Our book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. Among other things, it discusses the state of the parties. The state of the GOP is not good.
Far-right candidates are surging in House races across the map: Republican leaders increasingly fear that a red wave will wash in a raft of conspiracy theorists and extremists.
Why it matters: The establishment grows ever weaker. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy — on the doorstep of the speaker’s office — can expect to be saddled with new members who have zero loyalty or predictability.
What's happening: Many of the GOP candidates expected to cause leadership headaches are backed by former President Trump, whose grip on McCarthy is as strong as ever.
What we're hearing: In cycles past, leadership has attempted to get involved in some races to stiff-arm candidates they find problematic.
- They play well with Trump's MAGA base and are running in incredibly conservative districts.
- Several, like Loren Culp and Joe Kent in Washington, have made no secret of their disdain for McCarthy and GOP leadership overall.
- But this time, House GOP leadership is highly sensitive to the political downsides of interfering: Republicans need these candidates to take back the majority and make McCarthy speaker.
- McCarthy has been careful not to alienate them, hoping his hands-off approach will help earn their trust and foster goodwill down the line.
Elise Stefanik of New York, the No. 3 Republican in the House, rankled fellow House GOP leaders when she backed a New York congressional candidate with a history of racist and other controversial remarks, two sources said.Stefanik endorsed Carl Paladino, a Buffalo developer, this month without consulting other members of a leadership team that includes Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California and Minority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana, said a House GOP leadership aide who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment publicly about the matter.A House Republican familiar with GOP leadership's frustration with Stefanik, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, called her endorsement of Paladino “baffling” and “off-putting.”Paladino made headlines in recent weeks for suggesting on Facebook that recent mass shootings were "false flag" operations and for an interview last year in which he said Adolf Hitler was the "kind of leader we need today," with news articles pointing out his connection to Stefanik, the chair of the House Republican Conference. The sources said the appearance of a connection between Paladino and House leadership frustrated fellow top Republicans.“When you’re in that No. 3 position, when you’re in leadership, anything you say is something that’s going to be interpreted as on behalf of the team,” the House leadership aide said, adding: “This is the reason we got rid of Liz Cheney. And now Elise is doing the same thing.”
Rep. Mary Miller, who once quoted Hitler at a conservative rally, claims she misspoke when she called the Supreme Court's dismantling of Roe v. Wade a "victory for white life." (via @MaddowBlog) https://t.co/09Y3DNJUAp— MSNBC (@MSNBC) June 27, 2022
NEW: Yesli Vega, the Republican nominee running against Democrat Abigail Spanberger for Congress downplayed the possibility of becoming pregnant as a result of rape when asked about her abortion stance last month, according to audio obtained by Axios. https://t.co/J3pcsQcpkH— Axios (@axios) June 27, 2022