A group of Republicans opposed to President Donald Trump, including some who served in his administration, is launching a super PAC to mobilize disaffected GOP voters to back his opponent, Joe Biden.
Right Side PAC, led by Matt Borges, former chairman of the Ohio Republican Party, will target voters in battleground states with direct mail, phone calls and digital messaging promoting Biden’s moderate record and character. Skybridge Capital founder Anthony Scaramucci, who served for 10 days as Trump’s White House communications director, is advising and donating to the effort.
Unlike the Lincoln Project, a group set up by Republican consultants that’s spent almost $2 million on televison and digital ads attacking Trump, Borges says Right Side PAC is aiming to convince voters who’ve already turned against Trump that it’s better to pull the lever for Biden than vote for a third party or sit out the election.
“We’re not going to have a voter at our doorstep if they don’t already dislike the president,” Borges said. “We’re making sure people who already feel this way can feel comfortable with a vote for Biden.”
The super PAC, first reported by Axios, will initially focus on voters in Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, all states Trump won by narrow margins in 2016.
In addition to Scaramucci, once an avid Trump supporter who now says the president is unfit for office, the super PAC’s advisers include veteran operatives who served in the presidential campaigns of George W. Bush and the late Senator John McCain. Borges said at some point the group will roll out a full list, which also includes former Trump operatives.
Borges criticized Trump’s campaign during the 2016 election. During his transition, Trump successfully lobbied members of the Ohio GOP to replace Borges with Jane Timken, a supporter and donor.
Borges says Right Side PAC will stress Biden’s record as a moderate. In the primaries, unlike many of his Democratic rivals, Biden didn’t endorse Medicare for All, preferring to build on the Obama administration’s signature Affordable Care Act. Biden has also opposed demands to defund police departments that some activists have called for in the wake of the May death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis law enforcement officers.
Some messaging will draw a contrast between the two candidates on issues, including foreign relations, free trade and character, with the aim of presenting Biden as a candidate worth backing rather than bashing Trump.
“I’m not sure we’re going to say anything to make those voters dislike him more,” Borges said.
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