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I was going over this article and I found the structure of this sentence interesting:

Mr Trump will never forgive those whom, like Mitch McConnell, the Senate leader, he judges to have failed him by acknowledging Mr Biden’s election victory. Having begun to move against him, they should finish the job.

Is this proper english? It would be good news to me because I always find it awkward when I interrupt my sentence with a long fyi statement, then proceed to continue the original thought without somehow being able to reconnect or reset the original statement (I'm not even sure what that style is called).

So here are my questions:

  1. What is this type of writing called (the structure etc)?
  2. Can I see more examples of this sentence structure where the pronoun is written twice?
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    Where's the second instance of "he" you're referring to? Note that "he" can't be dropped (I'm referring to the grammar, not the politics, of course).
    – Lawrence
    Jan 15, 2021 at 6:47
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    Yes, it's "proper English."
    – Ricky
    Jan 15, 2021 at 7:04
  • @Lawrence I didn't mean to say that the sentence used "he" twice, it's more the fact the sentence first used "Mr Trump" then used "he" to refer to Mr Trump again in the same sentence. I found that structure very unusual but also very clear and useful. I would like to use the same structure in my own sentences but first I would like to understand the structure better.
    – abbood
    Jan 15, 2021 at 9:59
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    It might help to simplify the sentence to Mr. Trump will never forgive those whom he judges to have failed him. Probably, your confusion arises from the combination of two non-essential phrases (like Mitch McConnell and the senate leader) being side by side. Jan 15, 2021 at 15:02

1 Answer 1

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Let's simplify the sentence so that you can see that both "Mr Trump" and "he" must be there:

[Mr Trump will never forgive those](A) [whom (...) he judges to have failed him](B).

You have (A), the main clause whose subject is Mr Trump and then you have (B), the relative clause modifying the pronoun those, whose subject is he.

You cannot say "I know those whom love", a subordinate clause needs a subject. You need to say: "I know those whom I love".

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  • Very nicely said. I really appreciate this.
    – abbood
    Jan 17, 2021 at 5:30

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