Every election year, the GOP comes up with a new crop of wingnut candidates for office. This one is no exception.
Todd Akin. Christine O’Donnell. Joe Miller. Sharron Angle. Back in 2010, they soared to new heights of wingnuttery. Will any of this election's nuttiest wingnuts become the next Todd Akin or Christine O’Donnell? It’s hard to say, because the GOP has tried to avoid minting more extreme right-wing candidates like those who flamed out in 2010. But if this list is any indication, Republicans haven’t entirely succeeded in that effort.
In fact, conservatives have a lot invested in some of the most extreme right-wing candidates. The Koch brothers pledged to pour $500,000,000 — half a billion dollars — into this election. With four days to go, they’ve spent over $488,000,000 through their network of organizations. Some of those millions went to the campaigns of some of the candidates on this list.
So, here are the nuttiest wingnuts on the ballot in 2014.
First, we head down to Georgia, where two wingnut candidates are on the ballot.
Georgia governor Nathan Deal is one of the struggling GOP governors who could hurt the the party’s chances of taking the Senate. Deal is trying to hold on to the governorship, and hold off Democratic challenger Jason Carter, grandson of former president Jimmy Carter. Deal’s two biggest problems are (a) his mouth and (b) his policies.
Let’s give Gov. Deal points for generosity. He not only tried to get himself off the hook for Georgia’s high unemployment rate, but extended the favor to some of his fellow GOP governors. Deal claimed that Georgia — and other states with Republican governors — have high unemployment rates because the Obama administration “cooked the books.”
Of course, that couldn’t have anything to do with right-wing policies decimating those states’ economies. Could it? (I’m looking at you, Kansas.) The only question is why Deal didn’t blame his ethical problems on President Obama while he was at it.
Gov. Deal’s other hits include:
- Refusing the Medicaid expansion in the Affordable Care Act, thus denying health to 600,000 poor Georgians.
- Cutting jobless benefits, and requiring drug tests for welfare applicants.
- Signing Georgia’s “guns everywhere” bill into law.
If Gov. Deal is looking for someone to blame for Georgia’s unemployment rate, he may not need to look further than David Perdue, the GOP candidate for Georgia’s senate seat.
- Running on his experience as a corporate executive, Perdue told reporters he’s “proud” of his record of outsourcing jobs, and that anyone who has a problem with it is “ignorant.”
- Jobs aren’t the only thing Perdue is talented at getting out of the country. He’s got as much as $1 million sitting in a Swiss bank account.
- Perdue is also apparently proud that his company only discriminated against “less than 2,000” women.
Next, we head over to North Carolina, where House Speaker and GOP Senate candidate Thom Tillis is in a close — and costly — race with Democrat Sen. Kay Hagan.
Tillis is a contender to be this election’s Todd Akin. He’s got more than $17,000,000 in donation from the Koch brothers network.
After securing the GOP nomination, Tillis spoke out against the federal minimum wage on MSNBC.
Tillis’ political record keeps coming back to haunt him.
- In 2007, Tillis slammed government entitlement policies that he said “redistributed … trillions of dollars over the years,” amounting to “de facto reparations.”
- That same year, Tillis tried to stop North Carolina from apologizing for a 1898 massacre of blacks by white supremacists, because it didn’t praise white Republican leaders enough.
- Tillis supported the repeal of North Carolina’s Racial Justice Act — which allowed death-row inmates to appeal their sentences based on evidence of racial bias.
- Tillis also backed heavily restrictive laws to weaken the black vote, and complained in a 2012 interview that Democrats were gaining ground in North Carolina, while “traditional population of North Carolina and the United States is more or less stable.”
Tillis, by the way, was the choice of the “establishment” and “mainstream” wing of the GOP.
Conservative talk radio host Jodi Hice is the front-runner for the Georgia House seat vacated by right-winger Rep. Paul Broun. It’d be hard to find a nuttier candidate than Hice. For example, here’s his take on “End Times” and the appearance of “blood moons.”
According to his own book, Hice also believes:
- Abortion rights make the U.S. worse than Nazi Germany.
- Islam “does not deserve First Amendment protection.”
- Gay people want to ay people trying to “sodomize” children and persecute Christians.
- Children will be “preyed upon” by gay “recruitment” efforts until they embrace “destructive,” “militant homosexuality.”
This video does a pretty good job of summarizing Hice’s views, and is way more fun than listening to him.
When I said it would to find a candidate nuttier than Jody Hice, I may have spoken too soon. Glenn Grothman, the Wisconsin state senator running for an open House seat, is a virtual gold mine of wingnuttia. His defense of Uganda’s anti-gay law alone qualifies him.
Democrat Mark Harris released a TV spot that pretty much sums up Grothman’s nuttiness.
Grothman even proposed a Wisconsin bill to end weekends, because he thinks days off from work are “goofy.” What else can you expect from a guy who claims Rick Santorum as a “soul mate”? No wonder even the Republican Grothman’s running to replace won’t endorse him.
Iowa senate candidate Joni Ernst has been called “the choice of the Republican establishment,” and she’s got endorsements from the likes of Mitt Romney, Sen. John McCain and Sen. Marco Rubio to prove it. She’s also got more than $17 million from the Koch brothers and their network.
She was nice enough to thank them for it.
Maybe that’s why she can’t run away from her connection to them, no matter how much she lies.
But she continues to run from the media (unless it’s Fox News), afraid they might ask about some of her more “colorful” positions.
- Ernst backs the neo-confederate idea of “nullification,” and told an Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition that Congress should not pass any laws “that the states would consider nullifying.”
- Ernst carries a “beautiful little Smith & Wesson, 9 millimeter” everywhere she goes — to defend herself against the government, ” should they decide that my rights are no longer important.”
- Ernst would support legislation to arrest government employees trying to administer the Affordable Care Act.
- Ernst wants to make English the official language of the US. “I think it’s great when we can all communicate together,” Ernst said to a potential voter who asked if she’d back such a bill.
- In an April debate, Ernst called for shutting down the Environmental Protection Agency, IRS, and the Department of Education.
- Ernst believes the United Nations is behind a conpspiracy to “moving people off of their agricultural land and consolidating them into city sectors and then telling them, ‘You don’t have property rights anymore’.”
So, if you live in one of the states where these candidates are on the ballot, you should have all the motivation you need to get to you into a voting booth. Tuesday is your chance to make sure these candidates are sending out resumes on Wednesday, and not sponsoring legislation come January.