Along with conveying their distinct dislike of career politicians, voters seem increasingly intent on delivering another pointed message to candidates: They’re not necessarily impressed with wealthy businesspeople-turned-politicians, either.
It’s a sentiment that helped fuel the defeat of Ned Lamont in the Democratic gubernatorial primary and Republican House hopeful Mark Greenberg in Connecticut on Tuesday and the losses last week of two wealthy Republican House hopefuls in Kansas and Tennessee.
In those races, the candidates, who rank among this year’s biggest self-funders, spent a combined $15 million of their personal wealth to elevate their campaigns and wound up being dragged down because of the way they earned or spent it.
Lamont, who sunk about $9 million into his race, was hobbled by questions about a racial discrimination lawsuit filed against his company and ridiculed for claims that he’d brought “hundreds and hundreds” of jobs to Connecticut. His opponents’ research teams put the jobs number at something closer to ‘tens and tens.’