The Weekender (7/29/22)


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

Let’s get started.

Kansas: GOP candidate Derek Schmidt’s campaign is lagging leagues behind Gov. Laura Kelly. Schmidt reported an anemic fundraising total of just $700,000 from January 1st to July 21st. Meanwhile, Gov. Kelly announced a massive fundraising haul that more than doubled Schmidt’s, raising over $1.5 million in the same period. Gov. Kelly’s fundraising total marks the most raised by an incumbent governor in Kansas history at this point in the cycle. Gov. Kelly also saw broad grassroots support, with the average campaign contribution under $100. This is especially bad news for Schmidt, who is months behind Gov. Kelly’s campaign when it comes to TV ads running on the air. As a result, the only thing Kansans know about Schmidt is he’d drag the state back to the budget disasters and education cuts he defended under Sam Brownback.
Wisconsin: This week, the Wisconsin GOP primary for governor officially became a battleground for the fight between Donald Trump and Mike Pence. Pence announced he’s endorsing Rebecca Kleefisch, a decision that flies in the face of Trump, who endorsed Tim Michels a few weeks ago. The primary was divisive already: Wisconsin Republicans couldn’t even come together to endorse a candidate at their state party convention. Now, it’s pitting the former president against the former vice president in a move that will splinter the GOP base even more. Making things even juicer, Trump is scheduled to hold a rally in Wisconsin next week to support Michels. Trump’s endorsement sets off an infighting-fueled far-right sprint for the GOP candidates to the August 9th primary. It spurred Kleefisch to run multiple attack ads against Michels, including one featuring Wisconsin’s favorite failed former governor, Scott Walker. Now that Pence has officially backed a horse in the race, the GOP candidates will have to go even more to the right to court fringe GOP votes and prove they’re the most conservative candidate.

Air Karrin Accused of Taking Flights to Campaign Events on Husband’s Private Jet
In yet another example that she’s completely out-of-touch with working Arizonans, new reporting shows Karrin Taylor Robson looks to be traveling to campaign events in her husband’s multi-million dollar private jet.None of the flights on Air Karrin have been properly reported in her campaign finance reports.This past weekend, a private jet registered to her husband’s company took an 11-minute flight to Glendale, a short drive from Taylor Robson’s campaign event with Mike Pence, then to another town where the two campaigned together hours later.

When Arizona’s Family looked into other flights made by the jet, they found several stops coinciding with Taylor Robson’s campaign events — including a Nashville, TN meeting at the RGA’s spring conference.

While Attorney General Josh Shapiro Rolls Out Economic Plan, Doug Mastriano Is Getting Slammed For “Heinous” Ties With Gab
Every week, the contrast in the Pennsylvania governor’s race becomes clearer. While Doug Mastriano is getting slammed across the Commonwealth for his ties to Gab and doubling down on campaigning with antisemitic extremists, Attorney General Josh Shapiro has been traveling across the state to speak to Pennsylvanians about his plans to tackle the issues that matter most — like lowering costs, protecting rights, improving education, and keeping communities safe.This week, Shapiro unveiled his economic plan in Dunmore — laying out his aggressive strategy to jump-start Pennsylvania’s economy by cutting red tape, lowering taxes, and making it easier to do business in the Commonwealth.Mastriano, on the other hand, is once again getting called out for being the only politician in the country to pay Gab — a “haven” for “white supremacists, antisemites, and violent extremists” — thousands of dollars for their far-right followers to join his campaign.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on CNN with Bianna Golodryga and MSNBC with Peter Alexander describing his response to the recent heat wave in Washington and his state’s efforts to combat climate change.Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear on CNN with Brianna Keilar explaining his response to the ongoing flooding in Kentucky.

Maryland Democratic gubernatorial nominee Wes Moore on MSNBC with Willie Geist talking about the importance of defeating Dan Cox’s extremism in November.

Pennsylvania Democratic gubernatorial nominee Josh Shapiro on MSNBC with Rachel Maddow condemning Doug Mastriano for campaigning with antisemitic extremists.

Texas Democratic gubernatorial nominee Beto O’Rourke on MSNBC with Lawrence O’Donnell discussing Greg Abbott’s failure to protect Texans from gun violence and high costs.

“We were successful in this campaign because Marylanders, from every region of the state, united behind a vision for a state that truly leaves no one behind — more economic opportunity, better public schools, safer communities. Marylanders will face a very clear choice this November. A choice between unity and division, a future built on optimism versus the cynical politics of conspiracy theories and fear, and between the values we embrace as Marylanders and Donald Trump’s divisive and dangerous MAGA movement.”

  • Democratic nominee for governor of Maryland Wes Moore on the high stakes of the November election.

“We’re going to make sure that the policies that President Trump has advanced are the policies we bring to Maryland.”Who said it? Send your answer to, and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!If you guessed GOP candidate for Michigan governor Tudor Dixon last week, you were correct! In an interview, Dixon doubled down on her extreme plan to ban abortion without exceptions, saying that a 14-year-old girl raped by her uncle is a “perfect example” of who should be forced to carry out a pregnancy.