- Trump remains fixated with his election-fraud “big lie,” sources told Axios.
- He is judging allies’ loyalty by how rigidly they support the false claims, the outlet said.
- Sources told Axios that aides attempting to interest him in other issues have failed.
Former President Donald Trump remains fixated on overturning his loss in the 2020 election, and sees support for his bogus election fraud claims as a litmus test of loyalty, Axios reported.
Sources who spent time with Trump at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida told Axios that it’s impossible to carry on an extended conversation with the former president without him returning to his election-fraud obsession.
“We try to get him onto other topics, but you always get dragged back,” an unnamed Trump advisor told the outlet.
He’s intensely focused on demands that Republicans “get smart” and pursue efforts to “audit” and overturn that result, a source told Axios. Several such audits of the 2020 results have been launched, but have yet to find anything.
They told the publication that Trump is vetting candidates who he will support in upcoming elections on the basis of whether they support his election fraud “Big Lie”, and is seeking to punish Republicans who didn’t, the sources said.
Trump since losing to Joe Biden in last year’s election has relentlessly pushed claims, that have been rejected or defeated in a series of court cases, that his loss was the result of a vast plot by Democrats and the media.
The conspiracy theory fuelled the January 6 attack on the Capitol, when Trump supporters attempted to halt Biden’s certification as president. After the attack some Republicans called on Trump to be ousted from the Republican movement, though many at a federal, state and grassroots level have remained adamantly loyal.
Trump has supported primary challengers to Republicans who’ve been critical of him in several states,including North Carolina, Georgia and Alabama.
But some Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey Graham, have said that Trump needs to drop his fixation on the 2020 result, and the party needs to refocus on issues, such as education, that helped the Republicans to victory in the recent Virginia governor’s race.