The Pro-Impeachment Movements New Play: Frame McConnell as a Trump Patsy


The leading pro-impeachment group in the country unveiled a new ad on Tuesday morning targeting Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as a patsy for Donald Trump. 

The Need to Impeach ad is part of a $3.1-million ad buy that the group has purchased to blanket the airwaves and social-media networks as a Democratic-led impeachment inquiry ramps up.

But whereas the previous spots went after vulnerable Republican senators, this one goes after the man at the nexus of impeachment politics—and it does so through Republican-friendly channels. The ad will run predominantly on Fox News, including the network’s morning show, Fox & Friends, of which the president is a religious viewer. 

“Mitch is afraid to cross Donald Trump,” the spot goes. “Just look at what happened to Mitt Romney. So will Mitch defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic? Or protect Trump at all costs?”

The notion that McConnell would bend his position on impeachment to the advertising whims of a group financed by Democratic presidential candidate and liberal donor Tom Steyer is, inherently, far-fetched. But the new spot doesn’t appear to be an effort to move McConnell towards supporting impeachment so much as an attempt to solidify a narrative that the majority leader has to make a choice between protecting the Republican Senate’s majority and standing by the president. 

“I do think it is important to point out how scared to death McConnell is of Donald Trump,” said Kevin Mack, the chief strategist on Need to Impeach. “It seems like he is willing to sacrifice his own members to not incur the wrath of Trump.” 

In addition to the cable-news buys, Mack said that Need to Impeach will also run preliminary digital ads in Kentucky to test out messaging among voters there. Two other ads will begin to run on Kentucky television soon, he said.

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