Liz Warren sounds fundraising alarm over Kid Rock’s potential Senate run
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is sounding the alarm with her Democratic base, warning a Senate run by Detroit bad boy Kid Rock could be the second coming of Donald Trump.
The “Wasting Time” and “All Summer Long” rap rocker-turned-country singer tweeted on Wednesday that he’s running for U.S. Senate in Michigan. Although it’s been largely dismissed so far as a publicity stunt, Warren isn’t taking any chances with the longshot Republican.
“I know a lot of people are thinking: this is some sort of joke, right?” Warren wrote in an email blast with the subject line “Senator Kid Rock (R-MI).”
“Well,” she said, “maybe this is all a joke — but we all thought Donald Trump was joking when he rode down the escalator at Trump Tower and announced his campaign, too.
“And sure, maybe this is just a marketing gimmick for a new album or tour — but we all thought Donald Trump was just promoting his reality TV show, too,” she added.
The Bay State senior senator then links to a fundraising page where donations are split between Michigan Democratic U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow and Warren’s own 2018 re-election campaign.
A Warren campaign spokeswoman did not return repeated inquiries about how much the fundraising appeal has hauled in or the strategy behind it.
But if the effort succeeds, other Democrats are likely to also cash in on a Rock candidacy — remote as it may be — to fill their own campaign coffers, said Larry Sabato, a political science professor at the University of Virginia.
“Political elites and activists who actually give money to campaigns keep up with all this stuff,” he said.
“Plus, the most effective direct mail is often tied to something that just happened — something that can be spun into a threat.”
Republican state Rep. Geoff Diehl, who will officially challenge Warren next month, blasted the email as proof that Warren is more concerned about crafting a bid for the White House.
“She uses any and every issue, whether it’s a celebrity Republican or it’s Hillary Clinton, to try to scare her support base into giving her more money so that she can reach that main goal I believe of running for president … not of focusing on the concerns of her constituents in Massachusetts,” said Diehl.
Rock, 46, whose real name is Robert James Ritchie, insisted in a blog post last night that “it’s not a hoax” and that he plans to be a “voice for tax paying, hardworking AMERICANS and letting politicians like her (Stabenow) know that We the People are sick and tired of their (expletive)!”
Rock has launched a campaign website — kidrockforsenate.com — that mostly sells merchandise, and cycles through campaign slogans, such as “Pimp of the Nation” and in a reference to a “Bawitdaba” lyric, “Get in the Senate and try to help someone.” But he hasn’t filed any paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission.
Still, don’t count him out, said Saul Anuzis, the former chairman of the Michigan Republican Party.
“He’s well-liked,” said Anuzis. “He’s a big proponent of Detroit and somebody who’s put his money where his mouth is investing back home.”