Project Pander: The Secret Republican Plan to Split the Democratic Party
Sure, Sanders voters are quickly moving their support to Hillary now that the primaries are over. But plans are afoot—afoot, I say!—to keep Democrats from uniting around Hillary Clinton.
Even if you’ve become convinced that Clinton herself is not as bad as 30 years of bought-and-paid-for television, radio, and print attacks might suggest, Republicans have a scheme to show you that she’s not for you. And it’s not a basement full of psychics hired from 1-900 lines to plant negative Hillary thoughts in your dreams (okay, it’s not just a basement full of psychics).
It’s …. Project Pander.
In a detailed memo outlining its strategy to combat Clinton’s VP choice, the committee says it will frame the selection as both a cynical play to certain constituencies and as an emotional letdown for voters who backed Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the Democratic primary.
No matter who Clinton picks for veep, the Project Pander team will use that choice to prove that Clinton has back-stabbed, front-stabbed, ignored, or paid too much attention to some faction of Democrats.
The goals, the memo says, are to “drive wedges between these top contenders and either Clinton and/or traditional Democrat constituencies, such as labor, environmentalists, and gun control advocates, and other traditional left-wing constituencies;” and “[w]here applicable, frame the choice as an insult to the large, deep base of Bernie Sanders supporters who are struggling with the notion of supporting Hillary Clinton as the presumptive Democrat nominee.”
She didn’t pick Bernie? Slap in the face to Bernie supporters! She picked Bernie? It’s because she’s in the pocket of gun manufacturers! Kaine’s a career politician. Wait … do Democrats hate those? We think so! Castro is named Castro! Elizabeth Warren is … Elizabeth Warren is … She’s too good and people like her too much!
A Warren choice, the RNC concedes, would go over well with Sanders supporters. But it would be “an extreme lurch left” that the committee would paint as “intensely liberal and uncompromising.” Interestingly, the RNC hints that it would use the selection of Warren as a means of diminishing Clinton, both by playing up Warren as, in some ways, the more powerful of the two and by portraying Clinton as captive to her base.
“We aren’t concerned,” said spokesman Brian Fallon. “While the Democratic party is quickly uniting around Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump actually appears to be losing ground in his bid to consolidate Republicans. More and more members of Trump’s own party are realizing he is temperamentally unfit to be President, and there is no amount of Googling by RNC researchers that can fix that.”
The larger strategy? If it’s Clinton/Warren, they’re too liberal. If it’s Clinton/Kaine, they’re too liberal. If it’s … you get the idea.
Oh, and Republicans who have been railing against Hillary Clinton’s email? You might want to check your own security. These “top secret” papers are blowing all over the place.