Good Friday Morning! And hello from the past. Usually, I write these Thursday evenings and send them out early Friday morning. I’m writing this edition early, on Wednesday, because I’m traveling for work for the rest of this week. I’ll be back in time to crank out a Monday column, but travel and the fact that I won’t have my writing laptop with me prevent any writing during that time.
That shouldn’t impact today’s topic that much because we’re going to discuss a new strategy among Democrats to dump money into Republican primaries. That decision will have ramifications, which we will get into—links to follow.
- Before moving on, I want to share one of my new all-time favorite political stories that happened this past week. In Missouri Republican Primary for US Senate, the race was between former Gov. Eric Greitens and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt. Both were trying to win the primary and secure the endorsement of Donald Trump. The day before the primary, Trump said he would announce his endorsement. After writing a lengthy description of what he wanted in a candidate, Trump said he was endorsing “ERIC.” No last name included. Both Eric Greitens and Eric Schmitt accepted that endorsement. They claimed to have had a great call with Trump thanking him for that endorsement (here’s a link if you doubt anything I just wrote). Schmitt defeated Greitens, so ERIC won.
Where you can find me this week
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[8/1/2022] Nancy Pelosi Should Absolutely Go to Taiwan – Conservative Institute
Democrats meddle in Republican primaries to boost Trump.
There are still votes getting counted as primaries wrap up this week. But the narrative firming up in the media is that “Trump Republicans” won big in these primaries. There’s some truth there. However, that’s not the end of the story.
The Democratic Party, and I mean the actual Democratic Party, not just donors or activists, dumped millions of dollars into Republican primaries to boost Trump-like candidates. This isn’t a conspiracy, it’s in FEC filings, and news outlets have reported on it. Here’s Axios describing specific spending that Democrats made to knock off a Congressman who voted FOR impeaching Trump.
Driving the news: A new TV ad from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee portrays Republican John Gibbs as the true pro-Trump conservative in his effort to unseat Republican Rep. Peter Meijer (R-Mich.) — aligning with Gibbs’ own campaign messaging.
- Trump endorsed Gibbs’ challenge after Meijer voted to impeach the former president over his role in fomenting the Jan. 6 Capitol siege.
- Meijer, a freshman, had been in Congress just days when he took that potentially career-ending vote.
- Now Democrats, who see Gibbs as the more beatable general election opponent, are fueling the Trump-backed effort to oust one of his few remaining GOP critics in next week’s primary.
A DCCC spokesperson told Axios it plans to spend $425,000 to air the ad in the Grand Rapids market beginning Tuesday.
- “Handpicked by Trump to run for Congress, Gibbs called Trump ‘the greatest president’ and worked in Trump’s administration with Ben Carson,” the 30-second spot says.
- “Gibbs has promised to push that same conservative agenda in Congress,” the ad says, specifically noting hardline positions on immigration and education policy.
Remember, this is the same party currently extending the January 6 hearings to declare Republicans are a threat. It’s hard to make that case when you’re boosting these same candidates.
Peter Meijer, the subject of the above Democratic money dump and who lost his primary, wrote this on August 1:
It’s not just my race in Michigan. While claiming the moral high ground, Democrats have been busy rewarding candidates like my opponent across the country:
- Colorado: Democrats have spent $4 million on TV and digital ads to elevate January 6th attendee Ron Hanks over moderate businessman Joe O’Dea in the GOP Senate primary.
- Pennsylvania: Democratic gubernatorial candidate Attorney General Josh Shapiro boosted the election-denying, January 6-attending GOP candidate Doug Mastriano in television ads, spending in one ad double what Mastriano had spent on his own campaign. Mastriano is now the gubernatorial nominee in a swing state.
- Maryland: The Democratic Governors Association spent hundreds of thousands of dollars boosting Dan Cox, who not only attended the rally on January 6 but called Mike Pence a traitor as the violence unfolded.
- Illinois: The Democratic Governors Association dropped $35 million on Super PAC ads targeting moderate Republican mayor of Aurora Richard Irvin and elevating his election-denying, Trump-endorsed opponent, Darren Bailey, who ultimately won the nomination.
Conventional wisdom dictates that these extreme candidates are less electable than the normal Republicans Democrats targeted to defeat. But with a historically unpopular president in Joe Biden and inflation at 40-year highs, less-electable doesn’t mean un-electable. As the January 6 Select Committee continues to warn about the ongoing threat to democracy, their own party dues are paying to help elect the same villains they rail against.
As of July 15, Open Secrets says, “Political groups and nonprofits aligned with the Democratic Party have spent nearly $44 million on advertising campaigns across five states’ Republican primaries to boost the profile of far-right candidates in California, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Maryland.”
This spending is just on the primaries and will end when Democrats shift into the general election. Ironically, the January 6 committee has divided over this strategy, with several big-name Democrats staying mum. Their silence tells the truth; they support this strategy. Democrats want to spend all their time talking about January 6 and Trump, not Joe Biden, inflation, or the economy.
