The Club’s Impact – Incumbents Beware

A very interesting article in the Washington Post regarding the Club for Growth’s latest impact. In case you missed it, there was a Republican Primary this last Tuesday in Maryland in which an 18-year incumbent was knocked out by a Club for Growth challenger.

In Tuesday’s race, 9-term Republican incumbent, Wayne Gilchrest was defeated by State Senator Andy Harris. Gilchrest had been challenged twice before by others but this time was unable to fend off the more conservative Harris who simulataneously fought off a last minute candidate who dumped over a million dollars into the race.

Harris attributes his victory to the Club for Growth’s involvement in the race in which they spent $670,000 on independent expenditure advertising. Club for Growth members also gave more than $435,000 directly to the Harris campaign bringing the Club’s total financial impact to the race to $1.1 Million.

What makes this story especially relevant to Arizona is that the Club for Growth has expressed a serious interest in the campaign of David Schweikert who is seeking to return the 5th Congressional District to Republicans. Schweikert is one of three candidates nationwide who the Club has evaluated and decided to invest its time and treasure.

Schweikert has already brought over a half million dollars to the table and will likely amass more financial support not just from state donors but also nationwide.

And although one-term incumbent Harry Mitchell should be very afraid of Schweikert’s challenge, other Republicans already in the race or thinking about entering the Primary should reconsider competing against a challenger who has done very well sucking all the oxygen out of the room. 


  1. CFG’s slash and burn tactics against fellow Republicans is not what we need in CD5. Weakening a challenger against an incumbent who will have at least $1.5m on hand by the general along with millions from the SEIU, NEA and DCCC is a recipe for four more years of Harry and carved out safe seat for Mark Mitchell to continue the “legacy” of inaction.

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