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Cortez Masto Courts Supporters of Virginia’s Terry McAuliffe

Joint fundraising email ties Nevada senator to candidate struggling on CRT and parental rights

By Ken Kurson, October 14, 2021 12:28 pm

The Nevada Globe has existed for 10 days now and thus far has enjoyed zero success in getting someone from Catherine Cortez Masto to respond to any of our calls and emails. Not even a brusque “no comment.” We’re starting to get a complex — *sniff!*

Our calls have been greeted by “someone will get back to you” and no one ever has. And our emails, such as yesterday’s asking “How does The Nevada Globe get on the routing for Sen. Cortez Masto’s campaign press releases?” have fallen on deaf ears from both the campaign and the Senator’s press operation.

The Senator’s operation seems content to have the Nevada Independent be the sole outlet for news it cares to share.

For example, yesterday, the Nevada Independent reported that the “campaign announced” that it had raised more than $3.15 million during the third quarter this year—a blockbuster number. Well, exactly where was this “announced”? Can anyone produce a URL linking to the campaign’s press release celebrating this achievement? In fact, the Globe’s requests of the campaign, and even of the reporter who wrote the Indy story, Jacob Solis, have been greeted with silence. Not even the Review Journal had a story on this eye-popping number. So much for having “announced” the good news.

Meanwhile, the quarterly number wasn’t the only moneyball on the minds of the Cortez Masto campaign. Yesterday, an email was sent to the fundraising list of a large progressive fundraising operation called Common Good. It’s a member of The Action Network, “a mission-driven organization dedicated to building online power for the progressive movement,“ whose partners include the AFL-CIO, the Daily Kos website, and Democrats.org.

Press play to hear a narrated version of this story, presented by AudioHopper.

What was strange is that the email arrived from sender “Catherine Cortez Masto” with the return address of <info@mcauliffeoffice.org>. Why is the Senator fundraising for herself using a joint list provided by Terry McAuliffe, whose presumed cakewalk return to the Virginia governor’s mansion has become a 2-point battle. Even CNN, Politico and The Daily Beast are apoplectic at how close the race has become, expressing headline concern about the candidate’s “desperation” and asking “Are we blowing this?”

Terry McAuliffe speaking at Frying Pan Park in Herndon, VA on May 13, 2009. (Photo by Kate Wellington)

So it’s odd enough that Cortez Masto, locked in what looks like it’ll be a brutally tough battle, is turning to a Clinton era politician who’s struggling in his own race

But what’s even more odd is that one of the reasons McAuliffe is struggling is thought to be his maladroit remarks regarding limiting the role parents ought to play in the education of their children.

According to a story in The Central Virginian headlined, “McAuliffe criticized for debate comment saying Virginia parents shouldn’t tell schools what to teach” the former governor said during a debate against Republican challenger Glenn Youngkin, “I’m not going to let parents come into schools and actually take books out and make their own decisions.” He later added, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”

Parental involvement with the schools has taken an unexpected place of primacy in the Virginia election.

According to the Central Virginian, parents at a recent meeting of the Fairfax County School Board expressed concern about Critical Race Theory and transgender inclusion materials finding their way into the curriculum, including the books “Lawn Boy” by Jonathan Evison and “Gender Queer” by Maia Kobabe, which one parent says contains sex between men and boys and pornographic drawings of sexual acts.

Instead of dying down, as McAuliffe surely hoped it would, the issue intensified after his remarks.

It recently emerged that back in late June a dad was roughly tackled at a Loudoun County, Virginia, school board meeting when he detailed how his 15-year-old daughter had been raped and sodomized in the girls’ bathroom by a boy wearing a skirt. Shockingly, it also emerged that the school board, which had denied that the girl had been attacked, actually knew that she had and quietly sent the boy to another school, where he allegedly attacked another victim. (The NYPost’s Miranda Devine, writing with a moral compass shared by too few columnists, has been telling this story with Upton Sinclair-caliber perfection.)

So why on earth would Senator Cortez Masto, who has been trying to tack to the center ahead of a tough election, embrace a struggling gov candidate who’s associated with a can’t-win social issue? Naturally, we asked her, but as of publication, the Globe has not heard back. (This story will be updated if Cortez Masto responds.)

This is especially mysterious given Cortez Masto’s own vulnerability on this topic.

In a post-midnight vote on August 11, Sen. Cortez Masto voted against Senate Amendment No. 3680, which would “prohibit the teaching of critical race theory in prekindergarten programs and elementary and secondary schools.” The amendment still managed to pass, 50-49, though it faces an uncertain future.

Fundraising is a difficult task. The candidate has to project both strength (donors don’t like to back losers) and vulnerability (or why bother giving?). In yesterday’s Cortez Masto-McAuliffe mailer, the senator lays out three reasons for the latter, including “The Cook Political Report just downgraded my chances of winning – just as CNN is calling Nevada a top pickup opportunity for Republicans.”

That Cook report downgrade has got to be music to the ears of the GOP campaigns of Adam Laxalt and Sam Brown. But just as encouraging to them might be the seeming misstep of the Cortez Masto campaign attaching itself to a Virginia Democrat who seemingly can’t get out of his own way.

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One thought on “Cortez Masto Courts Supporters of Virginia’s Terry McAuliffe

  1. A little off topic…. but …Winsome Sears – Republican Candidate for Virginia lieutenant governor – certainly looks like a rising star.

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