The Growth Club, long seen as one of the most powerful groups in Republican politics, is sticking with its pick in the chaotic Ohio Senate primary despite attacks from senior Trump allies backing a rival candidate.
The anti-tax organization, which supports former state treasurer Josh Mandel in the contest, has started airing a new ad directly aimed at endorsing former head of venture capitalist J.D. Vance. Trump supported Vance, author of “Hilbilly Elegy,” despite Vance’s previous criticism of him.
In the new ad, actors portraying Ohio voters show old footage of Vance knocking on Trump. In one clip, Vance is shown declaring himself a “Never Trump Man” – a designation used by Republicans who refused to support Trump in 2016 and 2020. In another clip, Vance suggests he might vote for Hillary Clinton, Trump’s Democratic opponent in 2016.
Did Trump see this? “Where does he come from saying that?” asks a representative in the ad, later saying of Vance, after seeing the footage.
Another actor says, “We have our eyes and ears.”
The ad also includes a reference to Trump’s support for Mitt Romney, with the actress contemptuously stating, “How did that end?” Romney, now a Republican senator from Utah, has since emerged as one of Trump’s most prominent critics within the Republican Party and has twice voted to impeach Trump.
Another representative said, “Look, I love Trump, but he got it wrong with J.D. Vance too.”
It’s not the first Growth Advertising Club Highlight Vance’s previous statements. Late last year, Trump She reportedly asked the group to stop airing their ads — which featured Vance calling him “idiot,” “harmful” and “offensive” — fearing it would hurt Trump’s popularity in the state.
The Growth Club spent $71 million Supporting Republican candidates in the 2020 election, it has so far raised $38 million for the 2022 half-year, and has spent $13 million. For his part, Vance has become a staunch supporter of Trump in recent years, and is a regular guest on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson show during prime times.
According to the New York Times,Trump expected the club’s media campaign to stop once he endorsed Vance, but when the attacks continued, he dispatched an aide to the group’s president, David McIntosh, Angry text message full of swear words.
as a response, A spokesperson for the group told Politico that the group was buying more advertising time to support Mandel. Since then, the president’s eldest son, Donald Jr., has attacked both Mandel and the Club for Growth Many times on Twitter.
Although the Growth Club opposed Trump in the 2016 Republican presidential primaries, it quickly fell into line behind him once he won the presidency and supported his re-election efforts in 2020. Trump and the club support many of the same candidates in this year’s Republican primaries, which are A fact Macintosh tried to emphasize to the New York Times.
“I view this as one race where we don’t ally ourselves, we’re on opposite sides, and that doesn’t happen often,” he told the newspaper.
Trump’s endorsement appears to be paying off in the crowded Ohio primary, which features a number of other candidates in addition to Vance and Mandel. a Fox News Poll published Tuesday Showed that Vance took the lead in the race, with 23% support compared to Mandel 18%.
Primary elections will be held on May 3. The winner is expected to face Democratic Representative Tim Ryan in the November general election.
Trump won Ohio in both 2016 and 2020 by 8 points. The currently impartial Cook Report predicts that the Republican candidate will have the advantage in the general election.
Trump’s April 15 approval of Vance Annoyed many Republicans in Ohio who back the other candidates in the race to replace retired Republican Senator Rob Portman. previous president Organized a rally with Vance on Saturday night Where to explain the authentication.
“He’s a guy who said some bad shit about me,” Trump said of Vance. “If I had stuck to that standard, I don’t think I would have endorsed anyone in the country at all.”