South Carolina GOP leaders have urged voters to cast their vote for Senator Bernie Sanders whom they believe is the weakest Democratic candidate that Trump could easily defeat in the general election.
The Republican plan to impact the Democratic race, emerging just weeks before the “First in the South” primary, has two goals: Boost the candidate who the Republicans believe presents the weakest general election threat to President Donald Trump and pressure Democrats to support closing state primaries in the future.
South Carolina has open primaries, meaning voters do not have to register by party and can participate in either party’s contest. But some conservative activists have long pushed to change that, arguing it would ensure a more pure party process, and they are hoping this effort will win over Democrats to that cause.
“Bernie Sanders is the most socialistic, liberal candidate running in the Democratic presidential preference primary,” Leupp told The Post and Courier. “So we feel we can make a strong point that our Democratic state legislators need to help work to close our primaries so it protects them as well as the Republican brand.”
The plan to interfere in SC’s Democratic primary is based on Rush Limbaugh’s divisive Operation Chaos that he concocted in 2008. In 2008, Limbaugh encouraged GOP voters to vote for Hillary Clinton as opposed to Barack Obama to create division within the Democratic Party and keep HRC in the race.