Mitch McConnell’s top strategist, Josh Holmes, said that Trump’s attacks on the Mueller investigation are part of a Republican midterm election strategy to get out their voters in November.
According to McClatchy’s Beyond The Bubble podcast:
“Everybody thinks that President Trump is some kind of drag on the Republican Party, [when] in this case, he’s just the essential ingredient,” said Holmes, who’s helped engineer his party’s Senate strategy for the past 16 years as a chief aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
“What the president is doing by continuing to discuss the investigation [into allegations of collusion between his campaign and Russia] and the quote-unquote ‘witch hunt,’ particularly on prime time Fox [News], is doing more to mobilize base voters than any legislative issue we’ve seen,” added Holmes.
Treason As An Election Strategy
Republicans are planning on using Trump’s attacks on the American intelligence community as a motivating factor get Republicans to turn on their own country and come out and vote in November. The hope that Republicans will be excited by the attacks on Mueller and flood the polls are ignoring some very basic fundamentals of this election. Midterm election turnout is lower than presidential election turnout. Trump’s base is about 32%-38% of the electorate. With Democratic enthusiasm being motivated by the Mueller investigation and other issues, the Trump base is outnumbered.
This outcome has been visible in both special elections and the 2017 election, where Democrats have been able to cut into Trump victory margins in red states and districts by 20% or more. The data doesn’t back up what Holmes is suggesting will happen on Election Day. Trump’s popularity is declining in red states and districts, especially in parts of the Midwest.
When a party has no issues to run on, and a president who is a total liability, strategists try to make lemonade out of lemons by embracing things like Trump’s attack on his own country as a positive.
Republicans are going to run on a pro-Russia/anti-Mueller treason platform, as with each passing day the complicity of Mitch McConnell in the Russia conspiracy becomes more obvious.
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Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association