Skip to content

Link Copied

Democrats Keeps Running Ads for MAGA Republicans They Say Are a Threat to Democracy

Democrats paid generously to hype MAGA Republicans ahead of several recent primary elections, apparently believing the candidates would be relatively easy to beat in November.

SO WHAT

The Democrats are playing a cynical game that could backfire on them bigly.

WHAT HAPPENED

During the primary races in California, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Democrats bought advertisements likening three GOP candidates to former President Trump.

1. DOUG MASTRIANO: Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, the Democratic nominee for governor, ran a TV spot calling the Republican contender “one of Trump’s strongest supporters.”

THE OUTCOME: Mastriano ended up besting his more establishment opponents in the May 17 primary, three days after Trump endorsed him.

  • Shapiro later released a statement saying: “Republicans just nominated a dangerous extremist who wants to take away our freedoms.”

2. CHRIS MATHYS: In California’s 21st congressional district, the House Majority PAC paid for TV and social media ads calling Mathys “THE Pro-Trump Republican.”

  • The ads also dinged the Republican incumbent, Rep. David Valadao — who voted with the House Democrats to impeach Trump over the Jan. 6 Capitol attack — as a “Republican In Name Only.”
  • One of the TV spots cost $110,919, twice as much as Mathys, a former Fresno city councillor, managed to raise from donors.

THE OUTCOME: Mathys finished third in the jungle primarily, failing to qualify for the runoff between first-place Democratic candidate Rudy Salas and runner-up Valadao.

3. FRANK PALLOTTA: Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J., sent out mailers calling Pallotta “too much like Trump.”

  • The mailers featured a quote from Trump’s 2020 endorsement of Pallotta for the same seat, though Trump did not endorse anyone in the race this cycle.

THE OUTCOME: Pallota secured the GOP nomination on June 7.

WHAT WERE THEY THINKING

Democrats’ willingness to role the dice boosting ‘s MAGA Republicans would seem to bely the party’s urgent warnings, including in the ongoing Jan. 6 committee hearings, that Trump and his GOP allies pose an existential threat to American democracy.

  • Although neither Mastriano or Pallota was favored to win their general elections, the Pennsylvania governor’s race in particular has looked close during a promising year for Republicans.

FLASHBACK: In the 2016 presidential election, Democrat Hillary Clinton was eager to face-off against Trump, seeing him as the weakest potential GOP nominee.

  • One leaked campaign email advised: “We need to be elevating the Pied Piper candidates so that they are leaders of the pack and tell the press to [take] them seriously.”

THE 4PM: A HIGHLIGHT REEL OF TODAY’S NEWS. FOR CONSERVATIVES. EVERY AFTERNOON AT 4PM.