Dem Operative David Brock To Launch Attack On Republican Election Lawyers: “make them toxic in their communities and in their firms”
Goal: “not only bring the grievances in the bar complaints, but shame them and make them toxic in their communities and in their firms.”… “You’re threatening their livelihood. And, you know, they’ve got reputations in their local communities.”
If you want to understand why our politics is so poisonous, a good place to start would be the career of David Brock, who has pursued the politics of personal destruction more relentlessly and over a longer period of time than just about anyone else.
We first covered Brock in 2011 when the organization he founded, Media Matters for America, declared war on Fox News, Media Matters Plans “Guerrilla Warfare and Sabotage” on Fox News And Conservative Websites:
If you had any doubt that Media Matters — which just received an infusion of money from George Soros — is the most dangerous and intolerant media group in the nation, this piece by Ben Smith at Politico will convince you.
Media Matters, which started as one of the usual-sort of “watchdog” groups (which exist on the left and right) has transformed itself recently into a group devoted towards sabotaging Fox News, Media Matters’ war against Fox:
The liberal group Media Matters has quietly transformed itself in preparation for what its founder, David Brock, described in an interview as an all-out campaign of “guerrilla warfare and sabotage” aimed at the Fox News Channel….
Media Matters, Brock said, is assembling opposition research files not only on Fox’s top executives but on a series of midlevel officials. It has hired an activist who has led a successful campaign to press advertisers to avoid Glenn Beck’s show….
That new hire in 2011 was Angelo Carusone, now Media Matter’s President, who pioneered attacking conservative media not by winning the argument, but by trying to drive away advertisers.
Brock also founded American Bridge, another oppo research outfit, as we covered in 2013, American Bridge to follow even more Republicans around in 2014 and 2016. You didn’t need to be a Republican to incur the wrath of Brock, just someone who opposed the Clintons, as Bernie Sanders found out, Bernie Sanders Meets the Clinton Smear Machine and He’s Furious.
And of course, Resistance to Trump was made for Brock, David Brock Offers Cash for Dirt on Trump.
The leftwing The Nation magazine had a 2017 article that pretty much summed it up, The Poisonous Politics of David Brock:
David Brock is the darling of Democratic Party millionaires and billionaires.
Donald Trump’s inauguration has sparked rallies in defense of Medicare and Medicaid, women’s marches across the country, protests against mass deportations and more. Brock, meanwhile, is using the occasion to convene over 100 deep-pocketed Democratic Party donors to a weekend retreat at Miami’s Turnberry Isle resort for a “Democracy Matters 17” conference. It will be three days of strategy sessions to bolster his multimillion-dollar nonprofit political machine.
Brock’s empire, including Media Matters, American Bridge, ShareBlue, and Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, served as a hit squad for the Clinton campaign last year….
During the Democratic primary, Brock declared that “black lives don’t matter to Bernie Sanders” and called on the septuagenarian Sanders to release his medical records in order to cast aspersions on his health.
In the John Podesta e-mails released by WikiLeaks, Neera Tanden, head of the Center for American Progress, called him a “menace,” and “shady,” while musing whether he was a “Manchurian candidate of the GOP secretly out to tank [Clinton].” Podesta, chair of the Clinton campaign, suggesting Brock was merely an “unhinged narcissist.” …
What Brock offers is a Faustian bargain: We can win, he promises, but only if you are prepared to shed your scruples, principles and ethics and descend into a back-alley gutter fight with the right. One question when you build a political weapon is who aims the gun. Brock is not a man of the left. His institutions are not grounded in the populist-progressive movement. He’s an agent of the Democratic establishment, funded significantly by its biggest donors.
One thing Brock has never lacked is cash to fund his war machine, as this article from a year ago at WaPo described:
The Democratic group American Bridge, which spent about $62 million on ads in 2020 to defeat President Donald Trump, plans to relaunch next month with a new effort aimed at defending the record of President Biden and a nine-figure ad budget to maintain Democratic congressional majorities through the midterm elections.
Former Montana governor Steve Bullock, former Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez and former Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards will join as co-chairs, according to a statement from the group. They will join former Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick, who began advising the group last year.
