GOP, home to Trump and Tea Party, de­cries Dems’ mob rule

Connecticut Post - - OBITUARIES/NEWS -

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump and Se­nate Repub­li­cans are fore­cast­ing night­mar­ish Demo­cratic “mob rule” to amp up GOP vot­ers for next month’s crit­i­cal midterm elec­tions, flip­ping the script from com­plaints that it’s Trump and the Tea Party move­ment who have boosted rowdy and di­vi­sive tac­tics to dan­ger­ous lev­els.

Less than a month from vot­ing in which GOP con­trol of Congress is dan­gling pre­car­i­ously, Repub­li­cans are link­ing com­ments and ac­tions by Demo­cratic politi­cians, rau­cous protesters op­pos­ing Brett Ka­vanaugh’s Supreme Court nom­i­na­tion and even a gun­man who shot tar­geted GOP law­mak­ers. The mes­sage to Repub­li­can vot­ers: Democrats are em­ploy­ing rad­i­cal tac­tics that are only grow­ing worse.

“Only one side was happy to play host to this toxic fringe be­hav­ior,” Se­nate Ma­jor­ity Leader Mitch McCon­nell, R-Ky., said Thurs­day in the lat­est GOP at­tack. “Only one side’s lead­ers are now openly call­ing for more of it. They haven’t seen enough. They want more. And I’m afraid this is only Phase One of the melt­down.”

It’s not un­usual for Repub­li­cans and Democrats alike to sharpen their rhetoric as elec­tions draw near in hopes of draw­ing loyal vot­ers to the polls. But the GOP shift to dis­parag­ing de­scrip­tions of their op­po­nents as un­ruly and sin­is­ter is a marked change from their mes­sag­ing be­fore the Ka­vanaugh bat­tle, when they’d hoped to fo­cus on the strong econ­omy and the mam­moth tax cut they pushed through Congress last De­cem­ber.

Both par­ties have de­tected a surge in en­gage­ment among GOP and con­ser­va­tive vot­ers since the na­tion’s at­ten­tion was grabbed by the con­fir­ma­tion bat­tle over Ka­vanaugh, in­clud­ing al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual mis­con­duct that he de­nied. While no one knows if that en­ergy will last un­til Election Day, Demo­cratic vot­ers driven by an an­i­mus to­ward Trump un­til now were far more mo­ti­vated.

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