To do that, Democrats are switching tactics somewhat: Rather than run candidates who are overtly far left and uber-liberal, the party is turning to stealth Marxists like a gubernatorial candidate running next year in Illinois.
A venture capitalist running in Illinois's Republican gubernatorial primary is a relative newcomer to the right. Fifteen years ago, Jesse Sullivan founded a self-described "social justice" magazine that has defended riots and abortion.
Sullivan, a political neophyte who ran a San Francisco-based nonprofit before launching his gubernatorial bid in early September, founded the magazine One World in 2006 while a student at St. Louis University.
The publication had financial support from left-wing groups like the Center for American Progress, whose goal was to "counter the growing influence of right-wing groups on campus." In the years that followed, One World published articles Dismissing riots in Ferguson, Mo., as the work of "a few troublemakers" amid "an entire crowd." Four years later, in 2018, the magazine Expressed Support for the "legal right to choose" to have an abortion.
So in other words, Sullivan isn't even a RINO, he's a far-left Marxist, flat-out, which puts him squarely in the Democrats' camp.
The GOP gubernatorial primary is already heating up in the Land of Lincoln, as three other Republican contenders have announced they plan to try and unseat Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker; the Free Beacon reports that an early GOP favorite is state Sen. Darren Bailey. As for Sullivan, he's trying to put some distance between the magazine and himself in laying out a campaign strategy focused on improving public safety and the right to life.
According to a Sullivan campaign spokesman who spoke to the outlet, the Illinois 'Republican' founded the magazine "when he was in college doing humanitarian work, even though Sullivan remained on its masthead as the magazine's "visionary" for years after his graduation -- a fact that the spokesman dismissed as a role coming with "zero involvement or editorial oversight."
Then again, Sullivan's involvement seems to have endured; he headlined the magazine's 10-year anniversary at a 2016 event, though the spokesman claimed he only appeared "as a courtesy."
"The suggestion that Jesse agrees with the viewpoints of a magazine he has had nothing to do with, is laughable," Sullivan's campaign said in a statement. "Let's get back to the issues at hand and leave the cancel culture to the liberals and political hacks."
Yes, lets, as the Free Beacon notes further:
Since launching his campaign, Sullivan has voiced a number of views that represent an about-face from those expressed in the magazine he founded. He has blasted Democrats for turning the city of Chicago into a "corrupt war zone" and often emphasizes the need to "back the blue," or support the police. He has also rallied supporters against the state legislature's decision to repeal a 1995 law that required parental notification when a minor child receives an abortion.
"I am pro-life, but many of my friends in Illinois that are pro-choice agree that the extreme left has gone too far," said Sullivan in October.
Even Sullivan's campaign financing has ties to the left. He announced his gubernatorial bid in September after receiving $5 million from San Fran billionaire and angel investor Chris Larsen, "who also contributed $500,000 to the California Democratic Party and $250,000 to Nancy Pelosi's House Majority PAC in 2021," the Free Beacon reported.
Larsen has described Sullivan as a "bridge-builder," but again, we'd call him something worse than a 'RINO.'