The coming fight

Published January 26, 2023

By Carter Wrenn

For years, when Republicans fought in a primary, conservative candidates had an edge: Most primary voters were conservative. And, since Independent voters often agreed with conservatives on issues, conservative Republicans were able to go on and win General Elections.

That’s changed.

Today, for many Republican primary voters Trump’s a totem. Conservative, an idea, matters less. Last election, in swing states Trump endorsed candidates in Senate primaries – and every one won. But, in the General Election, only two won. Suddenly, primaries handed Republicans candidates Democrats beat.

Look at Mehmet Oz.

Trump said the election was stolen, Oz nodded to get Trump’s endorsement, won his primary. But after Oz said ‘Amen’ Independents, fed up with Trump’s lies, didn’t trust Oz. He lost.

For years, in North Carolina, no Democrat running for Senate hugged the Democrat running for president because it cost him votes in the General Election.

Now the shoe’s on the other foot – hugging Trump, Republican politicians hand Democrats a gift in General Elections.