North Carolina GOP's Extremist Nominees Excite Democratic Strategists

North Carolina GOP's Extremist Nominees Excite Democratic Strategists

Michele Morrow

In 2020, Joe Biden narrowly missed capturing North Carolina’s 16 electoral votes, losing the state by a slim 1.4-percentage-point margin. But that was nearly four years ago. Before the Dobbs decision. Before Donald Trump’s 91 felony indictments. And before last week, when the state’s GOP voters nominated a guy who favorably quotes Hitler, has compared LGBTQ+ people to insects and larvae, and thinks a six-week abortion ban isn’t quite extreme enough for governor. Tar Heel State Republicans also nominated another extremist, Michele Morrow, for superintendent of the state’s schools.

Perhaps 10 years ago people would have been floored by these winners. But now? Why should anyone be shocked that Trump’s Republican Party nominated a Trump Republican?

A better question: How might North Carolina’s lurch rightward benefit Biden and other Democrats running in the state? Before we explore how Dems can benefit from extremists, let’s get to know more about Morrow. Here’s CNN:

Michele Morrow, a conservative activist who last week upset the incumbent Superintendent of Public Instruction in North Carolina’s Republican primary, expressed support in 2020 for the televised execution of former President Barack Obama and suggested killing then-President-elect Joe Biden.
In other comments on social media between 2019 and 2021 reviewed by CNN’s KFile, Morrow made disturbing suggestions about executing prominent Democrats for treason, including Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Hillary Clinton, Sen. Chuck Schumer and other prominent people such as Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates.
“I prefer a Pay Per View of him in front of the firing squad,” she wrote in a tweet from May 2020, responding to a user sharing a conspiracy theory who suggested sending Obama to prison at Guantanamo Bay. “I do not want to waste another dime on supporting his life. We could make some money back from televising his death.”

The GOP as a whole should instantly rebuke Morrow for these incendiary takes, but it’s far more likely they’ll become part of the official GOP platform. Assuming they bother to publish one, that is—and assuming it’s not just a four-page list of instructions for sponge-bathing Donald Trump.

It gets worse, believe it or not. In December 2020, Morrow implied that then-President-elect Biden should be killed for suggesting that people might want to wear masks for 100 days to stop a deadly virus from spreading further out of control.

Morrow’s also a homeschooler trying to take the reins of the state’s public school system after having disparaged public schools as “socialism centers” that parents should avoid sending their kids to. Which, come to think of it, is a little like running for president of the world’s foremost liberal democracy in hopes of turning it into an autocratic oligarchy.

Morrow also appears to be a QAnon adherent who once claimed that tens of thousands of Chinese troops were massed at the Canadian and Mexican borders, awaiting the order to invade and install Joe Biden as president.

So the first question—after “Why is this bad news for Joe Biden?” of course—is “Will North Carolina voters notice that the GOP as a whole is now barely distinguishable from Adolf Eichmann Bobblehead Night at the monthly Patriot Front Cockfight and Pancake Breakfast?”

The answer? Well, voters aren’t noticing much of anything this early in the election cycle, but they just might notice this frothy fuckery. Seriously, how can they not?

Indeed, in a recent New York Times story about Biden’s prospects in both Georgia and North Carolina, Democrats appeared sanguine about their chances of flipping the latter from red bonkers to blue.

Prominent Democratic groups are planning to target North Carolina, particularly because of the involvement of Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, the Republican nominee for governor. His inflammatory comments and politically toxic positions stand out even in a party that has put forward many flawed nominees for top offices in recent years.

Among other things, Mr. Robinson has quoted Hitler on Facebook, flirted with Holocaust denial and referred to “transgenderism” and “homosexuality” as “filth.” He has also expressed support for a six-week abortion ban, a stance Democrats have already seized on.

Pat Dennis, the president of American Bridge 21st Century, a liberal group that digs into the histories of Republican candidates, said Mr. Robinson was a “dream” for opposition researchers, adding that candidates like him who hold right-wing views on abortion “really help define the race in the suburbs, which I think is where North Carolina will be won or lost.”

Unfortunately for Republicans, they appear to have learned nothing from their recent stumbles. Extreme MAGA-aligned candidates—notably Herschel Walker in Georgia, Kari Lake in Arizona, and Doug Mastriano in Pennsylvania—clearly hurt Republicans’ chances in 2022. And unless six-week abortion bans, QAnon conspiracy theories, extrajudicial executions of political rivals, blind hatred of public schools, and the wit and wisdom of Adolf Hitler suddenly start trending on Cosmopolitan magazine’s 2024 Hot List, Republicans should face an uphill climb with suburban North Carolina moms in November.

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos

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