Buckeye Brawl: Special Republican Rally Rumble Edition
April 23, 2022
April 22, 2022
Happy Friday, and welcome to “Buckeye Brawl,” a weekly newsletter from the Ohio Democratic Party highlighting the nasty, chaotic and expensive Republican primary for Senate. This out-of-control primary is making conservatives “deeply worried” about the prospects of Republicans losing this seat.
As the Republican Senate primary continues to sink lower and lower, these GOP candidates are injecting even more nasty personal attacks, more chaos and more money into this race. We’re here to help you keep track of all of it.
‘’Go f**k yourself’: Trump and Don Jr. war with top GOP donor who bought ads opposing his candidate” –Salon headline, 4/22/22
There was a lot of chaos this week, so here’s what you may have missed:
TOTAL WAR. Since Trump’s endorsement, Don Jr. has adopted J.D. Vance’s feuds as his own. At a candidate forum last year, Vance called the pro-Mandel Club For Growth the “Club for Chinese Growth” after the group spent heavily airing Vance’s anti-Trump comments. Now that Trump has endorsed Vance, Trump expected Club for Growth to fall in line. Club for Growth didn’t do any such thing – instead they doubled down on their support for Mandel, and began re-airing the ad Trump asked them to take off the air last year. A spokesperson for the group said they were increasing their buy against Vance. Trump responded, having his assistant text David McIntosh, the president of Club, telling him to “go f**k yourself.” According to a source, Don Jr. then threatened McIntosh, saying he is considering opposing all candidates newly endorsed by the Club for Growth unless they pull the anti-Vance ads and remove McIntosh from the board. It all starts in Ohio, but the nasty infighting here could have nationwide consequences. A Vance ally summed it up nicely: “It’s total war.”
BETRAYAL. The fallout doesn’t stop there, though. Half of the 2016 Trump RNC delegates from Ohio wrote a letter to Trump asking him to reconsider his endorsement of J.D. Vance, warning, “JD Vance has not developed relationships with Republican voters and grassroots leaders that are crucial to win. This endorsement of JD Vance is a betrayal to not only your Ohio supporters but Trump supporters across our great nation!” According to Fox News, the letter is signed by 33 of the total 66 delegates that were designated to represent Trump at the 2016 RNC if he won the Ohio primary. Hard to unite the party when half of your national delegates are jumping ship before the primary!
RILED UP. The other candidates responded to Trump’s endorsement of Vance – and it has not gone well. Weathervane Jane Timken said, “It has riled up the base. They are not happy. My voters are sticking with me.” Mike Gibbons told NBC News’ Vaughn Hillyard that he thinks Trump made a mistake and that “I don’t think JD is qualified as a conservative.” At a campaign event yesterday with insurrectionist Michael Flynn, Josh Mandel mentioned “never Trumpers” in the Republican Party while avoiding mentioning any of his opponents by name. Then someone in the crowd yelled Vance’s name and Mandel felt compelled to repeat it – attacking J.D. Vance as a Never Trumper. It’s hard to put down the knives when you’ve been using them for so long!
Thanks for reading along – that’s all for the Buckeye Brawl this week. If you have questions, my email is [email protected]. Have a great weekend!