In the final primary contests before the November midterms, the Democratic Party once again spent millions of dollars to help fascistic Trump acolytes and “stolen election” liars defeat more moderate Republican opponents and advance to the general election.
The final three primaries were held Tuesday in New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Delaware. Attention was focused on New Hampshire, where the state’s two House seats and one of its Senate seats, currently held by Democrats, are considered vulnerable. In the narrowly divided House of Representatives, the Republicans need to pick up only five seats to win the majority.
The Senate is currently split 50/50, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting a tie-breaking vote. It will take only one seat changing hands there to tip the balance to the Republicans.
Trump did not endorse any of the Republican primary candidates in the three states’ races, unlike earlier contests in states such as Pennsylvania, Maryland, Michigan, Illinois, Arizona, Ohio, Washington, Wyoming, Nevada and West Virginia, where Trump-endorsed candidates were victorious. Trump-endorsed candidates lost their primaries in Georgia, Alaska and Wisconsin.
However, in New Hampshire, Republicans who ran as full-bore MAGA Republicans and promoters of the lie that Biden’s election was the result of massive vote fraud defeated more moderate candidates who were backed by Republican Governor Chris Sununu, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell or House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
In at least two of three critical races, the most fascistic Republicans benefited from TV ads paid for by Democratic political actions committees or other Democratic campaign groups.
The most intensely watched contest was for the US Senate nomination. Donald Bolduc, a retired Army brigadier general, narrowly defeated Chuck Morse, the president of the New Hampshire State Senate. Bolduc, who ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for US Senate in 2020, has called Sununu a “Chinese Communist sympathizer,” called for abolishing the FBI following the document search at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago compound, and advocated shutting down the Education Department.
Bolduc served 10 tours in Afghanistan and was a Special Operations commander in charge of a “village stability” program. He was diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.
He was well ahead of Morse in the polls until Sununu endorsed Morse last Thursday and stepped up his attacks on Bolduc, saying he was “not a serious candidate” and a “conspiracy theorist.”
The White Mountain PAC, which is linked to McConnell, spent millions on ads to promote Morse, considering him a stronger challenger to the incumbent Democratic Senator, Maggie Hassan. She won her race in 2016 by only one point, and has positioned herself on the right wing of the Democratic Senate caucus, vocally opposing Biden’s order, subsequently quashed, to lift the Title 42 ban on asylum seekers first imposed by Trump.
The White Mountain ad sought to attack Bolduc from the right, stating: “Bolduc lost his first race. He accused President Trump’s team of election-rigging [in his 2020 Senate primary defeat] and said no person of honor could work for Trump. Bolduc endorsed Joe Biden’s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan and said the US should team up with the Taliban.”
In the battle of campaign ads, the Senate Majority PAC, a group aligned with Democratic Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, spent $3.2 million on ads calling Morse “another sleazy politician” propped up by “Mitch McConnell’s Washington establishment.”
In the race for the House of Representatives 1st Congressional District nomination, Karoline Leavitt, a 25-year-old assistant in Trump’s White House press office, defeated Matt Mowers, another former Trump administration aide. Leavitt ran as an “America First” insurgent against the Washington establishment. She is a full-throated election denier. Mowers talks of vote count “irregularities” but stops short of saying the election was stolen.
Mowers was backed by McCarthy, while Leavitt was supported by Rep. Elise Stefanik, the House Republican Conference chair.
Leavitt will face Democratic incumbent Chris Pappas, who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary, in the November general election.
In the 2nd Congressional District Republican primary race, Robert Burns, a far-right local businessman, defeated the better-funded, more establishment George Hansel, the mayor of Keene. Burns campaigned on anti-China protectionism and opposition to gun control, pandemic restrictions and the alleged teaching of critical race theory. Burns acknowledges that Biden won the 2020 election, but claims that “tons” of “other elections” were rigged. Hansel, who supports abortion rights, was endorsed by Sununu.
Burns will face Democratic incumbent Annie Kuster, who is seeking a sixth term in the House. Kuster is saying the central issue in November is abortion rights. Burns supports a national ban on abortion but says it is not practicable and is pushing for a fetal heartbeat bill, which would allow abortions up to 12 weeks.
Kuster’s talk, and that of the Democratic Party as a whole, of defending abortion rights—and democratic rights more generally—is belied by the fact a group called Democrats Serve plowed $100,000 into ads designed to boost Burns’ campaign, far more than Burns was able to spend on his own campaign, and defeat a more moderate Republican who opposes further restrictions on abortions.
While Biden and the Democratic leadership as a whole either tacitly or openly support the policy of boosting fascistic Trump Republicans against more moderate candidates in the Republican primaries, scattered voices in the party establishment are denouncing it as a disastrous policy that plays into the hands of Trump.
Former Indiana congressman Tim Roemer, who headed up a letter from former Democratic lawmakers criticizing the party for using the tactic, said: “This is a deeply, deeply precarious and dangerous strategy to deploy. It risks elevating these liars and giving them a platform for another three or four months—even if they end up getting beat—to drumbeat their message into the electorate and further erode trust.”
In fact, it thoroughly exposes the fraud of the Democrats’ claims to be defenders of democratic rights and the Constitution against the openly fascist politics of the Republican Party under Trump.
The Washington Post reported on Tuesday that the Democratic Party has spent $53 million in Republican primaries this year. It has intervened in nine states and at least 13 primaries to boost the most far-right MAGA candidates, many of them Trump-endorsed. These include criminals such as Republican gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, who were present at the White House and the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and personally participated in the events that culminated in the attack on Congress.
The Democratic Party long ago abandoned any commitment to the defense of democratic rights. It is a party of war and austerity, no less subservient to the American corporate oligarchy than the Republicans. Its overriding concern is suppressing the growth of working class resistance at home and establishing a modus vivendi with a section of its “Republican colleagues” so as to pursue its agenda of escalating war against Russia and military provocations against China in pursuit of American imperialist global hegemony.
On Wednesday, the Post reported on a Brookings Institution study of this year’s primary elections by Elaine Kamarck, a veteran of the Clinton administration who teaches at Harvard. It showed that only 28 percent of Democratic candidates approvingly used left-wing phrases on their websites or received endorsements from either Bernie Sanders, a member of the Squad of “left” members of the House of Representatives, or left-wing groups. By contrast, 41 percent of Republican candidates approvingly mentioned Trump, MAGA or “America first,” or posted a Trump endorsement or Trump photo on their websites.
The so-called “lefts” and “progressives” within the Democratic Party—who are, in reality neither, but rather pro-war and pro-capitalist—have been completely marginalized. The results of the primaries—nearly 20 months after January 6—demonstrate that the Republican Party is being transformed rapidly into a fascist organization and the Democratic Party is lurching ever further to the right.
The defense of democratic rights proceeds entirely through the mass, independent and revolutionary struggle of the working class in opposition to the capitalist system.