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Tim Donnelly speaking at #BuildtheWall Rally at the US/Mexico Border. (Tim Donnelly for Congress)
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Donnelly Doubles Down, Attacks Cook and Disses Cox

Republican Challenger to Republican Incumbent Burnishes Right-Wing Cred

By Laura Hauther, October 17, 2018 9:01 am

Tim Donnelly speaking at #BuildtheWall Rally at the US/Mexico Border. (Tim Donnelly for Congress)

What do you do when you’re way behind in the polls with the election only a few weeks away, the attacks are getting personal, and your ideological Doppelganger has endorsed your opponent? The Trumpian way would be to double down on your positions and rhetoric, and Tim Donnelly, the Republican currently trailing incumbent Paul Cook (R-Calif.) for the District 8 House seat, certainly has.

In an email to supporters sent on October 12th, Donnelly goes through his picks for the November California ballot. Most are not surprising, but political affiliation doesn’t  automatically merit a ringing endorsement from Donnelly. The best he can say about Republican Jon Cox in the gubernatorial race is “He’s not Gavin Newsom.”

But when faced with a double Democratic ticket in the Senate race, he lets the Trumpian insults fly: “Never thought I’d advocate for a Democrat, but Feinstein is less evil than Kevin ‘half my family is here illegally’ de Leon.”

Republican Mark Mauser gets Donnelly’s support for Secretary of State, as Donnelly takes incumbent Alex Padilla to task for “working hard to normalize voter fraud by illegal aliens.” Donnelly says he doesn’t believe Padilla’s assurances that none of the people mistakenly registered by the DMV under his watch were in the country illegally. If Donnelly gets elected, he plans to introduce a bill to require voter ID in all federal elections and regular audits to remove voters deemed ineligible from voter rolls.

Donnelly links to a Breitbart article he wrote about voter fraud in January 2017 defending Trump’s claims of massive voter fraud in California during the presidential election. The article shows what Donnelly says is a screen shot of official voter registration policy issued by Padilla on how to handle voter registration cards where no check in the box affirmed citizenship.

“If the voter does not check the ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ box and the registration is otherwise complete, the registration should be processed normally and entered on the voter rolls.”

Donnelly provides a link to the document he claims he quoted from. While the policy might have changed in light of recent reports, the document he links to actually says this: “If the voter does not check either “Yes” or “No” box do not process the registration.”

His Breitbart article also claims “California has intentionally created a recipe for voter fraud on a massive scale” through the New Motor Voter Act requiring “everyone who has a California Drivers (sic) License to be ‘automatically’ registered to vote – including illegal aliens.” And, he says, anyone who dares challenge this will be met with Alinsky-esque suppression tactics of shame and ridicule.

Some of Donnelly’s red-meatiest rhetoric is saved for his take on the ballot propositions:

* Prop 1, the $4 billion housing bond for homeless vets gets a “NO.” A surprising position for a candidate who bills himself as an ultra-patriot who is adamantly pro-vet. But the bill says funds will also assist “farm workers” and Donnelly says “that’s code for illegal aliens.” He goes on to explain “If we’d simply deport the illegal aliens, cut off any and all taxpayer-funded benefits to them, perhaps we wouldn’t have to borrow money to take care of homeless vets.”

*Prop 3, the water bond, rates a “HELL NO.” Donnelly feels the government has enough money but they’re “letting all the water flow out to the sea for the benefit of a stupid little bait fish.” (Stupid little bait fish are food for the big fish humans eat.)

* Prop 4 gets a “NO” because as Donnelly insists “It is not the obligation of taxpayers to subsidize another $1.5 Billion in funding to ‘non-profit’ anything, let alone children’s hospitals. Most non-profits raise their own funds…”

* Prop 5 is a “YES” just for reducing taxes, even if schools (those pesky kids again!) and local governments would lose over $100 million which Donnelly approves on the grounds it means “Less money for the Gov’t to interfere with your life.”

* Prop 6, the gas tax repeal, gets a “HELL YES.” There may be good reasons to be against this tax that pushes California’s gas prices to some of the highest in the nation but for Donnelly it’s about taking citizen’s money back from “Gov. Jerry Brown and his merry band of Marxist Democrats” who he believes “wasted all of our infrastructure money on freebies for their biggest supporters – Gov’t unions and illegal aliens.”

* Prop 9…doesn’t exist. Remember Tim Draper’s vision of California as three separate states? California’s Supreme Court decided it wasn’t a valid proposition. If it had made it on the ballot, Donnelly would be a solid YES. He thinks “California is creeping toward some sort of civil unrest due to the continual oppression of the basic, natural rights of the people to govern themselves.”

* Prop 10, the rent control initiative, gets an unsurprising ‘HELL NO” for unsurprising reasons: “This is another assault on private property rights – an anathema to the Marxist who control California.” Donnelly is not alone in thinking the free market is “perfectly capable of determining pricing” but not everyone sees a Marxist cabal behind it. He also doesn’t offer any solutions for California’s steeply rising rents and the increase of homeless in our streets.

Incumbent Rep. Cook doesn’t seem to take Donnelly’s opposition particularly seriously; in an email to California Globe, Cook’s campaign manager Matt Knox writes Donnelly off as just an “unemployed, two-time convict …. When he’s not busy running for office election after election, Donnelly uses his time to scam senior citizens out of their retirement savings.” Knox is referring to accusations that Donnelly is failing to repay a loan from 75-year-old supporter Anna McBride.

If Donnelly “had an ounce of integrity,” Knox wrote, “he would get a job and repay his victims. In the meantime, Paul Cook will continue to support the President’s agenda to lower taxes, strengthen security along the border, and rebuild our military.”

Laura Hauther

Laura Hauther is a veteran reporter for KPFK and has written for several LA weekly newspapers.
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