Published June 21, 2022
The new campaign ad from Republican Senate candidate Eric Greitens is beyond reprehensible. It’s a test for whether anything is out of bounds in today’s GOP.
Greitens’s spot is a tacit call to violence. In it, the disgraced former Missouri governor cocks a shotgun and says, “We’re going RINO hunting” (RINO, of course, refers to “Republicans in name only”). He then joins a group of men dressed in tactical gear storming a house, weapons ready to fire. Greitens enters the house and tells the viewer to “join the MAGA crew. Get a RINO-hunting permit. There’s no bagging limit, no tagging limit and it doesn’t expire until we save our country.”
Henry Olsen, a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, studies and provides commentary on American politics. His work focuses on how America’s political order is being upended by populist challenges, from the left and the right. He also studies populism’s impact in other democracies in the developed world.
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