I laughed at a recent CNN headline about this strategy: “‘What happens if they actually do win?’: Democrats grapple with efforts to prop up far right candidates.” The last paragraphs of that story lay bare the hypocrisy of the entire ordeal:
David Turner, strategist for the Democratic Governors Association, said the group is simply “educating the public on the MAGA extremism, and cowardice, of today’s Republican party,” something he argued was “essential to ensuring all citizens have the facts.”
“If this is a fight for the soul of the GOP, Trump is not only winning this battle, he’s unopposed among gubernatorial primary candidates,” Turner said. “It’s time for the GOP to look in the mirror and have a reckoning with itself, instead of trying to find someone else to blame.”
Whether the DCCC effort is successful or not, the winner of the GOP primary in Michigan’s 3rd District will face Hillary Scholten in November, the Democrat who came within six points of beating Meijer in 2020.
Meijer has responded to the spending by alleging hypocrisy among Democrats, saying that that “hypocrisy of it all” is “pretty galling” and “shameless given their high minded rhetoric about how they are the party of democracy.”
“Spare me that bullshit,” he said. “It just shows that nothing is above petty partisan politics, that at the end of the day, all that matters is the letter next to your name.”
We should note a few things about this strategy. First, there is every possibility it backfires. The most prominent example of this was Donald Trump, who progressives in the media fluffed up, the Clintons encouraged, and more, right until Election Day arrived. It’s not a coincidence that Trump got billions of dollars in free advertising during the primaries on mainstream media channels.
Trump rode that wave to the White House. Hilary Clinton lost spectacularly because she’s arguably the worst candidate in history, especially one who has had the frontrunner moniker attached to her name for nearly twenty years. Given the current electoral environment and that Democrats are already panicking in Colorado and Washington, the odds they lose some of these races are very high.
The second point is that this proves, in my mind, the central thesis I made regarding the second Trump impeachment: Democrats did not want a successful impeachment. Democrats don’t want a successful impeachment and likely don’t want Trump to get thrown in jail over anything the J6 committee finds. Anything that removes Trump from the picture is bad.
Here’s what I wrote on January 14, 2021, while watching the Democratic impeachment play out:
…Democrats don’t want the Senate to convict Trump. They’ve purposely hammered this proposal because they only desire Democrats supporting it and no Republicans. Democrats are trying to keep Trump alive and well because they want him torturing Republicans for the next four years and potentially running again in 2024. Trump, with the black mark on him, is politically radioactive. Having Trump around is beneficial to Democrats electorally.
Let’s work backward: Democrats are supporting Trumpian candidates across the country, Democrats have made the January 6 hearings a TV spectacle and a sham, and they purposely kneecapped the second impeachment.
I’m not saying this was a long-standing plan. But there is an overarching strategy. The press is desperate to talk about Donald Trump because they need ratings. Trump is a ratings bonanza, and people lap that content up. Democrats have the same desperation. The Democratic Party and its leadership are looking at 2022 and 2024, thinking they have no other card to play but “TRUMP BAD.”
Their strategy is to use any means possible to put Trump on the ballot. That single strategy explains the impeachment, the J6 hearings, and the midterm plan. In 2024, they’ll do it again. The group that wants Donald Trump to run in 2024 more than anyone else, including Trump’s base, is the Democratic Party.
How’s that for irony?
Get ready for the new headlines: Ron DeSantis, Tom Cotton, Glenn Youngkin, and others are more extreme and worse than Donald Trump. And they’ll say Republicans should vote for Trump over anyone else. That’s coming to a news headline near you. They said it about Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, and they’ll say it again.
Links of the week
The Biden Excuse Machine – Matthew Continetti, Commentary Magazine
Higher ed unites against Asian students in Supreme Court’s Harvard discrimination case – William A. Jacobson and Johanna E. Markind, NYPost
Dems ready to gamble their domestic agenda on Sinema: She’s unlikely to say anything in public about her party’s $700 billion-plus energy, tax and health care bill — until it comes to the floor. – Politico
American lab says its contract with Wuhan Institute of Virology may have violated the law – Emily Kopp, US Right to Know
The Most Important Sector in the Universe – Marc Rubinstein, Epsilon Theory
The ‘pro-democracy’ press push isn’t about democracy — it’s about justifying liberal bias – Timothy P. Carney, The Washington Examiner
Indiana GOP Rep. Walorski, three others die in auto accident: The fatal Wednesday crash also killed the congresswoman’s aide Emma Thomson and two others, according to the sheriff’s office in Elkhart County, Ind. – Politico
Did Biden Just Boost U.S. Tech — or Fund a Bunch of Solyndras? Biden is touting a massive bill to subsidize computer chip manufacturing in the U.S. But the history of similar government interventions is spotty. – Politico
Twitter Thread(s) of the week
Satire of the week
Why We Really Need to Do Something About Inflation Now That I Can See the Effects in My Own Life: Now that I’ve begun to notice the effects in my own daily life, one thing is perfectly clear: It’s a serious problem and we really need to do something about it. – Reductress
Thanks for reading!