Michael Wager is a Democrat running for Ohio’s 14th Congressional District. He is without a primary opponent, but has decided that he would like to run against Matt Lynch in the general election. In a throwback to the 2012 election cycle when Senator Claire McCaskill did her bidding for her reelection by wading into the GOP Primary to promote Akin’s conservative credentials, Michael Wager is playing the role of McCaskill and Lynch is Akin.
McCaskill faced a tough reelection and picked the candidate she felt was the weakest and ran ads about him in the GOP primary cycle. She highlighted things about Akin which would typically rate high for the traditional Republican primary voter. Wager is doing the same thing today by running an ad highlighting some things he feels would appeal to Republican primary voters.
David B. Cohen, a political scientist at the University of Akron said,
“Wager would have a much better shot against Lynch in the 14th district,” said Cohen. “Many independent voters and moderate Republicans in the 14th would be uncomfortable voting for a candidate as far right as Lynch in the general election and Wager’s campaign knows that. Those voters would either vote for Wager or stay home – either way a bonus for Wager.”
According to Lynch’s facebook page, he seems to think Wager is afraid of him. But, it’s the opposite of this. Wager recognizes that in a general election, Lynch as a vulnerable target in this more moderate district, which is has a Cook Partisan Voting Index of +4.
Akin blundered his way to defeat in the general election, sending McCaskill back to the Senate. By involving himself in the Republican Primary, Wager is attempting to do the same in the 14th Congressional District.