The Pro-Trump Case for Rejecting the Big Lie

Weston Wamp, a young conservative from Tennessee, is on a mission to convince others on the right that Joe Biden won the 2020 election.
Then Republican U.S. congressional primary candidate Weston Wamp enters his campaign headquarters to address a crowd of...
Wamp doesn’t delight in making fun of Donald Trump. His message is that the Big Lie is ultimately bad for the G.O.P.Photograph by Doug Strickland / Chattanooga Times Free Press / AP

This past week, days before Donald Trump told a crowd of supporters in Conroe, Texas, that “the 2020 election was rigged and everyone knows it,” Weston Wamp, who voted for Trump, appeared in the third episode of his video series, “Truthtellers.” “You know, a lot of people still have unanswered questions about the 2020 election,” he says at the start of the episode, titled “Off the Rails.” According to a number of recent polls, eighty per cent of Republicans still don’t believe that Joe Biden won the election. Wamp, who is thirty-four and talks with the unhurried cadences of southeast Tennessee, where he grew up and still lives, is not among them; he’s on a mission to convince others on the right that the Big Lie is a big lie. “I’ve tried to approach it with the sobriety of being a conservative Republican who lives every day with the reality that a lot of my friends and fellow-Republicans still question the results of the 2020 election,” he told me. “I am a fiscal conservative and a social conservative, and I just happen to have a real interest in the truth.”

With its modest production values, “Truthtellers” has a homemade vibe that reflects Wamp’s conviction that facts matter. Unlike the efforts of Republican Never Trumpers, such as the Lincoln Project, which released a series of videos during the 2020 election season that delighted in making fun of the President and his minions, the tone is earnest, often credulous. “We’ve tried to be diligent in our research and humble in our approach,” Wamp said. “I didn’t want to treat my fellow-Republicans like they had bad intentions in thinking that something had gone wrong with the election or that they weren’t smart enough to understand it, but quite the opposite. Where there was smoke, we wanted to see if there was fire.”