Bernie Sanders hasn’t won the Democratic primary — but down-ballot Republicans are having a field day acting like he has.
Republicans up and down the ballot are already casting their Democratic rivals as socialist puppets who would remake the economy in Sanders’ collectivist vision. The play is straightforward: President Donald Trump has repelled college-educated suburban voters since he took office; Republicans want to win them back by arguing the alternative is worse.
Arizona Sen. Martha McSally launched a TV ad titled “Bernie Bro” likening her Democratic opponent, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, to the Vermont senator. North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis held a news conference last week linking his Democratic rivals to the Sanders-backed “Green New Deal.” In Michigan, a conservative group has aired a series of commercials that go after Democratic Sen. Gary Peters by invoking Sanders and his support for “Medicare for All.”