The Republican Party far-right swing over the past few years is unmistakable. His last standard bearer has a coup attempt at the US Capitol, and almost the entire party celebrates the Supreme Court’s roll back of the constitutional right to abortion.
As the party has grown more hostile to democracy itself, it has attracted a string of outspoken extremists to its ranks: GOP candidates who not only support what happened on January 6, but suggest that another uprising may come. They openly engage in wild conspiracies and racist attacks, and are not afraid to publicly join white nationalist and other extremist groups.
And while they, like the births before them, may finally hold power over the party, one thing is clear after Tuesday’s primary election: They had a pretty bad night.
Right-wing newcomers in several Republican primary elections have been defeated across the country, though most far-right incumbents, such as Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.), Claimed victories.
At the vote in several states Tuesday – including Colorado, Illinois, Oklahoma, Utah and Mississippi – were candidates trying to oust fellow Republicans they considered too moderate, or RINOs (Republicans In Name Only). These challengers have portrayed themselves as more loyal servants of former President Donald Trump, embracing his false claim that the 2020 election was stolen and voicing far-right positions on abortion, elections and COVID-19.
It was a losing strategy in Colorado, where a trio of candidates, everyone who pushed the “Big Lie” about the 2020 election lost their races.
‘Greg Lopez – a former mayor who thinks all abortions should be illegal, even in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is in danger – has lost his bid to be the Republican nominee for governor by 8 points to’ a more moderate candidate.
Mesa County clerk Tina Peters, a pro-Trump fanatic currently facing a string of charges for tampering with voice machines, lost her race to be Colorado’s next Secretary of State.
And the U.S. Rep. Ron Hanks (R-Colo.), Who rallied with Trump supporters on Jan. 6 and falsely blamed the ensuing violence on crisis actors, was defeat with 9 points in the U.S. Senate’s primary.
Far-right insurgents in Utah have experienced similar problems.
Christopher Herrod was stripped by the current U.S. Rep. John Curtis, who lost by more than 40 points after criticizing Curtis for his embrace of moderate climate change proposals and his vote to set up a commission to investigate the January 6 attack on the Capitol.
Andrew Badger, a self-described “America First” candidate who promised to end “medical tyranny” and federal funding for “critical race theory”, was crush by the current Rep. Blake Moore with over 30 points.
In Oklahoma, a prominent election denier and pastor named Jackson Lahmeyer – who earned the endorsements of Trump-allied conspirators Michael Flynn and Lin Wood – lost his primary race for the U.S. Senate after the current sen. James Lankford with over 40 points.
In Illinois, far-right activist Peggy Hubbard, who attended the January 6 uprising and later falsely blamed the violence on “antifa” that day. lost her race to be the GOP nominee for the U.S. Senate by 6 points.
And in Mississippi, Navy Reserve Pilot Mike Cassidy lost to the current U.S. Rep. Michael Guest, despite repeatedly attacking Guest on the campaign trail over his vote to form a committee to investigate the attack on the Capitol.
Cassidy, who pointed to MAGA extremist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene as “the kind of person I want to be when I get into Congress,” Guest lost by 35 points.
These losses do not necessarily mean that Trumpism – or the man himself – will lose his grip on the party.
Greene, who’s it? support commits violence against Democrats and who was the speaker at a white nationalist conference, won her own primary in Georgia late last month. A handful of her allies in the U.S. House won their primary battles this week, including Boebert and Rep. Mary Miller (R-Ill.).
Trump recently endorsed Miller at a rally in Illinois, where Miller refer to the Supreme Court decision to remove the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion as a “victory for white life” to reverse. (One of her assistants later said she spoke incorrectly.)
Sen. Illinois State Darren Bailey won the GOP nomination for governor of Illinois on Tuesday, also after earning an endorsement for Trump. Bailey – a right-wing extremist who has describe Chicago as a “hellhole” he wants to kick out of the state – beating his nearest opponent by more than 40 points, but now facing an uphill battle in a largely Democratic state.