The Wire

Floundering Republican Elites Lose Control of Party, Ask “What Civil War?”

Ask the elites of the Republican establishment in Washington about the civil war within their party, and you’re likely to be met with feigned bewilderment. Well golly, I’ve got no idea what you’re talking about!

It’s a strategy that has been an almost religiously adhered to by the so-called adult types – the John Boehners and Paul Ryans in Congress, and George Wills and Charles Krauthammers of the punditry class – who are grasping at straws in an effort to keep the party from coming completely unglued.

But now, even the most wide-eyed supporters must now see through this guise of unity. This week House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, who boasts a 95 lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union, was tossed aside for Dave Brat, an unknown ultra-conservative Tea Partier. That’s right, the same Eric Cantor who has been long-considered a young star of the party, known for being a constant thorn in the President’s side for his refusal to compromise his conservative values, was toppled by the Tea Party in the blink of a primary. He became the sitting first majority leader in history to lose a primary since the position was created in 1899. Just hours later, extreme Tea Partier Chris McDaniel, who is running to unseat incumbent conservative Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran in another nasty and drawn out intra-party fight, sent a fundraising email with the subject line “We Just Beat Eric Cantor.”

Now that the Tea Party has killed the narrative of its decline with a single swift victory, what will be their next target? The American people can only await complete and utter government gridlock in the coming months.

See research after the jump.

Rapid ResponseSenate

VIDEO: Watch Mandel Argue with a Video Tape

After grabbing an American Bridge tracker’s camera in an elevator, Josh Mandel has repeatedly attempted to accuse our tracker of initiating contact. The only problem is, witnesses and a video recording of the incident tell a very different story. Despite clear proof to the contrary, Mandel continues to inexplicably lie every chance he gets.

But he can’t shove the truth into a corner.

Rapid ResponseSenate

MEMO: Josh Mandel FBI Investigation

When Josh Mandel became Ohio’s Treasurer barely a year ago, he was entrusted to act as a responsible steward of the state’s funds. Mandel quickly violated that trust by failing to fulfill the responsibilities of his job so he could campaign for a Senate seat instead.

Mandel has also acted irresponsibly by flouting campaign finance rules. Questionable contributions made to his Senate campaign by employees of Suarez Corporation are now under investigation by the FBI. The suspicious nature of the donations was raised by the press to Mandel last year, as it was noted how unusual it was for multiple employees (and their spouses) of the same company, many whom have never before given to federal campaigns, to each make maximum donations to the same candidates. Yet Mandel refused to investigate the donations, and returned them only after the press reported on the existence of an FBI investigation.

And though he has now returned $105,000 in tainted donations, Mandel has yet to come clean. He refuses to identify when he became aware of the FBI investigation, how he learned of the investigation, and how long he waited before returning the donations. This is to say nothing of whether he knew that the contributions were illegal before they were made, and still chose to accept them anyway.

With the FBI investigating these contributions to Mandel’s campaign, Ohio voters are asking the same question: what is Josh Mandel hiding?

View full memo after the jump.


Josh Mandel’s Series Of Unfortunate Events

Despite starting his Senate campaign just weeks after taking office as Ohio’s Treasurer, Josh Mandel is making his campaign “official” at the Akron Press Club today – an event he initially refused to attend because he was “too busy.” The story of his campaign to this point has been nothing but embarrassing; here is a look back at some of his greatest hits:

  • Mandel “Aggressively Worked” Fundraising And Speaking Tours As State Treasurer While Office Schedule Was Neglected. [AP, 1/14/12]
  • Mandel’s First Senate Campaign Flight Occurred Less Than One Month After Taking Office As State Treasurer[AP, 1/14/12]
  • February 2012: Mandel Skipped 14th Consecutive Board Of Deposit Meeting, Still Failed To Attend A Single Meeting Since Taking Office. [Columbus Dispatch, 2/23/12]
  • Mandel Disclosed His Personal Finances 177 Days Late. [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 11/4/11; Mandel Personal Financial Disclosure]
  • Mandel Released Official Schedules, Did Not Include Out-Of-State Fundraising Trips. [Cleveland Plain Dealer, 1/20/12]
  • Mandel Attack On Sherrod Brown Rated “Pants On Fire” By PolitiFact. [PolitiFact Ohio, 11/18/11]