Former Democratic officials criticize ‘destructive’ party spending for pro-Trump Republicans
Nearly three dozen former Democratic officials on Monday called on party outfits to stop writing checks to boost pro-Trump candidates in the Republican primaries, calling the strategy “risky and unethical.”
The 35 former governors, senators and representatives have said they “oppose any practice that intentionally elevates Holocaust deniers.”
“And as members of the Democratic Party, we are appalled by the recent practice of Democratic organizations intervening in Republican primaries to promote candidates who deny the outcome of the last presidential election,” the open letter reads on the website. Issue One.
Democratic political committees and Democratic-aligned nonprofits in five states — California, Colorado, Illinois, Maryland and Pennsylvania — have gobbled up nearly $44 million in primary advertising designed to promote “extreme candidates.” right,” according to Open Secrets.
“These destructive primary tactics are aimed at elevating Republican candidates whom Democrats hope can more easily defeat in November,” the open letter reads. “But it is risky and unethical to promote a candidate whose campaign is based on eroding trust in our elections. We have to stop this practice, and stop today.
Signatories included former Democratic Sens. Carol Moseley Braun of Illinois; Gary Hart, Mark Udall and Tim Wirth of Colorado; Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota.
Former Democratic governors have also signed. James Blanchard of Michigan and Roy Romer of Colorado, as well as former representatives Dick Gephardt of Missouri; Jane Harman from California and Pat Schroeder from Colorado.
Sure, parties have engaged in such political hijackings before, but huge Democratic spending on Republicans who questioned the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential race has raised fears on the left that the tactic could backfire.
“Our democracy is fragile, so we cannot tolerate political parties trying to endorse candidates whose message is to erode our dedication to fair elections,” the Democratic letter said.
The tactic also undermines the Democratic message that former President Donald Trump’s allegations of widespread voter fraud pose an “existential threat” to American democracy.
Rep. Peter Meijer, a Republican from Michigan, one of 10 House Republicans to vote to impeach Trump in 2020, has slammed Democrats for “backing my MAGA challenger,” former Trump official John Gibbs .
“You would think that Democrats would look at John Gibbs and see the embodiment of what they say they fear most. That as patriots they would use every tool at their disposal to defeat him and similar candidates who, pose an existential threat,” Meijer said in a Monday op-ed. “Instead, they’re funding Gibbs.”
Democratic groups involved in promoting GOP candidates include the Senate Majority PAC, House Majority PAC, and Democratic Governors Association Action.
Despite the millions spent, the strategy has a mixed record. It worked in the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race, where Democrats got their preferred state GOP candidate, Sen. Doug Mastriano, but not in California and Colorado.
In Colorado, the Senate Majority PAC spent $4 million to fund the committee promoting GOP state Sen. Ron Hanks in the June 28 primary. That wasn’t enough: Businessman Joe O’Dea, who was backed by the state’s top Republicans, won 54% to 45%.
Even so, PAC Senate Majority Chairman JB Poersch called the group’s strategy a success.
“Our efforts have forced O’Dea to burn cash, kiss Trump and show his true colors as a rubber stamp for Mitch McConnell and a dangerous MAGA agenda that is totally out of step with the voters who will decide the election. general in Colorado,” he told Colorado Politics.
Colorado Republican Party Executive Director Joe Jackson praised the Democratic letter and criticized Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet and Gov. Jared Polis for not speaking out.
“This is a sad day for the Democratic Party when the only Democrats showing leadership are those who served in the 1980s,” Jackson said in a statement Monday. “Michael Bennet and Jared Polis have both shamefully kept silent about this election interference aimed at helping them. I appreciate that Governor Romer and Senator Hart are doing the right thing and showing leadership, I just wish Bennet and Polis would follow their example.