I’m having more fun watching the GOP reject their own candidates. Down in Hoke County, they’ve had to condemn the GOP nominee for state house because he’s an unrepentant racist who beat another Republican in the May primary. In judicial races that Republicans in the legislature tried to rig, the GOP’s chosen candidates face challenges from other GOP candidates who the party condemns. It’s especially funny since a group of GOP operatives tried and failed to recruit Democrats to run in the winner-take-all elections to dilute the Democratic vote.
In May, Russell Walker campaigned on a blatantly racist platform. Walker’s website photo is one of him with a white donkey titled, “My little white ass and me.” The Hoke County paper had a photo of him holding a sign that read, “What is wrong with being racist?” Still, the pro-gun group Grassroots North Carolina, a part of the Republican coalition, endorsed him.
Now, the GOP is scrambling to disavow Walker. The state party pulled their support and local officials say Walker’s views don’t reflect those of Republicans in the area. That may be true for some Republicans, but Walker’s views are certainly in line with other Republicans in the South. And the GOP routinely supports policies that negatively impact minorities. Voter suppression laws, harsh immigration policies like separating families and kicking immigrants out of the armed services are the mainstream GOP policies that attract Walker and his ilk. Until the GOP decides to reject such policies, they’ll be running away from the Russell Walkers and Roy Moore’s of world.
In the judicial races, Republicans scrapped primaries and made the general election a winner-take-all affair. They tried to recruit multiple Democrats into top races to split the vote, but that didn’t work out so well. Instead, multiple Republicans filed, giving Democrats the advantage in several races.
The GOP is condemning a candidate, Chris Anglin, who messed up their plans for taking over the judiciary. In the Supreme Court race, two Republicans filed but only one is endorsed by the state party. Party leaders described Anglin as the enemy. Anglin calls himself a “constitutional conservative.” With only one Democrat in the race in what will almost certainly be a low information race, Anglin could split the GOP vote.
Finally, my buddy and former roommate Walter Rand, who has long wanted to be a judge, beat the Republicans at their own game. With two Democrats in the race and only one Republican, Walter found another Republican who wanted to run and paid his filing fee. As Walter said, he’s leveling the playing field. The Wake County Republican Party chair called it the “sleaziest, most underhanded and outrageous thing.” Clearly, he needs to spend a little more time reading about politics and watching the GOP run the General Assembly.
Thomas Mills is the founder and publisher of PoliticsNC.com. Before beginning PoliticsNC, Thomas spent twenty years as a political and public affairs consultant. Learn more >