Josh Hawley, the Missouri senator who once had the support of liberal Republican John Danforth, is now the poster-boy for the far-right Republican Party. In this longform piece at The Washington Post, Michael Kranish chronicles how Hawley ascended to such a prominent position in today’s GOP. He will be forever remembered, along with Donald Trump, as the politician who incited the January 6, 2021 insurrection on the U.S. Capitol.
“You have caused this!” Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) erupted at him, referring to the events building up to the storming of the Capitol, according to a person familiar with the exchange, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe private conversations.
Over the course of his rapid rise in politics — from law school professor to state attorney general to his 2018 election to the Senate — Hawley has followed two parallel paths, each reflecting a different political persona.
On one, he has pursued elite privilege, even relative to other senators, commuting to a private high school, attending Stanford University and Yale Law School, clerking at the Supreme Court, and working for a powerful Washington law firm, all while courting liberal professors and establishment Republicans who enabled his ascent.
On the other, he has expressed sympathy with some of the country’s most far-right, anti-government extremists, demonstrating a willingness to see the world through their grievance-infused prism even after horrific attacks — from Oklahoma City in 1995, when he was 15, to the Capitol attack in 2021.
Read the rest here.