by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
A couple of erstwhile Republican operatives who notably failed to elect Republican presidents are now trying to elect a Democratic one.
They call their super PAC, self-importantly, The Lincoln Project. The operation is devoted to churning out harsh and often ridiculously over-the-top ads attacking President Donald Trump that are invariably praised by the media and progressives on Twitter, who are The Lincoln Project’s political base.
The project’s operatives tend to this constituency with a slavish devotion, catering to its long-standing hatreds and its momentary passions.
They know that without cable-TV mentions and Twitter buzz, The Lincoln Project — which doesn’t spend much on actually broadcasting its much-vaunted ads — would be a complete irrelevance, and so far, they have proven more adept at this game than they did at electing John McCain or Mitt Romney.
It is certainly understandable to be a Republican who’s appalled at Donald Trump and refuses to vote for him. But it’s another thing entirely to go raise millions of dollars from Democratic donors and run ads not just against Trump but against run-of-the-mill Republican senators whose only offense is having an R next to their names.
The Lincoln Project launched with its founders … jointly writing a high-minded New York Times op-ed promising to reach persuadable voters and heal the nation’s wounds.
This was all self-serving tripe, as a glance at the insult-filled Twitter feeds, op-eds, and cable appearances of the principals instantly demonstrates. These people aren’t resisting the coarsened political culture to which Donald Trump has contributed more than his share. No, they are happily embracing it. …
The ads aren’t any better. The Lincoln Project churns them at the pace of the Twitter news cycle, and they are clearly meant to garner retweets rather than to speak to on-the-fence voters.