Opinion The GOP is paying the price for Trump’s loopy Senate candidates

cigaretteman

HR King
May 29, 2001
72,223
51,900
113
By Jennifer Rubin
Columnist |
August 16, 2022 at 12:13 p.m. EDT

Thanks to defeated former president Donald Trump, Republicans have nominated a host of unqualified, extreme and loopy Senate candidates for the midterms. The party is now paying the price.
The New York Times reports on the latest indication that the party is facing fundraising woes: “The National Republican Senatorial Committee has cut more than $5 million in Pennsylvania, including its reservations in the Philadelphia media market, according to two media-tracking sources.” It also cut more than $2 million in Wisconsin and about $2 million in the biggest media markets in Arizona.
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The candidates in each of these states — Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania, Sen. Ron Johnson in Wisconsin and Blake Masters in Arizona — are all Trump favorites. Johnson seems to have never met a MAGA conspiracy theory he didn’t like. Masters is a flat-out election denier and crank. Oz, a millionaire known for hawking snake-oil medical cures, unsurprisingly turned out to be a rotten candidate who has been mocked as a carpetbagger for his ties to New Jersey.
Republicans have yet to cut spending for other weak candidates. In Ohio, for example, the party continues to boost J.D. Vance even though his campaign is struggling (Vance’s recent suggestion that women in violent marriages should not seek a divorce certainly did not help). Republicans also haven’t diverted funds from Herschel Walker in Georgia, although he might be one of the worst Senate candidates this cycle, thanks to a his nonstop stream of fabrications, cringe-inducing incoherence and radical positions, such as his support for a nationwide abortion ban without any exceptions.


Some of these candidates might still prevail, given the demographic and partisan balance of their states. But Senate races — and other statewide races, such as for governor, attorney general and secretary of state — pose key tests for the MAGA-conquered GOP, since Trump’s blend of delusion and narcissism might not work outside the right-wing media bubble and deep-red states.
That’s a problem in the swing states of Arizona, Michigan and Nevada, where a bunch of election deniers are running. Sure, Trump’s lap dogs may be able to win in low-turnout primaries and in heavily gerrymandered districts. But general elections with healthy turnout could be Trump’s Achilles’ heel. Perhaps that explains why the GOP is attempting to reduce turnout and stack the offices of state election administrators with MAGA cultists. It’s tough for the party to win when democracy is thriving.
Not coincidentally, as Republicans are cutting advertising in states with MAGA election deniers, the nonprofit arm of the Republican Accountability Project (RAP) is launching a $10 million ad buy in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin seeking to peel traditional Republicans away from Trump acolytes. The group’s ads use clips of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) during the House Jan. 6 select committee’s hearings and testimonials from Republicans disgusted with the MAGA crowd’s disrespect for the rule of law.
Where Republicans sense they might be wasting money on losers, RAP is putting its foot on the gas. Both sides seem to agree which candidates are the GOP’s weakest links.
Just as Trump’s obsession with the “big lie” of a stolen election arguably cost Republicans two critical Senate seats in Georgia, it would be fitting if Trump’s MAGA endorsements once more kept Sen. Mitch McConnell from regaining the majority leader title. The Kentucky Republican’s inability to break with Trump once and for all (e.g., refusing to vote to remove Trump during his impeachment trials, helping block a bipartisan Jan. 6 commission, declining to condemn Trump’s retention of highly classified documents) might deprive McConnell of the thing he craves most: power.
For the GOP as a whole, underwhelming performances in statewide races by handpicked Trump candidates would be a clear signal that Trumpism remains a minority faction dependent on antidemocratic rules (e.g., gerrymandering, the filibuster). There’s no certainty such results in November would impair Trump’s chances of winning the nomination in 2024, given Republicans’ fidelity to the former president over democracy and truth. But it would mean that refusing to cut Trump loose is a recipe for perpetual minority status.

