Adam Kinzinger Rejects Calls To 'Surrender' in GOP Civil War Over Donald Trump

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) has said he will not walk back his opposition to former President Donald Trump and facilitate an end to the ongoing GOP civil war, insisting "what is being demanded is not unity, but surrender."

Kinzinger has been an outspoken critic of Trump and was one of the 10 Republican lawmakers in the House who voted to impeach him. His positions have put him at odds with some within the party, amid ongoing splits over what impact the former president should have on the party moving forward.

The Illinois Republican set up a PAC earlier this year to support candidates more in line with what he sees as the principles of the Republican Party.

Kinzinger said he has had "some people call me," urging him to pull back on his "Country First movement"—suggesting these requests have been framed as being "in the interest of 'unity.'"

In a Twitter thread, he said: "First, the idea that country first values violates unity is of itself a concern but ok for a moment let's say I did that.

"Now the many millions of people who feel homeless under the current GOP and Dem parties would not be represented. We 'unify' a shrinking base."

On his criticism of the president, he said: "If I call out the former President and the insurrection, I threaten unity... when the president calls out the 17 members who voted their conscience (that's why we swear an oath to cover these moments when it's not popular but needed) as enemies, how is that for unity? How does that make us a big tent party?

"Instead what is being demanded is not unity, but surrender. The GOP can have immediate peace in its ranks if it surrenders to the loudest angriest voices."

On the prospect of the party becoming united under Trump, accepting he is "popular in the party," and that potentially leading to an election win down the line, Kinzinger asked "to what end" that would be.

He added: "So the party that forgot it's way and it's centering principles can govern unmoored from its founding values? So we can yell louder and teach the next generation that governing isn't serious, but instead a dark plot in a movie?"

On the purpose of his movement, he said it was to "regain the party that called upon our better angels."

As Kinzinger outlines his visions, he has continued to push back against Trump.

After Trump released a statement urging donations to his own PAC to prevent funds going to "RINOS," what he deems "Republicans in name only," Kinzinger labeled him "a man desperate for relevance but feeling the changing tides."

Kinzinger has faced censures and has also been criticized by his own family over his stances.

Trump named him in his CPAC speech when speaking of "grand-standers" in the party. Naming the Republicans who went against him on impeachment he spoke of his desire to "get rid of them all."

He has also outlined his desire to potentially back primary challengers more aligned with his views.

Newsweek has contacted Kinzinger's office for further comment.

adam kinzinger at house committee foreign affairs
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) questions witnesses during a House Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing looking into the firing of State Department Inspector General Steven Linick, on Capitol Hill on September 16, 2020 in Washington, D.C. He has outlined why he wants to pursue his "Country First movement." Kevin Dietsch/Pool/Getty Images