Democrats can’t have it both ways about the threat of GOP extremism

This should stop. The hypocrisy is painfully obvious: How can Democrats portray Trumpism as a danger to democracy while backing its proponents’ campaigns?

Worse than unprincipled, the strategy is reckless. The premise is that Democrats face a tough midterm political environment but their chances improve against low-quality — i.e., extreme and inexperienced — Republican opponents. Ergo, in Colorado, pro-Democratic groups are spending $2 million in support of Ron Hanks, a Jan. 6 rally participant, who is running against businessman Joe O’Dea, a more mainstream figure who would be harder for Sen. Michael F. Bennet to beat — to cite one example from Linskey’s article.

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The historical precedent is the 2012 Senate race in Missouri. Then-Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) openly backed an unelectable right-winger, Todd Akin, for the GOP nomination to run against her. It worked: He beat his Republican opponents and then she beat him.

The risk, of course, is that this is not a relatively ordinary political year — like 2012 — but one in which a true wave election sweeps all of a party’s candidates into office, regardless of their individual attributes.

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