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Democrats Will Never Be Able to Live Down This ‘Deeply Cynical’ Campaign Video

Rep. Peter Meijer’s defeat in the Michigan GOP primary Tuesday cast harsh new light on a TV ad Democrats ran about his MAGA challenger in the days before the election.

SO WHAT

Will Democrats ever be able to credibly pose as the party of democracy again?

THE VIDEO

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee paid $425,000 for the ad highlighting John Gibbs’ ties to former President Trump, a backhanded insult apparently meant to help the candidate beat Meijer.


“The Gibbs-Trump agenda is too conservative for West Michigan,” the narrator said at the end of the bad, which cost more than Gibbs’ total fundraising.

  • Gibbs, a businessman and missionary who served in the Trump administration and received the former president’s endorsement, has denied that President Biden was legitimately elected.
  • Democrats see him as easier to beat in November than Meijer, an Army veteran of the Iraq War and one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump over the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

THE REACTION

Democrats have quietly spent millions of dollars in this year’s GOP primaries as part of a national strategy to boost the same MAGA candidates they often say are a threat to democracy.

  • But the takedown of Meijer proved a step too far for some members of the party and the mainstream media.
  • In a letter issued Monday, 35 former Democratic politicians denounced the party’s promotion of “election deniers,” calling the practice “risky and unethical.”
  • “Of course, it could backfire,” Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colo., told Politico last week. “And that’s part of the reason why I don’t think it’s a good idea. Not only do I think it sends the wrong message, but it’s substantively risky.”
  • “Deeply cynical and clearly hypocritical from what Democrats have been putting forth as a message,” CNN political director David Chalian said on air Wednesday.

However, some Democrats have defended the strategy on the grounds that there are essentially no good Republicans.

  • Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., a member of the Jan. 6 committee, recently told Axios he could understood the argument that’s it wrong to “help insurrectionist election deniers.”
  • “But in the real world of politics, one can also see an argument that if the pro-insurrectionist, election-denier wing of the Republican caucus is already dominant, then it might be worth it to take a small risk that another one of those people would be elected, in return for dramatically increasing the chances that Democrats will be able to hold the House against a pro-insurrectionist, election-denying GOP majority,” he said.

THE LAST WORD

Meijer, who has repeatedly slammed Democrats for supporting Gibbs, told Politico last week: “I’m sick and tired of hearing the sanctimonious bullsh*t about the Democrats being the pro-democracy party.”

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