Going into the U.S. mid-term elections, polling organizations continue to report that the economy, rising prices of food and gasoline, and increasing violent crime are top concerns of likely voters. The differences between Democrat and Republican candidates on these and other topics have never been more apparent, with voters increasingly leaning Republican with the realization that Democrat policies are the causes of many of their concerns.
Americans have learned in the closing weeks of the 2022 election campaign that Republican candidates—many of whom are first-time America First candidates and non-politicians—are the most interesting in this election cycle, too, as their charisma, poise, speaking ability, intelligence, command of the issues, and ability to directly connect with voters have been on display in numerous campaign stops, media interviews, and debates (when their Democrat opponents have reluctantly acquiesced to them).
Democrat candidates, on the other hand, have generally proven unable to defend the policies of the Biden administration and Democrat-controlled Congress that are directly responsible for skyrocketing inflation, an upside-down energy policy, and societal decay.
Let us examine some of the most interesting Republican outsider candidates this election cycle.
Kari Lake. A former long-time newscaster familiar to most Arizonans, America Firster Kari Lake, who has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump, has been on fire in her campaign for governor against the George Soros-backed Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs. The Arizona Republic reported on Oct. 18 that CNN interviewer Dana Bash caught Hobbs out in a lie in claiming that “Kari Lake isn’t willing to do one-on-one interviews.” And with Hobbs refusing to debate Lake, even legacy media such as USA Today grudgingly report that Lake has all the momentum and complete command of the issues. She speaks from direct experience with a message that the media are corrupt, and that she is standing up to “institutional power.” Telegenic, charismatic, and unwilling to accept the premises of gotcha questions from the media, she is a force to be reckoned with and tops the list of “most interesting candidates” this election cycle. She is currently pulling away from Hobbs in the closing days of the campaign.
Blake Masters. A venture capitalist and neophyte political candidate, Blake Masters has been endorsed by Trump in his campaign against Democratic incumbent U.S. Senator Mark Kelly. Masters has all the qualities sought by voters: on the right side of the issues, smart, articulate, and combative, as Kelly discovered during their debate on Oct. 7. Breitbart reported that Masters “smoked” Kelly “on the issues of border security, inflation, abortion, and big-tech censorship in a clear-cut [debate] victory.” Kelly has outspent Masters by a factor of 10 to 1 ($54 million to $5 million as of July), yet Masters is within the margin of error and has the momentum and a clear shot to beat Kelly.
JD Vance. Venture capitalist and first-time candidate JD Vance is another Trump-endorsed Republican who has been taking it to his opponent—career politician Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio)—in the U.S. Senate race in Ohio. The Washington Examiner reported that “sparks flew” during their debate on Oct. 17, noting that Vance tied Ryan directly to the Democrats’ inflationary spending bills (Ryan has voted with Democrat Party leadership 100 percent of the time), with Ryan even trying to claim credit for the “Inflation Reduction Act”—as if the name itself could convince people that the Act will indeed reduce inflation when the result will be the opposite. Ryan appears to have an “enthusiasm gap,” as Breitbart reported a turnout of 19 solitary souls at a Town Hall on Oct. 25. Vance is up 2 percent with the momentum.
Dr. Oz. Longtime TV personality Dr. Oz (“America’s doctor”) is another Trump-endorsed candidate who is running for political office for the first time against Democrat politician John Fetterman in the race for a U.S. Senate seat in Pennsylvania. The charismatic Oz has considerable notoriety, having earned an Emmy as the host of the long-running “The Dr. Oz Show” on television. While he has taken controversial positions on some issues, for example, support for red flag gun laws, the contrast with the far-left Fetterman is stark. As more has become known about both, Oz made a “miracle comeback” to a dead heat in the polls, as noted here by the New York Post. And Oz will likely catapult to a commanding lead as Fetterman continues to disintegrate after his medically challenged debate performance on Oct. 25. TGP reported this Fetterman gibberish in response to a question from the moderator about how raising the minimum wage might put some small business owners out of business:
“We all have to make sure that everyone that works is able to that’s the most American bargain, that if you work full time, you should be able to live in dignity as well. True. And I believe they haven’t had any businesses. You can’t have businesses being subsidized by not paying individuals that just simply can’t afford to pay their own way.”
What incoherent nonsense! Watch for Oz pulling away as Pennsylvania voters digest Fetterman’s disastrous debate showing.
Hershel Walker. Hershel Walker’s football achievements are well known by Georgia voters (and a lot of other Americans!): three-time All-American running back at the University of Georgia, winner of the 1982 Heisman Trophy, an inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1999, and an All-Pro running back in the NFL. Trump-endorsed Walker is running in his first race for political office versus far-left incumbent Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.). Warnock voted in lockstep with Democrats over the last two years and blames inflation on “corporations,” as opposed to inflationary government spending bills passed by the Democrat-controlled Congress, as noted here. Democrats were shocked by Walker’s trouncing of Warnock during their debate on Oct. 14, with this accusation by Walker to the pro-choice pastor (!), electrifying Georgia voters and possibly sealing his election victory:
“So, if black lives matter, why are you not protecting those babies? And instead of aborting those babies, why are you not baptizing those babies?”
While RealClearPolitics poll averages show the race in a statistical tie, the momentum is clearly with Hershel Walker, as the reliable Trafalgar poll has him up by 2 percentage points.
