Former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) went on CNN on Monday to attack Donald Trump and his supporters, saying that the “popularity and strength” of the former president were fleeting every day.
Flake said this during a panel discussion on the recent comments Trump made about Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who the former president called a “stone-cold loser” and a “dumb son of a b****.”
“You know, it’s amazing to me, Wolf, that they sit in this room and hear more name-calling, more divisiveness, more anger,” said former Gov. John Kasich (R-OH). “I mean, how do you expect to sell something to voters when you’re just divisive and angry and name-calling and belittling? The party needs to move to a set of issues that will improve the lives of Americans, and so far, I haven’t heard any of what they plan to do. As far as I’m concerned, the party is going to continue to shrink and not connect.”
“We’ve been hearing a lot from John Boehner, the former Republican Speaker, Senator, talking about how the Republican Party needs to get back to its roots, the party of Boehner,” said host Wolf Blitzer. “So you think that party still exists?”
That’s when Flake chimed in to give his two cents.
“I think there are a number of Republicans, a lot of Republicans who want the get back there,” Flake said. “John was right, what went on in Mar-a-Lago, it plays well to the base, but it’s a shrinking base. If we want to be successful in future elections, then we have to do more what John Boehner is talking about. We’ve got to appeal to a broader electorate. That shouldn’t be hard to figure out, but that is what we have to do.”
Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) also addressed the comments that Trump made about McConnell during a CNN interview of his own on Tuesday morning, saying that he does not “think comments like that are helpful.”
“Well, former President Trump has a large following out there among members of our party, and I think we all acknowledge that. I don’t think comments like that are helpful,” Wicker said. “And I think … as this year, 2021, moves along and then we move into 2022, the actual election year, I think we’ll be more focused, and should be more focused, on the different approaches of the two parties.”
“And I think in an off-year election, the first even-numbered election after a presidential race, the party that is not in power often gains seats. And think there will be every reason for the American people to vote for some sort of balance,” he concluded.