Reposted from my Substack.
As many as 24 former Trump staff members are now openly opposing his re-election campaign including Mike Pence, John Kelly and others.
CNN — There is a long list of one-time allies and aides who have either turned against former President Donald Trump or whom he has turned against.
No person in US politics – certainly no recent president – has such an expansive list of high-profile allies turned enemies.
His longest-serving White House chief of staff, retired Marine Gen. John Kelly, delivered an incredible rebuke of Trump’s personality and leadership in an on-the-record statement to CNN’s Jake Tapper.
Given that Trump is the front-runner for the GOP nomination in 2024 and simultaneously facing multiple criminal cases, both the campaign and the court proceedings could prompt additional people to speak out.
There is the argument that Democrats should welcome these un-endorsements and embrace them as further evidence in the validity of opposing Trump. Then there is also the fact that we wouldn’t have had Trump to deal with the first time if not for people who clearly knew better but supported him anyway.
Steve Shives clearly has a point. These people knew early on how horrible a human Trump was — and yet they stood by him. They worked with him and for him. They didn’t speak out, they didn’t come forward. Not until after, not until long after it was far too late.
But why did that happen?
In this clip, former Trumper Cassidy Hutchinson explains what a difficult and painful path it was for her to reject being a hardcore Trump supporter to her current position as an ardent Trump critic.
People such as Alyssa Farrah-Griffin left the Trump Administration immediately on January 6, but Hutchinson returned to work on Jan 7, despite what had happened. She was still invested in Trump, she was still a supporter, and she herself felt that people such as Farrah-Griffin were “disloyal.”
Even though she realizes, saying that now, that it’s “ludicrous.”
“This was an important part of this transformation period for me — because on the other hand when I saw her there was a little bit of envy. I was proud of her for doing what she felt she had to be doing and for using her voice. And I give Alyssah a lot of credit — I eventually came to her side, and she was the one that welcomes me and helps me get to this point.
But I say all this Jake because I did struggle with what I should do. I had committed to moving to Florida with the former President. And again, it’s that push-pull inside of me where I felt on one hand I felt that January 6 happened because we — the staff — didn’t do enough to stop it. We, the staff, should have not let people around him that would have stroked this desire for him to overturn the election on January 6.”
So it’s fair to say that Hutchinson does take some personal responsibility for what happened. She feels that the staff didn’t do enough to block Trump from traveling down the wrong path.
This is exactly the sentiment of people like Miles Taylor who wrote the “We are the Steady State” op-ed for the NYTimes under the pseudonym “Anonymous.”
Eventually, Taylor as Anonymous came forward and revealed himself.
Miles, as Homeland Security Chief of staff, documented that on top of the realization that Trump was a loose cannon came a responsibility to keep him from careening off the rails into full-on Authoritarianism.
“At the end of the day, the man with his finger on the Nuclear button is.a man whose mind is not on his job, on a daily basis. That is alarming and it isn’t what just a handful of people in the administration felt.”
Many of these people like Hutchinson and Taylor are still true believers in the Republican and Libertarian project writ large. They are still die-hards, and that’s why they joined and supported the Trump administration to start with. It’s just that they eventually came to realize that Trump himself is not fit to serve the nation.
Many of the rest of us knew that as soon as he slithered down that escalator. Others took a little more time and some up close experiences.
I do understand Shives’ feelings of betrayal and resentment for those who paved the road to Trump’s malfeasance. And I do understand that it’s hard to fully trust and embrace people who held their tongues until they could cash in with their own tell-all books.
But we need them. We can use their inside information to show very clearly that Trump is still unfit to serve and we can point out that without people such as Kelly and Taylor there will only be conscienceless sycophants holding the reigns of power in a 2nd Trump Administration.
The Heritage Foundation’s Project 2025 is currently recruiting 20,000 of these dangerous uber-believers right now.
Their rise and return to power — can’t be allowed.
Visit and subscribe to my new Substack Page.Or Check out my Music Patreon at Vyan Makes Music