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Never-Trump Group Offers $50 Mln Support For GOP Lawmakers Who Oppose Trump

© REUTERS / J. Scott ApplewhiteThe Republican side, right, in the House chamber is seen as Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Vice President Mike Pence officiate as a joint session of the House and Senate
The Republican side, right, in the House chamber is seen as Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Vice President Mike Pence officiate as a joint session of the House and Senate - Sputnik International
Democrats are intending to force the outgoing US president, Donald Trump, to resign through impeachment, accusing him of inciting an angry mob on 6 January to storm the Capitol building. Trump more than once said he wanted "no violence" on US streets and described the move to impeach him a second time as a "continuation of the greatest witch hunt".

Bill Kristol, a leading figure of the anti-Trump movement, Defending Democracy Together, tweeted on Tuesday the launch of a Republican Accountability Project initiative, implying that those Republican lawmakers who act against the outgoing US president, Donald Trump, will be eligible to receive support from a newly-established $50 million fund for protection and future primaries.

Kristol claimed that the cash would help “defend Republicans who act to hold President Trump accountable for inciting an attack on the US Capitol, and to deploy against those who continue to lie to voters about widespread election fraud.”

Among the Project's primary aims announced by Kristol are:

  • accountability of "Republican members of Congress who have enabled or capitulated to Trump by objecting to certifying a free and fair election accountable--including by helping credible primary challengers against them";
  • insurance that "ample resources are available for those principled Republicans who do the right thing and hold Trump accountable for inciting an attack on the US Capitol to defend against primary challengers";
  • support for "new candidates who would be principled Republicans if elected to office" in primaries in open or redistricted seats.

In a personal statement as chair of Defending Democracy Together, Kristol urged Republicans to “do the right thing” and “vote to impeach or remove Donald Trump”.

“We say to any Republican who votes to impeach or remove Donald Trump: You will not be left alone. We will help you against primary challenges. And before the challenges emerge, we will help explain your vote to your constituents. So do the right thing. We will have your back”, he wrote.

The Defending Democracy Together group presenting the initiative is considered to be a never-Trump conservative organization. The so-called Never Trumpers earlier created other political enterprises such as Republicans for the Rule of Law and Republican Voters Against Trump. The group was founded in 2019 by Bill Kristol, Mona Charen, Linda Chavez, Sarah Longwell, and Andy Zwick.

Capitol storming aftermath

Last week, a violent mass protest in Washington that saw five people killed occurred as the certification of the Electoral College vote was being held. Trump supporters violently attacked and entered the Capitol and interrupted the joint Congress session, breaking windows, stealing and causing damage and vandalism to parts of the interior, alongside death and multiple injuries.

Trump has concurrently and repeatedly denied that he encouraged his supporters to attack the US Capitol. On January 6 he tweeted that his supporters should "go home now" and observe "law and order".

Law enforcement agencies throughout the country are looking for information about those who participated in the 6 January Capitol building attacks. Some protesters have been apprehended and charged, including two US Capitol Police officers that were suspended for facilitating the rioters entry into the capitol building.

Democrats and a number of Republicans are demanding the US president’s resignation, accusing him of responsibility for the 6 January deaths caused by Trump’s supporters.

They have urged Vice President Mike Pence to enact Section 4 of the 25th Amendment to force Trump to step down. US House Democrats on 11 January introduced a second article of impeachment against POTUSm accusing him of "inciting insurrection".

Several Trump loyalists have resigned following the political turmoil of the violent Capitol attack, including Transportation Secretary - and wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell - Elaine Chao, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf.

As Biden's inauguration approaches, law enforcement have warned that they expect large demonstrations and armed protests. The Pentagon has deployed 6,200 National Guard troops to Washington DC and its immediate environs until at least February 6, and the guard has been authorized to deploy as many as 15,000 troops, if additional forces are requested.

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