BY: Erick Erickson
Chris McDaniel ran for the United States Senate as a Republican. He won the Republican Primary in Mississippi, but was thrown into a runoff against Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS), the incumbent.
During the runoff, the Republican Party in Mississippi and Washington pulled out all the stops to stop McDaniel. They assailed outside conservative groups as malevolent influences in the Republican Party. They used friends in the news media to attack conservatives who strayed from the party line.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee was particularly spiteful with both their outside consultants and inside communications team, led by Brad Dayspring, attacking anyone and any group that strayed from Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS). They assailed Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who at the time was even a co-chair of the NRSC.
The extent to which the GOP was willing to play for keeps — largely to keep a gravy train of government waste and greed rolling — was eye opening to many conservative activists.
When Governor Rick Perry hired Henry Barbour, the nephew of Haley Barbour and one of those orchestrating the Cochran defense, many conservative activists turned from Perry and never went back.
When Scott Walker tossed Liz Mair, but stood by his Super PAC’s hiring of Brad Dayspring, conservative activists fled him too.
Many of those activists decided the party that burned them needs to be burned down. They are prepared to show as much grace and mercy to the GOP as the GOP showed them in 2014.