Sure, sure … you’re a “Principled Conservative.” And the moon is green cheese.
Tara Setmayer announced her exit from the Republican Party in November, 2020.
The Republican party has abdicated their responsibilities and made a mockery of their oaths of office … the party has turned into a party of white grievance, said Setmayer. Hypocrisy, apparently voter suppression is part of the playbook now, no regrets. Authoritarianism seems to be ok, conspiracy theories, racism, misogyny, indecency.
That is something that I no longer want any part of, she added later. I will be an independent now. I’m still a little ‘c’ conservative. My belief system and world view has not changed because the messengers are fallible. But I’ll tell you something right now, my fight moving forward is part of this pro-democracy movement and it’s to do the right thing, because here in America right still matters.
So her “belief system” and “worldview” haven’t changed? Was there any substantive belief at all? The term “All hat and no cattle” comes to mind.
But she DID claim that her Conservative principles were intact:
You know I’m undeterred by the MAGA foolishness.
This here conservative is confident my principles are fully in tact unlike those attacking me for calling it straight about Kanye.
I stand by what I said 100%.
He is uninformed & is being used willfully. 🤷🏽♀️🤨👊🏼 https://t.co/YdyzvdHF0s
— Tara Setmayer 🌻 (@TaraSetmayer) October 11, 2018
Tara’s Twitter timeline is littered with her own claims to “Conservative Principles.” Of course, saying it and demonstrating it are not the same.
It is worth noting that The Lincoln Project website does not mention the word, “Conservative” in her bio. Perhaps a minor point, but does retain a degree of significance. Neither does her CNN profile. Or her Harvard bio.
But wait … The Harry Walker Agency, her speaker’s bureau calls her “A voice of reason for conservatism.”
As a political contributor, Tara appears regularly on CNN’s dayside and prime time programs, provides analysis for Good Morning America, Nightline and has guest hosted The View for ABC. Prior to joining CNN and ABC, she was already a high-profile media commentator, appearing on various national programs including Real Time w/Bill Maher. Tara has also written for Cosmopolitan, The Daily Beast and CNN.com.
NOTE: None of those media organizations appear in the “Conservative” spectrum of news reporting.
One of the elements that most members of the Conservative political space have rebelled against is the controversial subject of “Critical Race Theory.” Much has been said about the subject on both sides of the political aisle, but Tara’s explanation pretty much seems to side with the Liberal view:
Where has Tara Setmayer ever espoused definitive “Conservative” principles? After all, she was in the “Conservative” news space for a while, as evidenced by a few links … here and there.
From a now deleted page at The Blaze, retrieved from the Internet Archive:
Sexton brought in fellow co-host of “Real News From theBlaze” Tara Setmayer to discuss the topic, and she said in an exasperated tone that the president’s [Obama] foreign policy is “like a Saturday Night Live skit.”
Kinda sounds like a Conservative, right?
While good conservatives may have differing viewpoints about some aspects of conservatism, there are certain fundamental principles where we must remain resolute. In fact, at The Heritage Foundation, we call them the True North principles because they represent a fixed direction on which to stay focused, regardless of which ways the forces may be pressuring us.
The federal government is instituted to protect the rights bestowed on individuals under natural law. It exists to preserve life, liberty and property — a mission that includes not only protecting the sanctity of life but defending freedom of speech, religion, the press and assembly, and the right of individuals to be treated equally and justly under the law, and to enjoy the fruits of their labor.
The federal government’s powers should be limited to only those named in the U.S. Constitution and exercised solely to protect the rights of its citizens.
Government functions best when it is closest and most accountable to the people and where power is shared between the federal government and the states.
So is there “conservatism” in Tara’s history, other than the fact she was temporarily in that political space? Let’s ask the Internet…
Other similar sentiments are expressed across the right-wing ecosystem, and perhaps many can be taken with the proverbial “grain of salt.” But if one tries to find any written matter by Tara Setmayer about her “hard and fast” political or cultural positions, the search comes up empty. No books. No white papers. Come on … even PBS referred to her as a “thought leader!”
O.K. – three articles for Cosmopolitan:
• “It’s Time to Admit Things Are Not OK.” – anti-Trump, anti-Republican screed
• “Donald Trump Is Successfully Undermining a Foundation of Our Democracy.” – title says it all
And Two articles for The Daily Beast:
• “Want to Change the System, Trump and Sanders Supporters? Learn How It Works First.” – close, but no cigar.
