The America First movement had another marquee victory in Michigan where DTR-endorsed candidate John Gibbs defeated first term Congressman Peter Meijer in a late night nail-biter. Relatively unknown, but with an impressive resume including degrees from Stanford and Harvard, Gibbs, who worked four years in the Trump administration at HUD under Dr. Ben Carson, won despite a lopsided financial advantage for Meijer. John Gibbs was endorsed early by President Trump, plus voters knew Rep. Meijer was one of the ten Republican members of Congress who voted to impeach Trump.
In an unusual tactic, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) ran subtle ‘attack ads’ stating Gibbs was too conservative for the district. The strategic purpose of these ads was to promote Gibbs to Republican primary voters in the belief that Gibbs would be the easier candidate for the Democrats to beat in the general election rather than moderate Republican Peter Meijer. There can be little doubt that the money the DCCC spent on ads touting Gibbs as too conservative for the district did help advance Gibbs’ campaign message over the better funded Meijer. Gibbs now advances to the general election. Meanwhile, some Democrats and Republicans including Rep. Meijer have spoken out and highly criticized the DCCC for involving itself in the race.
Noteworthy: “Meijer’s campaign reported total fundraising of $2.8 million as of July 13 and had $894,000 on hand. Gibbs’ campaign reported raising $484,000 as of July 13 and had $145,000 on hand.” Even taking into account that the DCCC spent $400,000 to run ads touting Gibbs’ conservatism, Gibbs was vastly outspent, and yet Gibbs still won. This is indicative of how strong the America First movement is with the grassroots.
For more details on the funding disparities between Meijer’s and Gibbs’ campaigns, see this: