Washington, DC – Following the 2022 elections, America’s Voice examined the impact nativist rhetoric had in GOP success across the ballot and found the strategy to be ineffective. In “Stephen Miller is a Loser, GOP’s Investment in Nativism Fails to Deliver…Again,” America’s Voice Political Director Zachary Mueller discusses how the massive financial investment by Miller and others failed to deliver the “red wave” much of the political media predicted would come to pass:
Former President Donald Trump announced his next campaign for President at his Mar-A-Lago resort on November 15, 2022, surrounded by his most dedicated supporters. Among those in the audience was Stephen Miller, who has been by Trump’s side since 2015, and oversaw and implemented Trump’s xenophobic agenda. Much of their hateful rhetoric was again echoed in Trump’s diatribe of an announcement speech. But Miller is no longer just a Trump staffer. This year, he ran one of the largest GOP SuperPACs spewing some of the worst, vile ads from this cycle. And reportedly is giving council to Kevin McCarthy as he plots his path to the Speaker’s office. But Miller, like Trump, was a big loser in 2022.
Miller has been banging the nativist drum for a long time. He was and is convinced his zero-some apocalyptic vision of immigration will rally the GOP base, persuade independents, and depress Democratic turnout. But for most Americans, immigrants are not the existential bogeyman Miller would like us to believe. And his strategy lost big. Again and again and again.
Miller and his goon squad were themselves massive players this cycle, likely spending close to $100 million on vile ads in line with Miller’s election strategy. Their main vehicle was Citizens for Sanity, which ran over $51 million in TV commercials in October. These included aggressive nativist and racist ads during the Major League Baseball playoffs and World Series that shocked and unsettled many viewers and took the hateful message to the rest of the country. Citizens for Sanity spent additional millions on digital ads, billboards, and mailers, hoping their brand of dog-whistle racism would help flip the Senate to Republicans.
It didn’t. And there is evidence that Citizens for Sanity messages worked for their base, but had a backlash effect on key constituents. The Immigration Hub tested a “Citizens for Sanity” ad on crime & immigration with battleground voters and observed a measurable backlash.
The following is a statement from Zachary Mueller, Political Director for America’s Voice:
The 2022 midterms should be the death knell in Miller’s nativist political strategy and should end his career as a political operative or prognosticator. It was given a platform, major candidates across the country adopted it and about $100 million later, it all came up with an ‘L’. Going forward, the GOP should drop this loser. However, that scenario seems rather unlikely. Miller’s nativist first strategy has repeatedly failed to deliver in the past, but Republicans continue to return to this playbook. And if the past is any indication of the future, Miller and his bad ideas will continue to be in the driver’s seat for the GOP throughout the next election.