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House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy with Trump in 2019. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former Republican pollster Frank Luntz tells Kara Swisher on her New York Times podcast "Sway" that Donald Trump's lies about the 2020 election "could cost the Republicans the majority in the House in 2022."

Why it matters: The former president is still the most popular figure in the Republican Party, but his baseless claims about the election have alienated moderates and key GOP leaders — including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Republican Conference Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.).

Key exchange:

  • Luntz: "More than two-thirds of Republicans believe that the election was stolen."
  • Swisher: "So it's working. This 'Big Lie' thing is working."
  • Luntz: "It is working. ... What Donald Trump is saying is actually telling people it's not worth it to vote. Donald Trump single-handedly may cause people not to vote. And he may be the greatest tool in the Democrats' arsenal to keep control of the House and Senate in 2022."

The big picture: "If Donald Trump runs for president as a Republican, he's the odds-on favorite to win the nomination," Luntz added. "He could never win a general election, but I can't imagine losing a Republican primary. ... I would bet on him to be the nominee and I would bet on him losing to whatever Democratic nominee there was."

Go deeper

Wyoming GOP leaders will no longer recognize Liz Cheney over Trump vote

Rep. Liz Cheney, (R-Wyo.), delivers an opening statement during the opening hearing of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol on July 27, 2021. Photo: Oliver Contreras-Pool/Getty Images

Two Wyoming Republican leaders voted to no longer recognize Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wy.) as a member of their party, six months after she voted to impeach former President Trump, per the Casper Star-Tribune.

Why it matters: While symbolic, the move is the latest censuring that Cheney has faced for diverging from much of her party's response to the Capitol riot.

Wisconsin governor vetoes GOP bills restricting absentee ballots

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers. Photo: Melina Mara - Pool/Getty Images)

Wisconsin's Democratic Gov. Tony Evers on Tuesday vetoed several bills passed by the Republican-controlled state legislature that would impose new restrictions on absentee ballots.

Driving the news: The bills seek to prevent election workers from filling in missing information on absentee ballots — making it punishable by up to a $10,000 fine and three years in prison — and require disabled and older voters to show ID to be able to vote via absentee ballot.

Aug 10, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Senate passes $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package

President Biden with Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and other bipartisan senators. Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

The Senate voted 69-30 on Tuesday to pass the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, handing a major victory to President Biden and a group of senators that spent months negotiating on the agreement.

Why it matters: The monster bill would deliver hundreds of billions of dollars for roads, bridges, waterways and other "hard infrastructure" items. It is widely seen as a victory for both parties and the reputation of the Senate, especially given the current level of polarization in Congress.