Trump impeachment trial

GOP Sen. Thune accuses Trump allies of "cancel culture" after impeachment vote

Picture of John Thune speaking into a microphone while Mitch McConnell stands in the background
Photo: Rod Lamkey-Pool/Getty Images

Senate Minority Whip John Thune (R-S.D.) on Thursday accused Trump allies of engaging in "cancel culture" by rushing to censure Republican lawmakers for voting to impeach or convict former President Trump for his role in the Capitol insurrection.

Why it matters: The comments by Thune, the No. 2 Republican in the Senate, underscore the growing divide between mainstream GOP leaders and Trump supporters, who still dominate the party's base. Thune called Trump's actions after the election "inexcusable" in an interview with the AP.

Trump: GOP senators “will not win again” if they support McConnell

Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell
Donald Trump and Sen. Mitch McConnell. Photos: Getty Images

Donald Trump went scorched earth on Sen. Mitch McConnell on Tuesday, releasing a long statement that hammered the GOP Senate leader in highly personal terms.

Why it matters: The blistering statement is vintage Trump, who frequently lashes out at critics. But it also shows the former president's attempt to remain atop the GOP power structure will mean tearing down every perceived internal obstacle.