San Diego -- Carl DeMaio once famously labeled the Tea Party the “conscience of the accountable government movement.” This week brought fresh proof that the affection is mutual and that DeMaio is the Tea Party’s guy.
DeMaio’s Tea Party fans and other far-right supporters are pouring money into the race for the CA-52 Congressional seat. Here is only a partial list of the radical-fringe groups investing in DeMaio’s campaign, according to fundraising reports released Monday:
-- Koch Industries Inc. PAC, the political action committee of the Koch Brothers, who have spent decades advocating extremist positions such as abolishing Medicare and Social Security.
-- Eye of the Tiger PAC, run by Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, a member of the Tea Party Caucus. Scalise also chairs the House Republican Study Committee, the group of right-wing firebrands infamous for “prizing ideological purity.”
-- Voice for Freedom PAC, run by Rep. Tom Price of Georgia, a member of the Tea Party Caucus. Price accused President Obama of a “Chicago-style shakedown” after the President pushed for BP to pay for the Gulf of Mexico clean-up stemming from its disastrous oil spill
-- The Support to Ensure Victory Everywhere PAC, run by Rep. Steve Stivers of Ohio, who in a Tea Party questionnaire once proposed “eliminate(ing) the Departments of Agriculture, Education, Interior, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, Energy and others to return to a constitutionally pure government.”
-- Road to Freedom PAC, run by Rep. Ed Royce of California, a member of the Tea Party Caucus and an opponent of marriage equality.
-- Rep. Sam Johnson of Texas, whose website boasts that he has been “TEA approved by the Texas Tea Party Alliance” and who has pushed for a Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
-- The Lynn Westmoreland for Congress PAC, run by Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia, a member of the Tea Party Caucus and co-sponsor of a 2013 Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
“Clearly the Tea Party recognizes a kindred spirit in Carl DeMaio, which is why they’re investing so heavily in his candidacy,” said Alex Roth, communications director for the Scott Peters for Congress campaign. “The question is what these groups will expect in return if DeMaio is elected to Congress.”
The Koch Brothers have taken an especially keen interest in this race. Their Americans for Prosperity PAC has run more than $145,000 in TV ads against Rep. Peters since October 2013. In no other California Congressional race has this right-wing PAC spent money on TV ads this election cycle.