Politics

On Jeff Van Drew, GOP Is Taking Victory Lap

Former Democrat from the Garden State said the Republican Party is 'a better fit for me' and that he'd thought it before this as well

Image Credit: Fox News Video Screenshot

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said on Friday morning on “Fox & Friends” that she’s seeing evidence that more Democrats will join the GOP. That’s after the defection from the Democrat House caucus of Rep. Jeff Van Drew — who is now a Republican from New Jersey.

“Absolutely, this is a trend we are seeing,” she noted.

“You know, as we [get] to rallies, we get reports as to who is attending these rallies and close to 20 percent of our rally attendees are Democrats — because this president transcends party lines. When [President Donald Trump] talks about jobs, yeah, 20 percent. The one in Michigan, it was just 20 percent recently and 30 percent independents.”

“So, [Trump] transcends party lines because he talks about jobs and wage growth and all the things that matter to the American people.”

Van Drew made it official in an Oval Office meeting with Trump on Thursday.

Related: Van Drew Prepares to Change Parties

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The former Democrat from the Garden State said the GOP “is just a better fit for me” and “there were other times in my life when I thought about this.”

The president called Van Drew “a tremendous asset to the party” and told him, “I’m with you all the way,” according to Fox News.

For her part, McDaniel gave Van Drew a “big welcome” and encouraged others disaffected with the Dems to “come on over.”

The Trump re-election campaign raised $5 million on Wednesday — the day the House impeached the president — and over $10 million in the 48 hours during and after the impeachment vote.

No doubt nervous Dems see those numbers — and wonder themselves about their own futures as Democrats.

McDaniel further stated on the Fox News morning show, “We have added 600,000 small online donors since this impeachment began. So it shows that people are really angry. They are passionate. They don’t want to see Democrats take away their vote and they are doing what they can, which is give to this president.”

There have been times in the past when popular Republican presidents caused Democrats to realign to the GOP.

During the Reagan era of the early 1980s, many conservative Dems, some of them members of the “boll weevil” faction of the Dem House caucus, defected to the Republicans.

A prominent member of that group was Rep. Phil Gramm (R-Texas), who later was elected to the Senate and was a GOP presidential candidate in 1996.

As the debate on removing the president from office gets even more heated across the country, numerous Dems, primarily at the local and state legislative levels, will consider joining the GOP.

As they see a GOP and Trump victory in the Senate looming larger and larger, combined with popular discontent at Democrat delaying tactics, there will be those who — either out of political survival or ideological alignment — quit the Democratic Party.

This is just another facet of the dangerous impeachment gamble the Dems have taken.

So far, the investment is far too much for the expected non-existent return.

David Kamioner
meet the author

David Kamioner is a veteran of U.S. Army Intelligence and an honors graduate of the University of Maryland's European Division. He also served with the Pershing Nuclear Brigade and the First Infantry Division. Subsequent to that he worked for two decades as a political consultant, was part of the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort in Louisiana, ran a homeless shelter for veterans in Philadelphia, and taught as a college instructor. He serves as a Contributing Editor for LifeZette.

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