeachment trial. They've also indicated they'd support Trump if he runs for reelection in 2024.
Former South Carolina Governor and Trump's former Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, spoke out against Trump in the aftermath as well.
Haley told Tim Alberta in an interview for Politico:
"We need to acknowledge [Trump] let us down. He went down a path he shouldn't have, and we shouldn't have followed him, and we shouldn't have listened to him. And we can't let that ever happen again."
But with Trump still topping the polls for the 2024 Republican nomination, Haley—herself a long-speculated presidential candidate—was recently asked if she'd support him should he decide to mount another presidential campaign.
Haley confirmed that she would support Trump in his potential presidential bid, and that she herself wouldn't run if he launched a campaign, saying:
"I would not run if President Trump ran, and I would talk to him about it. That's something that we will have a conversation about at some point if that decision is something that has to be made ... I had a great working relationship with him, I appreciated the way he let me do my job, I thought we did some fantastically great foreign policy things together."
Months earlier, Haley speculated that Trump wouldn't run for President again because he'd "fallen so far."
Her latest answer wasn't well-received.
There aren’t enough vomit emojis in the world. https://t.co/HsmaRwqxeD— Sarah Longwell (@Sarah Longwell)1618262951.0
He's not the incumbent. He lost. He is owed no deference. There is no norm or custom saying he's the default nomine… https://t.co/PnScfpPYsc— Tim Carney (@Tim Carney)1618262602.0
Any #GOP presidential hopeful who says they would not run in 2024 because they think Trump would be a better candid… https://t.co/P1Tb43fO4M— Bruce Bourgoine (@Bruce Bourgoine)1618273255.0
“I’m the right person for the job. Unless the guy who was impeached twice, failed to get reelected, never read his… https://t.co/S583VcJUfP— Windsor Mann (@Windsor Mann)1618319452.0
Wow. Okay. Looks like that whole attempted overthrow of American democracy is no longer a problem for her. https://t.co/x6EagC3Qj7— S.V. Dáte (@S.V. Dáte)1618259990.0
Her answer once again illustrated the level of subservience Republican politicians continue to bestow upon Trump, a historically unpopular President who lost reelection by millions of votes.
I literally had someone close to me absolutely all over me today about why I won't support "good Republicans" like… https://t.co/LmLUzItWY3— Fred Wellman (@Fred Wellman)1618260740.0
I'm actually surprised it took this long for all the Republicans who said Trump was responsible for the actions in… https://t.co/gINtWCeGBH— AmyLaura (@AmyLaura)1618265857.0
I am appalled and humbled by the number of Republicans I thought well of who have sold their souls to a vile would-… https://t.co/abMF5f5g3K— Garry Kasparov (@Garry Kasparov)1618272685.0
Just three months after Trump incited a riot at the US Capitol, Nikki Haley is still fully behind Dear Leader to th… https://t.co/u1lCN8YOhW— Josh Jordan (@Josh Jordan)1618260087.0
The willingness of Republicans & their party to gloss over the malignancy of the Trump presidency & treat him like… https://t.co/p8CiUrvcSt— Joyce Alene (@Joyce Alene)1618322777.0
There's a long way to go before primaries for the 2024 election begin, but for the Republican party, you can be certain that loyalty to Trump will be a huge talking point—if Trump doesn't run himself.