• “Donald Trump and the Tyranny of the Minority.” – you get the idea.
Evidence that Donald Trump was the turning point…
By 2017, the transition is complete…but she’s still a “Conservative?”
By 2018, Setmayer is clearly camping out in the Liberal media sphere.
Well, I think it’s clear that the Republicans have been cowards to the point they have debased themselves in unprincipled ways that I don’t think a lot of us ever thought was possible to pledge to Trump because they are afraid of losing an election.
And in 2020, the official announcement is made…
Conservative consultant has left the Republican party after 25 years because it has allowed “the malignancy of Trumpism” to continue.
After 25 yrs w/the GOP,I’m done.
As a principled conservative&more importantly,American,I can no longer associate w/a GOP that’s fully embraced the malignancy of Trumpism.
The fight continues b/c here,right still matters🇺🇸#CountryOverParty
— Tara Setmayer 🌻 (@TaraSetmayer) November 5, 2020
2020 is a magical year as Tara joins The Lincoln Project. But those pesky folks at the Washington Free Beacon have some thoughts about Ms. Setmayer’s background.
Before joining the Lincoln Project, Setmayer worked in the office of Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R., Calif.) from 2006 to 2013. An avid supporter of Donald Trump, the congressman has been described as “Putin’s favorite.” Setmayer claims she left Rohrabacher’s office (to go work for Glenn Beck) before the congressman “began taking untenable Russia positions,” but that’s debatable.
Rohrabacher earned his reputation as a Putin apologist long before Trump announced his campaign for president. His pro-Russian bonafides were well established by the time Setmayer began working in his office and became increasingly more pronounced during her tenure.
Rick Wilson, one of the Lincoln Project’s only remaining cofounders, has repeatedly attacked Rohrabacher over the course of his ongoing struggle with social media addiction. “Comrade Dana! How goes the Five Year Beet Harvest Plan?” Wilson tweeted, epically, in response to a photo of Rohrabacher’s appearance on Sean Hannity’s show. He has insinuated the congressman is a Russian spy.
Setmayer did not return a request for comment on whether she has been held sufficiently “accountable” for her multiyear affiliation with America’s foremost Putin stooge.
Of course, everyone … EVERYONE remembers that little “setback” that The Lincoln Project experienced early in 2021…
This is the world of shame, repression, and deceit that Republican political operative John Weaver inhabited for 61 years while posing as a truth-teller and a man of conscience. The former John McCain adviser, co-founder of the anti-Trump Lincoln Project and married father, last month admitted to sending sexual propositions via text and Twitter to numerous young men over the course of several years, sometimes with promises of jobs and professional advancement attached … Weaver’s actions were unprofessional and awful –– a clear abuse of his position and power.
In the ongoing meltdown of the Lincoln Project, however, it’s not John Weaver whose behavior stands out for being the most morally depraved. That badge of dishonor belongs to fellow Lincoln Project co-founder Steve Schmidt, who, precisely at the moment of his former colleague’s personal and professional ruin, decided to revive the calumny associating gay men with pedophilia.
From its founding, the Lincoln Project has been little more than a slickly produced grift aimed at parting gullible liberals from their money. Schmidt joined the operation after his previous political gravy train, the vanity presidential campaign of Starbucks founder Howard Schultz, dissolved like coffee grounds. The Lincoln Project’s “Super PAC” status allowed it to raise and spend unlimited amounts of money, and it amassed nearly $90 million in donations last year.
Happens to everyone! It was just the “growing pains of a quick startup.”
Rest assured that the Lincoln Project takes the scandals currently plaguing them very, very seriously.
Lincoln Project senior adviser Tara Setmayer on a recent episode of “The Breakdown” (which she cohosts with the illustrious Rick Wilson).
She dismisses the serious allegations around sexual harassment and finances as the “growing pains of a startup.”
So what does this “explanation” tell us about the amazing transformation of Tara Setmayer from “Principled Conservative” to 100% Certified TDS Anti-Trump Lincoln Project Grifter and “Senior Advisor?”
Roll the tape on Project Lincoln…
The Lincoln Project, as our regular readers know, is basically a money-grubbing Democrat front group. Not only is it opposed to Donald Trump, but to the very conservative values many of us hold dear. Now, the grifters are being featured in a new Showtime five-part docuseries entitled “The Lincoln Project.”
