Last updated on May 20, 2020
More great work from Lachlan Markay at The Daily Beast:
Days after he sought to distance himself from some of President Donald Trump’s more outlandish statements, Michigan Republican Senate candidate John James is raising money with the help of the president’s eldest son.
Donald Trump Jr. will co-host a virtual fundraiser on Monday for James, a top Republican Senate recruit who hopes to flip a competitive seat in a state Trump narrowly carried in 2016. The fundraiser, which will take place over the teleconferencing platform Zoom, offers donors who give $1,000 the chance to pose questions to James and the younger Trump.
The event comes just days after James privately expressed disagreement with Trump on “plenty, plenty of issues,” according to a Politico report on his comments to a group of African American leaders.
“Everything from cutting Great Lakes funding to ‘shithole countries’ to speaking ill of the dead,” James said. “I mean, where do you want to start?” James also pointed out that he hasn’t received any campaign contributions from the president.
Trump endorsed James during his unsuccessful 2018 Senate run, and his campaign has sent fundraising emails this year under the president’s name. But the fundraiser on Monday shows how committed Trump’s political inner circle is to electing James and how dependent James and other Republican candidates are on the political networks that have been built around the Trump brand and family. The younger Trump, after all, has the same proudly-vicious approach to politics that James found problematic in his dad. Just this past weekend, Donald Trump Jr. shared an Instagram post that insinuated Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden was a pedophile.
James isn’t fooling anyone and it says a lot about Trump’s chances in Michigan of winning the state again. The fact that James needs to distance himself from Trump speaks volumes but U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D. MI) isn’t letting James off the hook. I received this e-mail today from Peters’ re-election campaign:
Donald Trump just announced he’s coming back to Michigan this week.
This will be the Trump team’s 8th visit to Michigan in the last year — and he keeps coming back because he knows if Democrats lose here, we have ZERO chance of taking back the Senate.
To make matters worse, his son, Donald Trump Jr., hosted a private fundraiser for my Republican opponent TODAY where tickets started at $1,000 to ask a question.
The Trumps are bringing in wealthy donors from across the country to funnel money into my far-right opponent’s pockets in an attempt to buy this election. I’ve got one thing to say to them — bring it on.
But I’ll need your help. Because if we lose here, Democrats will have two more years of Mitch McConnell calling the shots in Washington.
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