The Weekender (2/4/22)


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

Let’s get started.

Maryland: In yet another sign that the Maryland Republican primary will be a far-right sprint dominated by Donald Trump loyalty contests, a new poll from Public Policy Polling shows Trump-endorsed Dan Cox beating Kelly Schulz in a head-to-head matchup. The poll also shows that when respondents are informed of Donald Trump’s endorsement of Cox and Larry Hogan’s endorsement of Schulz, Cox’s lead grows to 34 points (52-18). Stephen Farnsworth with the University of Mary Washington said, “It’s clear that Donald Trump continues to drive the narrative within the Republican Party.” Schulz has remained silent on almost every major issue driving the primary, so it’s not surprising 74% of GOP primary voters have no opinion of her. Dan Cox’s extreme record — including notoriously organizing buses to the Capitol on January 6th and calling Mike Pence a “traitor” — has made him the pacesetter, as the poll shows 61% of GOP primary voters agree with Trump’s claim that President Biden was not legitimately elected.
Massachusetts: In a campaign strategy new reporting from Politico calls a “head-scratcher,” Geoff Diehl is going all-in on embracing Donald Trump and his toxic agenda — in “one of the bluest, most anti-Trump states in the country.” The report from Politico adds that Diehl touts his “complete and total endorsement” from Trump whenever he has the chance and just announced he’s hiring Trump’s ousted one-time campaign manager Corey Lewandowski as his senior advisor for his campaign. Massachusetts Republicans are understandably worried as their top candidate for governor builds his campaign around positions that are extremely unpopular with most of the state’s voters. The former chair of the Massachusetts GOP said, “The more [Diehl] talks about Trump and brings in Trump people, the less chance he has of wooing those folks that are in the middle.”

Negative Attack Ads, Abysmal Fundraising, and Dangerous Extremism — Michigan GOP Primary Has Never Been More of a Disaster
The Michigan GOP primary keeps getting more chaotic and shows no signs of slowing down. This week, a super PAC backing Tudor Dixon launched an attack ad calling Kevin Rinke “simply unelectable,” and Rinke won’t be the only candidate trying to buy the election now that out-of-touch millionaire Perry Johnson is in. At the same time, James Craig’s fundraising has been dismal — even though he was handpicked by insiders — as he can’t even seem to name the state he’s running in.Meanwhile, all of the candidates are pushing dangerous agendas that would hurt Michigan families. While Garrett Soldano recently made headlines for saying rape victims shouldn’t have abortions, the reality is the entire field of candidates supports dangerous abortion bans. In an interview with FOX 17, James Craig made it clear that he agrees with Soldano’s extreme plan to ban abortions in Michigan with no exemptions for rape. And as the GOP candidates continue to push lies that undermine free and fair elections, insurrectionist Ryan Kelley was referred to the Attorney General for telling people to unplug voting machines.

Gov. Ned Lamont Delivering For Working Families, Proposes $336 Million in Tax Cuts
As Connecticut’s economy continues to grow and the state attracts new businesses, Gov. Ned Lamont unveiled a new tax cut plan to deliver for working families, including tax cuts that will provide approximately $336 million in relief for Connecticut residents.“With a growing state budget surplus, Gov. Ned Lamont said Wednesday he will propose to expand Connecticut’s property tax credit to an additional 500,000 residents and lower the maximum tax rate cities and towns can charge for 1.7 million motor vehicles, with the state making up the lost revenue,” reported the Stamford Advocate.The proposal will provide property tax credits for over one million people, a lower car tax rate for 1.7 million vehicles, and tax cuts for 250,000 retirees and 32,000 workers with student loans.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis on CNN with Don Lemon and MSNBC with Chuck Todd discussing his COVID response strategy.New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on MSNBC with Chuck Todd explaining how governors are tackling COVID.Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams on CNN with Don Lemon and MSNBC with Joy Reid highlighting the importance of protecting voting rights.

Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke on MSNBC with Chris Hayes talking about Gov. Greg Abbott’s failure to protect Texans during severe weather events.

“In Illinois, our elections are protected because we’re not scared of more people voting.”

  • Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker delivering his annual State of the State and budget address.

“Elections in Wisconsin must have more authority for the voters so that they have essentially one throat to choke.”
Who said it? Send your answer to, and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!If you guessed Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake last time, you guessed right! In an interview with Greg Kelly, Lake declared herself a supporter of the Big Lie and, regarding Trump, said, “I think he won big…they’re trying to make people think that that election was legit, and it was rotten.”