 

billanole

HR Legend
Mar 5, 2005
12,157
13,236
113
By Jennifer Rubin
Columnist |
August 16, 2022 at 12:13 p.m. EDT

Thanks to defeated former president Donald Trump, Republicans have nominated a host of unqualified, extreme and loopy Senate candidates for the midterms. The party is now paying the price.
The New York Times reports on the latest indication that the party is facing fundraising woes: “The National Republican Senatorial Committee has cut more than $5 million in Pennsylvania, including its reservations in the Philadelphia media market, according to two media-tracking sources.” It also cut more than $2 million in Wisconsin and about $2 million in the biggest media markets in Arizona.
Sign up for a weekly roundup of thought-provoking ideas and debates
The candidates in each of these states — Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania, Sen. Ron Johnson in Wisconsin and Blake Masters in Arizona — are all Trump favorites. Johnson seems to have never met a MAGA conspiracy theory he didn’t like. Masters is a flat-out election denier and crank. Oz, a millionaire known for hawking snake-oil medical cures, unsurprisingly turned out to be a rotten candidate who has been mocked as a carpetbagger for his ties to New Jersey.
Republicans have yet to cut spending for other weak candidates. In Ohio, for example, the party continues to boost J.D. Vance even though his campaign is struggling (Vance’s recent suggestion that women in violent marriages should not seek a divorce certainly did not help). Republicans also haven’t diverted funds from Herschel Walker in Georgia, although he might be one of the worst Senate candidates this cycle, thanks to a his nonstop stream of fabrications, cringe-inducing incoherence and radical positions, such as his support for a nationwide abortion ban without any exceptions.


Some of these candidates might still prevail, given the demographic and partisan balance of their states. But Senate races — and other statewide races, such as for governor, attorney general and secretary of state — pose key tests for the MAGA-conquered GOP, since Trump’s blend of delusion and narcissism might not work outside the right-wing media bubble and deep-red states.
That’s a problem in the swing states of Arizona, Michigan and Nevada, where a bunch of election deniers are running. Sure, Trump’s lap dogs may be able to win in low-turnout primaries and in heavily gerrymandered districts. But general elections with healthy turnout could be Trump’s Achilles’ heel. Perhaps that explains why the GOP is attempting to reduce turnout and stack the offices of state election administrators with MAGA cultists. It’s tough for the party to win when democracy is thriving.
Not coincidentally, as Republicans are cutting advertising in states with MAGA election deniers, the nonprofit arm of the Republican Accountability Project (RAP) is launching a $10 million ad buy in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin seeking to peel traditional Republicans away from Trump acolytes. The group’s ads use clips of Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) during the House Jan. 6 select committee’s hearings and testimonials from Republicans disgusted with the MAGA crowd’s disrespect for the rule of law.
Where Republicans sense they might be wasting money on losers, RAP is putting its foot on the gas. Both sides seem to agree which candidates are the GOP’s weakest links.
Just as Trump’s obsession with the “big lie” of a stolen election arguably cost Republicans two critical Senate seats in Georgia, it would be fitting if Trump’s MAGA endorsements once more kept Sen. Mitch McConnell from regaining the majority leader title. The Kentucky Republican’s inability to break with Trump once and for all (e.g., refusing to vote to remove Trump during his impeachment trials, helping block a bipartisan Jan. 6 commission, declining to condemn Trump’s retention of highly classified documents) might deprive McConnell of the thing he craves most: power.
For the GOP as a whole, underwhelming performances in statewide races by handpicked Trump candidates would be a clear signal that Trumpism remains a minority faction dependent on antidemocratic rules (e.g., gerrymandering, the filibuster). There’s no certainty such results in November would impair Trump’s chances of winning the nomination in 2024, given Republicans’ fidelity to the former president over democracy and truth. But it would mean that refusing to cut Trump loose is a recipe for perpetual minority status.

So swings the pendulum.
His time wanes…
 
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LuteHawk

HR Legend
Nov 30, 2011
28,282
18,757
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Dr. Oz in Pennsylvania and H. Walker in Georgia are not
going to win. They are inept candidates who never had
a clue about what it takes to be a competent U.S. Senator.
Trump's endorsement of them has become a kiss of death.

Bottom Line: Republicans will not have a majority in the
Senate because they had laughable candidates. Quack
doctors and ex-football players are not needed in our
nation's capital.
 

billanole

HR Legend
Mar 5, 2005
12,157
13,236
113
Dr. Oz in Pennsylvania and H. Walker in Georgia are not
going to win. They are inept candidates who never had
a clue about what it takes to be a competent U.S. Senator.
Trump's endorsement of them has become a kiss of death.

Bottom Line: Republicans will not have a majority in the
Senate because they had laughable candidates. Quack
doctors and ex-football players are not needed in our
nation's capital.
Lute for the win.
 
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Reactions: cigaretteman