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President Trump is on his way to Texas on Tuesday in a final attempt to show one of his signature problems – the border wall – as Democratic lawmakers appear ready to go ahead with accusing him for the second time.
He has only one week left in office, but angry lawmakers are urging him to resign after a violent mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol last Wednesday when a joint congressional session met inside to confirm the election result.
During the visit to the Alamo – a small town in the Rio Grande Valley – Trump plans to notice that 400 miles of border wall went up during his time, a White House spokesman said.
This will be Trump’s first public appearance – in addition to video statements – since Wednesday morning, when he urged his supporters to head to the Capitol when Congress formalized the victory of President-elect Joe Biden.
Political analysts say it is an overt attempt to rehabilitate his image when his legacy is at stake.
“Every president is trying to burn out his legacy by highlighting perceived successes in recent days,” said Alex Conant, a Republican strategist who worked on Republican Senator Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign in 2016. “Trump’s problem among many is that this trip will be completely overshadowed by last week’s fallout. “
Trump fought for a promise to crack down on immigration. The clearest example of this was his promise to build a “large, beautiful wall” along the border between the United States and Mexico – a core subject for his base.
Most ordinary Republicans prefer if Trump just quietly fades away, said Sean Walsh, a Republican strategist who worked in Reagan and George HW Bush White Houses.
But Walsh said this trip makes it clear that Trump does not plan to do so. And Walsh is worried that Trump could actually make things worse by choosing such a hot-button issue.
“I could see if he did not temper his remarks and whip up some activists,” Walsh said. “So I think we need to keep our eyes and ears very close to President Trump.”
The latest Quinnipiac University survey taken after the attack shows that Trump’s job approval has fallen 11 points since December and has fallen to 33% – the lowest it has been since August 2017.
Conant said the political setback from the Capitol uprising is probably too great for Trump to overcome. He said the president’s refusal to concede the election and the will to evoke conspiracy theories other than ensured that he would be remembered for the bitter end to his term in office instead of his political achievements, such as tax cuts and naming three Supreme Court justices.
“I think until Donald Trump does not admit the election correctly and recognizes Joe Biden as the president-elect, he will not be able to talk about anything else,” Conant said. “And his inheritance loses strength in the hour.”