“The assault on the Capitol was the end result of years of eroding the road between truth and fiction and proper and flawed,” mentioned Rory Cooper, a Republican strategist. Mr. Cooper argued there was a gap now for a “conservative candidate” to definitively decouple appeals to regulation and order from the selective enforcement of the Trump period, “however we’re a long way from that point.”
Different Republicans insist no floor has been misplaced on the difficulty — that the social gathering will possible retain the higher hand within the eyes of voters. “I feel Republicans proper now have the benefit of regulation and order and nonetheless do, no matter” what occurred on the Capitol, mentioned Chris Russell, a longtime Republican advisor and advert maker.
And will Democrats “stick with a defund-the-police message,” Mr. Russell added — although Mr. Biden has denounced it — Republican candidates will possible proceed to search out success in framing their social gathering as extra dedicated to public security, extra supportive of regulation enforcement.
All of which squares with how some Republican lawmakers have rationalized the Capitol assault. They insist that the ocean of marchers and rioters was not the outgrowth of months of indulging the president’s lie that the election was stolen, was not reflective of the social gathering’s core, certainly was not reflective of the social gathering in any respect. Throughout the nation, Republican officers have claimed falsely that the deaths and injury have been brought on by antifa.
Hogan Gidley, a spokesman for the president, argued Mr. Trump’s message of affection had not included those that stormed the Capitol. “The president was not speaking about these individuals; clearly it was the individuals who have been there to peaceably assemble, peaceably protest,” Mr. Gidley mentioned, although Mr. Trump had not specified this truth. “As a result of we imagine in defending not simply the idea of regulation and order, however the precise courageous women and men who institute regulation and order.”
But if regulation and order means a dedication to equal safety and justice, not even Mr. Trump’s personal aides appear certain that, within the ultimate days of his presidency, his supporters will abide it.
And so the law-and-order presidency ends like this: a whole bunch of Nationwide Guardsmen posted behind a seven-foot fence looped by razor wire, defending the Capitol not from the individuals Mr. Trump spent his presidency demonizing, however all those he didn’t.