So, with all that said, that David Brock is organizing and launching an attack on Republican lawyers as a way of legally disarming Republicans in advance of 2022 and 2024 is no surprise. And that he intends to do it by attempting to ruin reputations and livelihoods particularly of less-known Republican lawyers also is no surprise.
Axios reports, High-powered group targets Trump lawyers’ livelihoods:
A dark money group with ties to Democratic Party heavyweights will spend millions this year to expose and try to disbar more than 100 lawyers who worked on Donald Trump’s post-election lawsuits, people involved with the effort tell Axios.
Why it matters: The 65 Project plans to begin filing complaints this week and will air ads in battleground states. It hopes to deter right-wing legal talent from signing on to any future GOP efforts to overturn elections — including the midterms or 2024.
Brock plans to focus on the weakest links:
Details: David Brock, who founded Media Matters for America and the super PAC American Bridge 21st Century and is a Hillary Clinton ally and prolific fundraiser for Democrats, is advising the group….
How it works: The 65 Project is targeting 111 attorneys in 26 states who were involved to some degree in efforts to challenge or reverse 2020 election results. They include lawyers at large national law firms with many partners and clients and lawyers at smaller, regional firms.
- It will air ads in battleground states, including Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
- It also will push the ABA and every state bar association to codify rules barring certain election challenges and adopt model language stating that “fraudulent and malicious lawsuits to overturn legitimate election results violate the ethical duties lawyers must abide by.”
- It plans to spend about $2.5 million in its first year and will operate through an existing nonprofit called Law Works.
Brock told Axios in an interview that the idea is to “not only bring the grievances in the bar complaints, but shame them and make them toxic in their communities and in their firms.”
- “I think the littler fish are probably more vulnerable to what we’re doing,” Brock said. “You’re threatening their livelihood. And, you know, they’ve got reputations in their local communities.”
Ed Morrissey at Hot Air sees this as Brock creating an electoral distraction, but also a vicious campaign of personal destruction:
This effort, however, pursues character assassination of “littler fish” not out of a sense of justice but as a political machination in service of Biden. It’s a cynical manipulation of the legal system for some small measure of political benefit, and probably mostly futile anyway as voters simply won’t care. To the extent it has any impact at all, it will be to convince attorneys not to take on political candidates as clients — and that may wind up backfiring on some of the 65 Project’s allies, with one Hillary Rodham “Wiped With A Cloth” Clinton a poster girl for that point. Or for that matter, also one Hunter “Where’s My Laptop?” Biden, too. The payback on this kind of campaign would be scorched-earth all the way around.
The right to legal counsel is a benchmark of American justice, and with that comes a corollary that we don’t judge attorneys by their clients. In fact, we’ll hear Democrats make that same point with Ketanji Brown Jackson, who worked as a public defender and most likely had to work on behalf of a few creeps along the way. Should we have disbarred Brown Jackson over her client list, or should we recognize that she performed her job for her clients as we expect in this justice system?
Attacking attorneys because they worked for Trump directly attacks that principle. Even if the 65 Project can scrape up legitimate ethics complaints about these “littler fish,” their clear intent to whip up a witch hunt for the political benefit of desperate Democrats makes this a poisonous and corrosive campaign. Considering the people behind it, the “poisonous and corrosive” qualities are not a surprise, either.
Something I find interesting is that Brock used to be all over cable news, but there are almost no videos of him on cable in the past 3-4 years. American Bridge has started posting videos of Brock on cable news in recent weeks, but they all are old videos. Why would American Bridge be flooding the YouTube search results with old David Brock videos?
But as the rollout of the attacks on Republican lawyers shows, while Brock may come across as more sedate, the objectives and methods haven’t changed.
Brock has identified a weakness in the Republican landscape, a weakness I’ve noted before. The Democrats, both mainstream and far left, have an enormous legal activist infrastructure on a scale that dwarfs the Republican side. So if Brock can intimidate Republican lawyers not to risk their livelihoods by challenging election law changes, practices, and results, that’s a strategic advantage.
If people and their families suffer, they are simply collateral damage in yet another David Brock war.DONATE
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