Political strategist James Carville insists that there is no moral or ethical problem with Democrats meddling in GOP primaries, as criticism mounts even in left-wing media circles over the tactic.
As the party has decried its opponents for allegedly destroying democratic norms, reports have surfaced that Democrats have been heavily meddling in Republican primaries by funneling millions to candidates they deem too extreme to win general elections.
The tactic seems cynical and hypocritical, especially as the party tries to portray Trump supporters as willing to subvert democracy.
Democrats have spent millions boosting candidates such as Maryland GOP gubernatorial candidate Dan Cox as well as Doug Mastriano, the Pennsylvania GOP candidate for governor.
Both have asserted unproven claims of election fraud in the 2020 presidential race. Democrats have pumped money into other races in a similar fashion as well.
The tactic, however, has the potential to backfire on the Democrats big time, as polling and political headwinds suggest a red wave is coming in the midterm elections.
Democrats are meddling in yet another GOP primary, with a new $425k DCCC ad buy boosting the far-right challenger to Rep. Peter Meijer, one of the 10 House Rs who voted to impeach Trump https://t.co/vDz0DYOBbw
— Lachlan Markay (@lachlan) July 26, 2022
James Carville: No Ethical Issue With Democrats Meddling in Republican Elections
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Despite concerns over the Democrat tactic of meddling in Republican races, legendary Democrat strategist James Carville doesn’t see any issue.
Carville praised House Speaker Nancy Pelosi when she defended the tactic saying, “I love that woman, I just worship her.”
“The political decisions that are made out there are made in furtherance of our winning the election,” Pelosi said, “because we think the contrast between Democrats and Republicans — as they are now — is so drastic that we have to win.”
.@SpeakerPelosi today defended this practice of boosting fringe R’s to help Dems:
“The political decisions that are made out there are made in furtherance of our winning the election.”
“The contrast between Democrats and Republicans … is so drastic that we have to win.” https://t.co/Z69BEGs9NE
— Ben Siegel (@bensiegel) July 29, 2022
CNN’s Jim Acosta asked Carville if the Democrats were “playing with fire” by meddling in Republican elections. He was all for it.
“The idea of a political campaign is to win the election. It acts in its own interest,” Carville replied.
He added, “I’ve done the same thing. I would do the same thing. I don’t see any ethical or moral problem with doing this.”
Not Quite Operation Chaos
The idea isn’t without merit on both sides of the political aisle. The late, great conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh suggested Operation Chaos in 2008, urging Republican voters to switch parties so they could vote in Democrat primaries and throw the campaigns in disarray.
As far as we know, however, the RNC didn’t actually send campaign funds to Democrat candidates.
No, it’s actually not ‘bigger than politics.’ That was pretty clear after the first hearing. https://t.co/ZmdgjngPn2
— Byron York (@ByronYork) July 27, 2022
The mainstream media is fretting over the idea of meddling in Republican primaries due to concerns it might come back to bite the Democrats if so-called “far-right” candidates actually end up winning their general elections.
Washington Post columnist Henry Olsen criticized the Democrat campaign arms by saying the tactic reached a “new level of absurd.”
“If some extreme candidates threaten our democracy, as many Democrats say about some Republicans running in the midterms, such a tactic can be dangerous,” Olsen wrote. “After all, there’s always a possibility that the supposedly unelectable person might win.”
“Why would anyone who genuinely loves democracy take that risk?” he added.
Hint – they don’t genuinely love democracy, they only genuinely love power.
This is as stupid a stunt as can be and likely to backfire . https://t.co/k4yDlV9CZa
— Anurag Shrivastava (@hrnext) July 27, 2022
An ABC News panel similarly ripped the Democrats for being “embarrassingly hypocritical.”
“It’s risky and it’s hypocritical,” USA Today political analyst Susan Page said.
“It’s hypocritical because Democrats have been saying that election deniers threaten our very democracy,” she continued. “So you’re going to go out and in effect campaign for an election denier because you made a political calculation that it might serve your interest.”
Page believes the tactic means Democrats must cede the moral high ground when it comes to election integrity.
Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY), who was also on the ABC panel, said the strategy Democrats are using is “embarrassingly hypocritical.”
Carville, though, insists it’s all just part of the political game.
“I don’t see anything wrong with this,” he told Acosta. “And you try to do everything you can to help your candidate or your party win an election. And that’s pretty simple and that’s what the DCCC is trying to do.”
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