This is Greg Brannon’s moment. The reactionary oddball maintains good standing with the GOP base. Meanwhile, Tillis’s gaffes give him a straight shot at the nomination.
A few weeks ago, the pundits declared Brannon’s campaign over. PPP says otherwise. Jensen’s new poll shows Brannon improving since last month. Even the area code that slapped him prefers him to Tillis by 2-1. Personal responsibility does not in fact matter to Tea Partiers, as long as you tell poor people to screw themselves.
If Brannon was careless with his ethics, Tillis was careless with his words. And it mattered. He praised the A.C.A., which is like telling Focus on Family you worship the Devil, and suffered political damnation. Despite a bunch of flattering ads, he lost his lead. Now he’s tied–with Brannon.
Brannon’s main obstacle at this point is name recognition. Two-thirds of voters have never heard of him. Compared to introducing yourself via Obamacare-praise, however, anonymity is a decent problem to have. That’s particularly true when you’ve got time and FreedomWorks on your side. Nab a Ted Cruz endorsement, and Brannon’s off to the races.
If Brannon can’t exploit this opening, the Tea Party will lose much credibility. The Establishment candidate’s opened the door wide. All Brannon and the Far Right have to is walk through.
Alexander Jones is an original contributor to PoliticsNC.