Analysis: Nunes’ decision to leave Congress for Trump’s social media company indicates where power lies in the conservative movement


As the top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee, Devin Nunes was next to become its chairman if Republicans took over the House in 2022. That is, Nunes would have achieved what is widely regarded as the most powerful presidency in the House of Representatives.

And all he had to do was stay in Congress.

But Nunes decided to reject the opportunity. Instead, he announced that he had joined Donald Trump’s social media firm, Truth Social, as CEO. Nunes said he was “humbled and honored” to have been put in charge of this work.

Nunes’ decision says a lot about where power lies in the conservative movement – or, at least, where Nunes thinks it is. This is not about writing complex tax legislation in Congress. No, Nunes’ decision indicates that he believes the power lies in the pro-Trump media.

And Nunes is not wrong. I have long emphasized that key figures in the right-wing media – people like Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and many others – have much more influence on the state of the GOP than lawmakers, including powerful figures like than Mitch McConnell.

Lawmakers don’t define the narratives inside the GOP as much as they react to their constituents’ action on those narratives. The people responsible for setting up the narratives are the media propagandists who much of the conservative base trusts and whom they turn to for their news and information.

Nunes has indicated for some time that he understood this, becoming a regular commentator on Fox News over the years. His decision to leave the ship on Monday shows that he is now fully committed to this path …

red flags

It’s also not as if Trump’s business is hugely successful. Yes, Trump says he got a $ 1 billion investment. But Truth Social is still a fledgling company that has – in a short period of time in the public arena – put up some serious red flags.

On the one hand, he missed the self-imposed deadline to release a product. When it was first announced, the site was immediately targeted with success by hackers. And on Monday, it was revealed in public documents that the PSPC making it public is under investigation by the SEC and FINRA.

In other words, Nunes isn’t even leaving Congress for a safe bet on a right-wing platform like Fox News. This makes his gesture even more remarkable …

Big picture

At Axios, Sara Fischer and Dan Primack posted a must-read story on Monday morning about how the right is building its own green bedroom. “Conservatives are aggressively creating their own apps, phones, cryptocurrencies and publishing houses in an attempt to bypass what they see as an increasingly liberal internet and media ecosystem,” the duo astutely reported.

FOR REGISTRATION

– Casey Newton: “Devin Nunes, who sued Twitter because someone pretending to be his cow laughed at him there, will now be running some sort of Trump social platform. Happy to read the guidelines from the community…” (Twitter)
– Dick Tofel’s reference to Nunes ‘numerous lawsuits against news outlets and writers: “I look forward to seeing Devin Nunes’ views on defamation laws evolve now that he is going. probably be an editor … “(Twitter)
– Tim Miller’s Perspective: “Growing up, every story I was told about politics treated the W&M presidency as if it was the height of power and influence. Nunes accepts him to lead Friendster for the Fanatics. The decline of Congress in miniature. .. “(Twitter)
– Timothy L. O’Brien: “Who just gave Trump $ 1 billion?” Let’s find out … ”(Bloomberg)



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