Trump Endorsement Helps and Hurts Geoff Diehl [OPINION]
Republican Geoff Diehl is off to face another Goliath in our latest installment of How the Massachusetts Political Cesspool Swirls. Diehl fought a courageous battle against Elizabeth Warren for the U.S. Senate in 2018 and might have won had the state and national Republican parties sent him a few bucks and a little help.
Now, Diehl is ready to challenge the fake Republican Governor Charlie Baker to force a party primary in next year's gubernatorial election.
You may recall that Baker didn't help Diehl very much in his bid to unseat Warren. After endorsing Diehl's candidacy Baker told reporters he wasn't sure if he would vote for Diehl. You see, Diehl helped to run the Trump campaign here in Massachusetts in 2016, and like all RINO Republicans, Baker doesn't like Trump.
But Diehl didn't back down. Unlike Baker, Diehl is a true conservative Republican and doesn't seek to kumbaya with the progressive liberals to win. Like Trump, Diehl believes in the "America First" conservative agenda and is willing to fight for it. Baker, on the other hand, embraces the progressive policies that put America last.
Trump recognizes that Baker is a weak Republican who would rather play footsie with progressives than fight for the American people. In his endorsement of Diehl, Trump calls him a "true patriot, a believer in low energy costs and our independent energy policy." Trump says Diehl is "strong on crime, election integrity, our now under siege southern border, loves our military, loves our military, and has a big focus on taking care of our vets."
In a red state somewhere, an endorsement from Trump would be like hitting the lottery for a political candidate. How does it help here in blue Massachusetts? It doesn't if progressives are your target, and admittedly there are oodles of them here. But if you are an independent voter or a Republican still smarting from the disappointment of two terms of Charlie Baker, it can help a lot.
While Trump's endorsement might not do much to win Democrat support, we are talking about a Republican primary, should Baker opt to run again, so Democrat support doesn't matter so much just yet. Although in Massachusetts, voters can cross party lines in the primaries. Diehl's presence in the race might force Baker to run to the right and that could alienate some Democrats who might want to support him. Trump's support could help Diehl to win the party's nomination.
In a general election against a Massachusetts progressive Democrat, Diehl and Trump would have a fair shot at convincing all voters that the country has drifted too far to the radical left and that it is time for a change.
I think Trump's endorsement can help and hurt Diehl at various stages of the process going forward. The unanswered questions in all of this are:
A) What will Baker do?
B) How bad will things get under Joe Biden?
I guess only time will tell.
Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.