Donald Trump’s takeover of the Republican Party is underway.
His staffers are lining up to run for offices up and down the ballot. Loyalists are looking to dislodge state party leaders who are perceived as insufficiently committed to the president-elect. And a top Trump aide has emerged as a leading contender to become the next chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Less than a month after Election Day, the party that once kept Trump at arm’s length is gradually being commandeered by him, a turnabout that GOP establishment forces could have scarcely imagined just a few months ago.
“Every Republican president since Lincoln remakes the party in their image — and particularly in the case of Trump, who has led a movement, you’ll see a lot of candidates,” said Roger Stone, a longtime Trump friend and informal adviser.
Some Trump allies are looking to take down Republicans who have been less-than-welcoming to the incoming president. Over the weekend, Jane Timken, an Ohio Republican who raised money for the president-elect, wrote a letter to state GOP officials informing that she would be challenging Matt Borges, the highly effective state party chairman who clashed bitterly with Trump’s campaign. Several weeks before the election, Trump’s team announced it had severed ties with Borges.