Flake caught on hot mic saying GOP is 'toast' if it becomes party of Moore, Trump

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake was caught on a hot mic saying that "If we become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump, we are toast."

Flake made the remark in a conversation with a friend, Mesa Mayor John Giles, at a tax reform event in Mesa. 

ABC News:

Moore is running for the vacant Senate seat in Alabama left by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. He has come under fire for a number of allegations of sexual harassment and assault, but has refused to leave the race.

Trump is a frequent opponent for Flake, who announced last month he would not seek re-election in 2018 in a fiery speech condemning the president from the floor of the Senate.

Flake indirectly called out Trump in his Senate speech, saying, "We must dedicate ourselves to making sure that the anomalies never becomes the normal, with respect and humility."

He told ABC News' Mary Bruce of Moore in a Nov. 9 interview on Capitol Hill, "If there is any shred of truth to these stories, he ought to step aside. And now."

Jeff Flake is out of touch with the new political realities in the Trump era. Under the old paradigm, he might have been correct. The toxicity of Trump and especially Roy Moore would doom the GOP to defeat in 2018.

But politics doesn't work that way anymore. Witness Alabama voters hanging with Roy Moore despite sexual depravity charges from what even the Governor of Alabama, Kay Ivey, says are "credible" witnesses. Ivey and the state Republican party have all said they continue to support Moore. And while Trump's juvenile name calling, fact free rants, and flip flops have turned off a certain percentage of voters, his support among Republicans remains strong.

Flake just doesn't get it. No one cares about the sideshows anymore. Most GOP voters have not only turned off the media, but also question whether what the press is reporting is true at all. Most GOP candidates will probably not embrace Moore. But the only chance they have for victory in many cases is to embrace Trump. 

The dynamics of off year congressional elections have dramatically changed since 2010 when Republicans tapped the anger of voters over the passage of Obamacare. The tsunami that hit the Democrats resulted in the GOP flipping 63 House seats and 6 Senate seats. 

That election was won because of the massive turnout of Republican voters. Few voters switched sides. It was a turnout election all the way.

And that's why most GOP candidates will either embrace Trump or make an effort not to upset his supporters. Nothing that Donald Trump has done or said will cost the GOP the House or Senate. Rather, it has been a do nothing Congress that has angered voters from both parties. But they will surely lose if they try to distance themselves from the president, angering his supporters in their districts. They need those Trump voters to win which leaves them little choice but sink or swim with Trump at the head of the party.

No wonder Jeff Flake decided not to run for re-election.

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake was caught on a hot mic saying that "If we become the party of Roy Moore and Donald Trump, we are toast."

Flake made the remark in a conversation with a friend, Mesa Mayor John Giles, at a tax reform event in Mesa. 

ABC News:

Moore is running for the vacant Senate seat in Alabama left by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. He has come under fire for a number of allegations of sexual harassment and assault, but has refused to leave the race.

Trump is a frequent opponent for Flake, who announced last month he would not seek re-election in 2018 in a fiery speech condemning the president from the floor of the Senate.

Flake indirectly called out Trump in his Senate speech, saying, "We must dedicate ourselves to making sure that the anomalies never becomes the normal, with respect and humility."

He told ABC News' Mary Bruce of Moore in a Nov. 9 interview on Capitol Hill, "If there is any shred of truth to these stories, he ought to step aside. And now."

Jeff Flake is out of touch with the new political realities in the Trump era. Under the old paradigm, he might have been correct. The toxicity of Trump and especially Roy Moore would doom the GOP to defeat in 2018.

But politics doesn't work that way anymore. Witness Alabama voters hanging with Roy Moore despite sexual depravity charges from what even the Governor of Alabama, Kay Ivey, says are "credible" witnesses. Ivey and the state Republican party have all said they continue to support Moore. And while Trump's juvenile name calling, fact free rants, and flip flops have turned off a certain percentage of voters, his support among Republicans remains strong.

Flake just doesn't get it. No one cares about the sideshows anymore. Most GOP voters have not only turned off the media, but also question whether what the press is reporting is true at all. Most GOP candidates will probably not embrace Moore. But the only chance they have for victory in many cases is to embrace Trump. 

The dynamics of off year congressional elections have dramatically changed since 2010 when Republicans tapped the anger of voters over the passage of Obamacare. The tsunami that hit the Democrats resulted in the GOP flipping 63 House seats and 6 Senate seats. 

That election was won because of the massive turnout of Republican voters. Few voters switched sides. It was a turnout election all the way.

And that's why most GOP candidates will either embrace Trump or make an effort not to upset his supporters. Nothing that Donald Trump has done or said will cost the GOP the House or Senate. Rather, it has been a do nothing Congress that has angered voters from both parties. But they will surely lose if they try to distance themselves from the president, angering his supporters in their districts. They need those Trump voters to win which leaves them little choice but sink or swim with Trump at the head of the party.

No wonder Jeff Flake decided not to run for re-election.

RECENT VIDEOS