Last week was a period of high highs and low lows for former President Donald Trump.
Former Vice President Mike Pence indicated that he would be willing to consider testifying before the House's January 6 committee, and the investigations into election interference and illegally removed classified documents continued.
But there's at least one bright point in last week if you're Trump: political rival and J6 committee vice chairwoman Liz Cheney lost her congressional primary in Wyoming. Trump has taken to his social media platform Truth Social to crow about her loss (which he sees as his win) and try to take her down a few notches. Unfortunately for Trump, Cheney may be out in January - but January is a long way away and the J6 committee is reconvening soon. And things don't look great for the former President.
J6 Committee Hearings Return in September
Trump took to Truth Social with his thoughts on Cheney's loss over the weekend, which he sees as his own big win after endorsing her rival.
Trump wrote on Truth, "The Fake News Media has badly soiled Liz Cheney, who has just suffered the biggest defeat of a sitting Congressperson in history (broke the record of another Impeacher, Tom Rice of South Carolina!), losing by 40 points, all over the place doing interviews that nobody wants to hear. No wonder their ratings are sooo BAD. Her record setting horrible results were a referendum on the Unselect Committee of political Hacks and Thugs, of which she is definitely one! Amazing how they keep her on the air?"
But even though he's keeping score on how many channels are interviewing Cheney versus himself, one truth remains unassailable: Trump can't stop the Department of Justice on whatever course they're pursuing.
Trump is trying desperately to keep the attention on the midterms and political back-and-forths instead of the heart of the issues that are thrusting him into the spotlight, which include possible criminal activity that could land him with multiple indictments.
And Cheney will not be gone until January. In the meantime, the January 6 House Committee reconvenes in September, with more information to put before the public - and more being presented to them nearly daily. And with the potential bombshell addition of Mike Pence's testimony, Trump's already shaky reputation could take a massive blow before the midterms in November. Of course, those who are loyal to Trump are unlikely to be swayed no matter what's revealed. But those on the fence could be shoved in one direction or the other once the committee resumes next month, and Trump has to be keenly aware of that fact even as he pretends Cheney's ousting is already complete.
Is All of This Attention Good or Bad for Trump?
Trump is certainly basking in the glow of renewed attention.
Suddenly, cable news channels that refused to host him are inviting him back to speak his piece, and people are talking about Trump again after the Mar-a-Lago raid.
But is all of this good for Trump, or is it fencing him into a troubled spot?
Until the Department of Justice moves in one direction or another, it's hard to say. If criminal charges aren't brought against Trump, all of the attention is glorious - and will both energize and enrage his base for the 2022 midterms and 2024 general election. But if criminal charges are levied against the former President, all of this attention could spell his doom. After all, Trump is freely speaking about his feelings, thoughts and indignations, assuming he shall remain a free person. But those very words could work against him - depending, of course, on what the Department of Justice is currently investigating.