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Pennsylvania Republican Blasts GOP Leadership For ‘Cowering In Fear’ Of The Fringe Elements Of The Party

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Charlie Dent blasts Kevin McCarthy

In a blistering opinion piece published by CNN, former Republican congressman Charlie Dent (PA) slammed members of his own party for cowering on fear of Donald Trump and “fringe elements like Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Madison Cawthorn, Matt Gaetz, and a few others who have made extreme and inflammatory comments part of their political brand.”

Dent’s comments came in response to the recently released audio recordings of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy expressing his frustration with Trump in the days after the January 6, 2021 attack on the US Capitol. Dent says that the leaked audio has laid bare what is destroying the Republican party from the inside: “fear”

“Far too many Republicans serve in Congress under a constant cloud of fear. Let’s call them the Fear Caucus,” the Pennsylvania Republican wrote. “This group of decent men and women are unfortunately too worried about their own positions to publicly say what they believe about the former President’s conduct, temperament and fitness for office.”

Dent said that “What McCarthy said in exasperation about Trump’s responsibility for the Capitol riot probably reflects the sentiments of the majority of House and Senate Republicans. But what these Republicans are willing to say in public is too often another story.”

He then urged GOP members of the Fear Caucus to “overcome their anxieties and speak out about former President Trump, especially when it comes to the lie that the 2020 election was stolen,” adding that “silence only empowers the fringe elements of the GOP and fear makes even the most essential governance, like raising the debt ceiling or passing necessary funding bills, extraordinarily difficult.”

In his OpEd, the former lawmaker lamented that “in the last decade, the fringe elements within the Republican party have increasingly dominated the GOP’s narrative” and predicted that “this problem will persist unless the decent people of the Republican Party stand up, speak out and lead from a position of strength instead of fear.”

He then offered a pathway to defeat fringe elements in the GOP: “Launch primaries is to fight them. Full stop.

Dent concluded that white Trump remains a dangerous political figure, despite his diminishing stature, the former president and the extremists are “outnumbered.”

“The more good Republicans publicly speak out against extremism, the more likely Trump’s grip on the GOP can be broken,” he wrote. “It’s called leadership, and it’s liberating. It certainly beats cowering in fear.”

Read the entire piece at CNN.