Beto O'Rourke is running for governor!

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The Weekender (11/19/21)

Welcome to the Democratic Governors Association’s Friday newsletter, The Weekender.

Let’s get started.

Pennsylvania: With just under a year until Election Day, Pennsylvania Republicans are still mostly unswayed by the crowded field of GOP candidates for governor. However, new polling shows that candidates with far-right positions are taking hold over GOP voters, setting up the primary as a sprint to the right. A new Public Policy Polling survey found right-wing extremist Doug Mastriano leading a chaotic field of Republican candidates. Every one of the Pennsylvania GOP gubernatorial candidates supports Trump’s unnecessary and costly partisan audit of the 2020 election, with many going even further. Doug Mastriano played a direct role in the attack on the U.S. Capitol, Lou Baretta refused to admit Trump lost the election, and Joe Gale has promised to “continue advancing the Trump movement.”Texas: On Monday, Democrat Beto O’Rourke announced his run for governor against Gov. Greg Abbott. In his announcement video, he reminded Texans of the deadly winter storm, which left much of the state without power or water, and criticized the divisive right-wing agenda pushed by Gov. Abbott. O’Rourke slammed the Republican governor who “doesn’t trust women to make their healthcare decisions, doesn’t trust police chiefs when they tell him not to sign the permit-less carry bill into law, [and] doesn’t trust voters, so he changes the rules of our elections.” Since announcing, O’Rourke has hit the ground running with visits to several cities across the Lone Star state. On his San Antonio visit, he was seen dancing to mariachi music with a supporter.

RGA in Disarray: Doug Ducey’s Power Slips as Donald Trump Endorses Another Challenger to a Sitting GOP GovernorRGA Chair Doug Ducey is fighting a losing battle to protect his GOP incumbent governors and wrestle control of his organization away from Donald Trump. Once again, the former president endorsed a GOP challenger to a sitting Republican governor in Idaho, picking Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin over Gov. Brad Little. McGeachin is best known for undermining Little whenever he leaves the state when McGeachin seizes the opportunity to take full advantage of her powers as acting governor and implement policies Little disagrees with before he comes back.

Trump also recently endorsed a GOP primary challenger in Massachusetts, where he refused to support incumbent Gov. Charlie Baker, saying Baker has “done nothing for the Republican Party.” Trump’s endorsement of GOP primary candidates is making GOP governors extremely vulnerable to attack. But the infighting doesn’t stop there. Trump has also gone after GOP governors Mike DeWine, Brian Kemp, and Ducey himself, who has consistently been unable to protect his incumbent governors from Trump’s wing of the party — much less the party’s leader himself. It’s no secret how Donald Trump feels about Ducey. Trump has repeatedly attacked him, labeling him an “unelectable RINO.” Now, Ducey’s terrible standing with the former president is leaving him powerless to stop these attacks from within his own party.

Dem Govs Highlight the Monumental Impact of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill in Their StatesDemocratic governors are celebrating President Biden signing the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law and are already spreading the word to let people in their states know the tremendous impact of this legislation.

DGA Executive Director Noam Lee said, “Democratic governors understand that this legislation will make a difference in the lives of every American — whether you’re a worker, business owner, or a parent. That’s why they’re getting out and spreading the word to folks in their states on what this extraordinary investment in our infrastructure means for them. “Republicans have been awfully quiet on the signing of this bill, and we will see their hypocrisy on full display when they try to take credit for the achievements spearheaded by Democratic leadership the moment they reach people in their states.”

Click here to read what Democratic governors are saying following President Biden’s signing of the transformational infrastructure bill.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear on MSNBC with Cal Perry describing how the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill will improve Kentucky’s roads, bridges, and drinking water.New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on MSNBC with Joe Scarborough celebrating the transformational investments included in President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill.

Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke on MSNBC with Chris Hayes talking about why he’s running for governor and the importance of defeating Gov. Greg Abbott.


“I vetoed the maps sent to me today by the legislature. Simply put — people should choose their elected officials, not the other way around. I won’t let Wisconsin suffer another decade of gerrymandered maps.”

  • Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers following through on his promise to veto Republicans’ gerrymandered maps.

“Sounds like the cure is worse than the, uh, actually the virus itself at this point.”Who said it? Send your answer to press@dga.net, and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!

If you guessed Michigan GOP candidate James Craig last week, you got it! During his failed campaign launch, Craig avoided answering a question about how he would improve infrastructure. He has not made further comments on infrastructure despite the historic investment signed by President Biden this week.