February 26, 2018

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GOP Governors Running Scared at NGA Weekend

RGA Admits They’re On The Defense as Governors Hide on Guns, Greitens

As governors head to the White House this morning to meet with President Trump, it’s become clear just how scared Republicans are—both of their 2018 election prospects and of the tough issues of the day.

RGA Chair Bill Haslam of Tennesee spoke openly this weekend about playing defense this cycle, according to the Washington Post:

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam chairs the Republican Governors Association. He noted the degree to which his party is on the defensive, both because the midterm climate in the first election of a new presidency favors the opposition party — “You’re facing an energized left,” he said — and because Republicans have so many governorships to defend.

Meanwhile, other Republican governors fled from reporters asking them about the issues of the day. ABC News reported:

Avoiding the topic completely at the NGA meeting were Gov. Scott Walker, R-Wisc., Gov. Matt Bevin, R-Ky., and Gov. Rick Snyder, R-Mich., who refused to answer any questions on guns when asked by the media.

Scott Walker, the former presidential candidate and RGA chair, took this dodging tactic to absurd heights. The Daily Beast reported:

This weekend, when The Daily Beast asked Wisconsin governor and failed Republican presidential candidate Scott Walker about gun control, he reverted back to the NRA’s usual guidance for responding to mass shootings and went mum. 

“What do you think about the president calling for arming teachers?” The Daily Beast asked as Walker and an entourage of staffers and state troopers made their way to a bank of elevators in the fancy hotel the governors took over, mere blocks from the White House.

“I’m focused on the transportation,” Walker replied.

“So you’re not even tuned in to the national debate?” The Daily Beast asked.

“I’m not talking about that,” Walker said as he impatiently waited for a slow elevator to whisk him away. “Not talking about that right now. No, I’m not here as a national figure. I’m here as a governor.” 

Republicans also dodged when asked about their fellow governor, Eric Greitens of Missouri, who was indicted on charges related to sexual blackmail last week:

At the NGA meeting in Washington, the most frequent response was to shrug and say Greitens’ next move is his decision. 

“I just saw a little bit reported about that in the media,” current Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant said. “I just don’t have enough mileage to determine whether or not he should resign or stay on.”

“We saw this weekend that Republican governors are running scared while Democrats are playing offense this huge election year,” said DGA Communications Director Jared Leopold. “Republicans are right to be worried about their 2018 electoral prospects, but they’re delusional if they think they can run and hide from the voters of their states this fall.”

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