LANSING — Despite Republicans being a year away from determining who will be their party’s nominee, it’s already extremely clear what issues will define the race from now until then. Reflecting the rightward direction the Michigan Republican base has gone in since last November’s election, all nine candidates in this crowded primary will be expected to pass radical ideological purity tests to clearly identify where they stand on the following issues:
- Legitimacy of the 2020 election: Whether the 2020 election was legally operated, whether its results should be considered legitimate, and if the audits and investigations that have already been conducted to date should be taken at face value.
- 1/6 Insurrection: Whether the breach of our nation’s U.S. Capitol building on January 6th can be called an insurrection and if the violence that day (resulting in the racial, psychological, and physical abuse of police officers) even happened or was conducted at the hands of right-wing extremists in defense of President Trump’s loss.
- If COVID-19 is real and what lengths should be taken to protect the public: Despite the highly contagious delta variant of COVID-19 now being the dominant strain in the U.S. and particularly dangerous for those that are unvaccinated, whether they will continue to maintain coronavirus is either a hoax or shouldn’t be taken seriously, with an aggressive rejection of any and all efforts to stop the spread — from mask-wearing to getting vaccinated.
With potential candidates like Betsy DeVos and Kevin Rinke still considering ballooning the candidate count into the double digits, Michiganders can expect these three pillars will serve as the foundation of the primary through to and after when voters start casting ballots.
“What do all these purity tests have in common? Whether candidates come out the ‘right’ way on them or not in the eyes of the Republican base, they get Michiganders no closer to determining who can actually keep them first and improve their lives,” said Rodericka Applewhaite, MDP spokesperson. “The Republican primary field is so fixated on these pillars because they think it will help hide the fact that none of them have ever had to be held accountable to a constituency that expects results. And in the case of James Craig, he has been dodging reporters and voters for months in total denial that Michiganders deserve a clear answer on these issues. Meanwhile, Governor Whitmer is exhibiting on a daily basis the exact kind of leadership our working families need as she’s prioritized historic investments in healthcare, public education, and roads that have gotten Michigan safely back to work and restored our economy to pre-pandemic levels.”