Showtime says the series “takes viewers inside the war rooms of the wildly successful SuperPAC of former elite Republican strategists and consultants who joined forces for the sole purpose of saving democracy by bringing down Donald Trump.” Well, that’s one way to describe an effort to take down not only Trump but the entire Republican Party, save the likes of Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney.
Honestly, these people are complete bores, aren’t they? Yet somehow, they’ve managed to rake in boatloads of money by pretending to be “reasonable” Republicans, the adults in the room, the saviors of “democracy” (which, in case you haven’t noticed, is a left-wing dog whistle used to denigrate our republican form of government). It’s been obvious since the Lincoln Project launched that the group had found a way to separate Democrats from their money by dumping on Republicans, the party they initially purported to want to “save.
Where conviction is concerned, they’ve gone from frustrated Republicans to dyed-in-the-wool Democrats. The Lincoln Project has full-throatedly endorsed a co-sponsor of the Green New Deal to be the next vice president. Their ads about Biden are indistinguishable from those of a Democratic campaign arm. Their most prominent founder, Rick Wilson, calls Trump supporters “the credulous Boomer rube demo” and worse, including right here in The Daily Beast. Their schtick is no different from an innumerable number of other progressive organizations.
The Lincoln Project’s antics treat the issues that keep everyday conservatives up at night—How will I afford to pay my bills? What will the world look like for my kids?—with disdain, if they address them at all.
What they’ve revealed in doing so is not that conservatives don’t care about these kitchen-table issues, but that this once-powerful collection of GOP operatives does not care about the same issues that animate conservatives. As exit polls made clear following the 2016 Election, President Trump won because of the issues—not for his character or experience or anything else.
For many liberals, the Lincoln Project was a “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” sort of collective, comprised of some of the Republican Party’s most dastardly operators. Wilson, Schmidt and Stevens don’t mince words in The Lincoln Project about their less-than-savory past exploits and mistakes, highlighted by Schmidt’s regret that he was the chief presidential campaign advisor who recommended that John McCain choose Sarah Palin as a running mate—a decision (“Biggest fucking mistake of my entire life and that I will regret until the day I die”) that now looks like a tipping-point moment for the Republican Party toward fascism. Stevens admits that the Lincoln Project is a chance to oppose a “morally bankrupt” and “white grievance” obsessed right-wing movement that he spent his life helping to create, and that sentiment is echoed by many involved, who view their new venture as a means of fixing the very things they broke.
The truth is that the members of The Lincoln Project are not really Republicans at all. They are political grifters who have taken advantage of the Left’s hatred of Trump to rake in millions. As the Washington Examiner notes, “After the election, the [Lincoln Project] plans to expand its brand into a new media network, recently signing with United Talent Agency to build Lincoln Media.” These charlatans not only fail to stand on any principles even remotely consistent with conservative values, but they’re actively opposing those principles. They are better described as traitors to the conservative cause and the Republican Party.
And holy moly, when you’ve lost The Atlantic, well … you be the judge.
The uneven pedigree of this motley crew hasn’t kept mainstream publications from referring to the Lincoln Project as a “conservative PAC.” This misnomer affords the group the privilege of having their cake and eating it too: Coming from Republicans, their attacks may appear fresh, principled, and transpartisan, while remaining stale, unprincipled, and partisan. Like many unhappy former Republicans, the leaders of the project have crossed over from being “never Trump” to being “never Republican,” taking aim even at such GOP moderates as Cory Gardner and Susan Collins. Their most recent ad, called “How a President Leads,” is an unabashed valentine to Joe Biden.
Which is fine! But they’d do better, for the sake of history and intellectual honesty, to leave Lincoln out of it. Lincoln ripened, history shows us, and grew away from the young pol he’d been on the Illinois prairie. The circle of his sympathy expanded, his soul deepened. Such growth is unlikely to overtake the Lincoln Project while it peers obsessively at the object of its hatred. This is an old story: We become what we behold. The project partakes of the spirit of a famous Republican president, all right. But he’s not Lincoln.
I will conclude with the sentiment that there is the remote possibility of a “Semi-Conservative” basis for much of Tara Setmayer’s view of politics and worldview. What I have been unable to obtain on the basis of admittedly casual research is anything that provides an authentic “stamp of approval” on those principles from others in that political space. If she was not associated with The Lincoln Project, a more optimistic case could be made, but at the moment I’m convinced the “Birds Of A Feather” theory holds true. One could probably use this post as a template for any one of the organization’s other “Senior Advisors.”