WHITE HOUSE TO IGNORE TRUMP’S SPEECH TO CONSERVATIVES
President Joe Biden’s White House has made it clear it plans to ignore Donald Trump’s speech on Sunday (Monday, March 1, 2021, in Manila) before a conservative conference in Florida, where the former president is expected to go on the attack against his successor, Alexandra Alpert and Jarrett Renshaw reported for Reuters.
“Our focus is certainly not on what President Trump is saying” at the Conservative Political Action Conference, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters. It’s a strategy that has worked before, political veterans and historians say.
“Biden is obeying an old political rule, which is ‘Never get in the way of a train wreck,’” said Bob Shrum, former Democratic strategist and director of the Center for Political Future at University of Southern California.
Biden’s approval ratings in Gallup polls have remained above 55% since he took office on Jan. 20, and support for the White House’s $1.9 trillion COVID-relief package is higher.
“Why should somebody with a 60 percent approval rating be fighting with someone with a 33 percent approval rating?,” Shrum said.
“It just doesn’t make any sense.” Democratic strategist Steve Elmendorf agreed. “One of Biden’s great strengths in the campaign was he focused on the future ... he is doing exactly what he needs to do which is talk about COVID and the economy,” Elmendorf said. Meanwhile, Republicans are at loggerheads over how to deal with Trump’s legacy.
Several of the seven Republican senators who voted to convict Trump on an impeachment charge over the deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol have faced censure votes at home.
Others, like House minority leader Kevin McCarthy, have taken great pains to walk back initial criticism of Trump’s role on Jan. 6, when he urged his supporters to march on the Capitol.
“The Republicans are having a fight with themselves about Donald Trump,” Elmendorf said. “We should let them have it and stay out of it.”