Editor’s Note: Richard N. Bond is a longtime Republican Party activist. He was chairman of the Republican National Committee from 1992 to 1993. The views expressed in this commentary are his own. View more opinion on CNN.
As the 2022 primary season gets underway, those of us who have long opposed former President Donald Trump may finally begin seeing an end to his reign over the Republican Party.
Just consider the current realities Trump faces.
His legal woes and their attendant distractions have not gone away. Investigations in New York and Georgia continue, and a court filing outlining potential evidence of criminal conspiracy by the January 6 House select committee also looms large. (Trump denies wrongdoing in all.)
Meanwhile, Trump, once the master of social media with more than 88 million Twitter followers and 35 million on Facebook before the insurrection, has had disastrous results in creating his own online platforms. He terminated his blog, “From the Desk of Donald J. Trump,” after 29 days due to what aides describe as lack of readers and negative press. His recently announced social media network, Truth Social, has suffered from an inept rollout involving technical glitches and a 13-hour site outage.
Trump’s standing among Republicans continues to weaken. A recent NBC poll shows a significant decline in his hold on the GOP. While previous surveys showed that up to 54% of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters say they self-identified as supporters of Trump rather than the Republican Party, the new survey shows that 56% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents consider themselves supporters of the GOP. Only 36% consider themselves supporters of the former President – a significant marker of Trump fatigue.
His behavior and inane remarks have likely contributed to the decline. For example, his early praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, using terms such as “genius” and “pretty savvy,” contrasts with President Joe Biden’s recent branding of the Russian leader as “a war criminal.” A Quinnipiac University poll found that Americans are overwhelmingly pro-Ukraine – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has a 64% a