"How is that conservative?"

J.D. Vance—the author and venture capitalist who is likely to join Mandel in Ohio’s U.S. Senate race in the coming weeks—took this sentiment a step further last month when he urged Republicans to retaliate against businesses whose leaders met to coordinate responses to Republican-led efforts to change voting laws in states across the country. “Raise their taxes and do whatever else is necessary to fight these goons. We can have an American Republic or a global oligarchy, and it’s time for choosing,” said Vance, who declined to be interviewed for this story. “At this very moment there are companies (big and small) paying good wages to American workers, investing in their communities, and making it easier for American families. Cut their taxes. No more subsidies to the anti-American business class.” Rep. Peter Meijer, a freshman Republican from Michigan, grew animated when presented with Vance’s comments. “How is that conservative? Where is there a fidelity to an underlying set of beliefs or principles other than just taking cues from the left and being inherently reactive?” he scoffed. “If you’re using the government to compel something you like, you’re setting the precedent for the government to be compelling something you don’t like. And the non-hypocritical approach is to just not have the government be a coercive entity towards those ends.” Mandel also dismissed Vance’s approach, saying it sounded like “a big government liberal solution—not a conservative one.” His plan of attack? Repeal Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. The move would eliminate liability protections for online technology platforms that Mandel believes unfairly censor conservative voices, and, ironically, almost assuredly lead those platforms to dramatically reduce the total amount of speech they allow on their sites. “As a United States Senator, it will be a top priority of mine to work with other constitutional conservatives to be the worst nightmare for the deadwood media and these Big Tech companies,” Mandel said.