January 29, 2023

ODD CHOICE: GOP turns to Kellyanne Conway for a post midterms makeover

EXCUSE YOU? Kellyanne Conway claims she pushed back on Trump pardons

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The Republican Party is disappointed in the outcome of the midterm elections, so they’re building a board to review exactly what went wrong, and how they can do better in the next election — and Kellyanne Conway, who rose to quick infamy when she defended Donald Trump’s lies as “alternative facts,” is one member.

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Conway is perhaps not the most puzzling member of the board — she joins Blake Masters, one of the GOP candidates who was not successful in 2022, and Family Research Council lobbyist Tony Perkins. (Religious extremism, specifically in the area of women’s health, is one of the issues credited for losing support for conservative candidates this election cycle.)

She’s notable, however, for a particularly awkward political history. While she was serving in Trump’s administration, her most notable achievement was obfuscation on behalf of the president, never ceasing to defend him and deflect criticism.

Now, Trump has been argued by some strategists to be the party’s greatest liability and the divisive force that helped the GOP lose 2022 races that might have otherwise been an easy sweep.

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Conway, who spoke to the January 6th House Select Committee on Monday, hasn’t publicly shifted her support away from her former boss, but as a member of the advisory board, she may find she has to face hard truths about his influence on the party.

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From The Daily Beast:

“As we assess the midterms and plan for 2024, we are gathering a diverse range of respected leaders in our movement to join together and help chart a winning course in the years to come,” RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel said in a statement. “I am thrilled that this talented group of Republicans will be shoulder to shoulder with us as we work to grow our party, hold Democrats accountable, and elect Republicans.”

Conway’s exit from politics was also of note — after a series of disturbances and scandals involving her personal life, including her daughter Claudia, then a minor, coming forward with complaints about Kellyanne’s parenting, she said she was getting out of the political sphere to stay home and focus on family life.

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There’s no outward sign that decision worked out well for anyone involved — since then, Claudia has publicly alleged that Kellyanne posted a nude of the teenager (still a minor at the time) on Twitter, and has spilled routinely on social media about interactions she describes as abusive in the home.

Steph Bazzle covers politics and theocracy, always aiming for a world free from extremism and authoritarianism. Follow Steph on Twitter @imjustasteph.

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