America First Versus the Michigan Coven
Three far-left Democrat women are running for reelection in statewide races in Michigan. Their opponents are all attractive America First Republican candidates who have been debating and polling well on the issues.
Tudor Dixon. Trump-endorsed Tudor Dixon is a first-time candidate running against incumbent Democrat Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who is known for locking down nursing homes during the pandemic, as well as for the failed kidnapping operation hatched by the FBI. According to Breitbart, Dixon made a “strong showing” in the gubernatorial debate on Oct. 13, calling out Whitmer “for the state’s promotion of sex and gender theory to young children, which, coupled with the pandemic-era school closures, resulted in Michigan children having ‘incredibly low reading scores.’” Dixon was on the right side of this and other issues throughout the debate. RealClearPolitics polling averages have the race within the margin of error, with Dixon having the momentum since the debate.
Matt DePerno. Attorney Matt DePerno has been involved in election integrity lawsuits in Michigan (Antrim County). A first-time candidate, Trump-endorsed DePerno is running against Democratic incumbent Attorney General Dana Nessel, who has virtually ignored evidence of election fraud in 2020, as well as the recent bombshell disclosures making national news about the Chinese Communist Party-connected Konnech Corporation, a Michigan-based software company accused of illegally storing personal information of nearly a million election workers on a server in communist China. Nessel has refused to debate DePerno, as reported here, perhaps because she wishes to avoid discussion of election integrity issues in Michigan, or maybe “because she knows that she can’t defend her lackluster record of rising crime and demanding for a drag queen in every school,” as DePerno stated in response to her refusal to debate. Yet another incumbent Democrat who is wrong on the issues is being exposed.
Kristina Karamo. Charismatic educator and political activist Kristina Karamo has given electrifying speeches at Trump rallies and other venues during her campaign against incumbent Democrat Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. A neophyte candidate but gifted speaker, the African-American blasted Benson and the “hypocrisy of Democrats” during a Trump rally speech on Oct. 2. Karamo accused Benson of fighting a court case demanding that Soros-backed Benson remove dead people from Michigan’s voter rolls (see video here).
Other Candidates of Interest
There are a number of other very attractive America First candidates running for office across the United States. Many are first-time candidates with unique stories and messages that resonate with voters. That they are in general running against longtime Democrat incumbents who are struggling to defend Democrat policies that have inflicted high inflation, economic turmoil, and social divisiveness on Americans everywhere has led to some tight races and potentially shocking upsets in the making.
Tiffany Smiley. First-time Republican candidate Tiffany Smiley is giving far-left U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) a run for the money in Washington state. Murray is a 5-term career politician whose complete support for the Biden administration spending bills and left-wing social issues has rankled many voters. The result is a very close race, with the potential for a major upset in the making by the telegenic and articulate Smiley, as noted by Fox News here.
BG Don Bolduc, USA. Trump-endorsed Gen. Don Bolduc is a first-time Republican candidate running against incumbent Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) in New Hampshire. The 33-year Army special forces veteran “crushed” Hassan during their debate on Oct. 18, according to Breitbart: “Hassan was put on the hot seat when Gen. Bolduc said the top issue in the Senate race is ‘inflation, inflation, inflation,’ which he said was driven by bad energy policies the Democrats created by waging an ideological war on American energy.” RealClearPolitics rates the race a tossup, with Bolduc surging in the final days of the campaign. This could be another shocking upset of a Democrat incumbent.
Joe Kent. A 20-year U.S. Army veteran and a Gold Star husband with CIA experience, Trump-endorsed Kent is another charismatic first-time America First candidate vying for the 3rd Congressional District in Washington state. His opponent is far-left Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, who has supported Antifa in the past.
Tina Forte. First-time candidate Tina Forte is running against far-left Democrat Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York’s 14th Congressional District. AOC may be wearing out her welcome in the Bronx, where she was recently heckled at a town hall, as reported by Fox News here. Forte is well-known in the Bronx while AOC is almost never seen in her district. What an upset this one would be if AOC is “sent home” on Nov. 8!
Mayra Flores. First-time Republican candidate Mayra Flores shocked Democrats by winning a special election in June for the U.S. House seat in Texas’s 34th Congressional District, a seat long held by Democrats. The photogenic and articulate Trump-endorsed candidate is favored to hold her seat on Nov. 8 against Democrat candidate Vicente Gonzalez, as reported here.
JR Majewski. A first-time Trump-endorsed candidate, JR Majewski is giving the longest-serving Democrat woman in U.S. Congress a real battle for Ohio’s Congressional District. America First Majewski’s stance on the issues makes him a perfect foil for Democrat Marcy Kaptur, who has voted for all of the Democrats’ inflationary spending bills and has a lifetime rating of 11.85 out of 100 from CPAC’s Center for Legislative Accountability, as reported here. Democrat-friendly leftwing media have expressed great concern that Majewski may upset Kaptur on Nov. 8, as noted here and here.
The ubiquitous investigative journalists at Project Veritas recently exposed a 2022 Democrat political strategy. In this report, Becky Hobbs, the twin sister of Katie Hobbs, the Democrat candidate for governor in Arizona, disclosed that the Democrats poured money into various primary races to elevate certain MAGA candidates, believing that they would be easier to defeat during the general election.
The Republican candidates discussed above are about to turn that Democrat strategy on its head because they are on the right side of the issues about which voters care most this year. These outsiders are indeed the most interesting candidates this election season.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.