The chances that Kunce can build up the kind of blue and non-democratic populist support he seeks in order to overcome Hawley in 2024 are slim. But bringing people out and getting them to vote and changing the bogus mythology that Republicans support working class folks is always a productive pursuit.
The campaign ad opens with a shot identified as a landscape view of Lexington, Missouri. A person is running on a road in the landscape. A voice over begins “My name is Lucas Kunce. I’ve done a lot of running in my life, running to stay healthy, running to fight for my country, running to defend democracy.” As shots of the person running gets closer and closer, we can see that it is a man running in a suit and red tie. “Oh, and by the way, that guy you’re looking at, that’s not me.”
At this point the screen freeze-frames as the man running trips and takes a header. “That’s our current U.S. senator, Josh Hawley.”
From there, Kunce reminds the public of Hawley’s cowardly running away from the crowd of insurgents he enjoyed performing fake feats of machismo for just hours earlier. In fact, Hawley, like Ted Cruz before him, has created a transparent narrative of his personal masculinity only contradicted by every single one of his life’s actions.
Kunce then details the stark differences between himself and Hawley. Hawley grew up privileged and worked his way up the Ivy-Leagued corporate ladders of power, while Kunce came from a working-class family, depending on help from his community. Kunce became a Marine while Hawley became a corporate lawyer. Kunce has been open about the need to rein in corporations while Hawley has attacked workers.
Kunce ends the advertisement: ”I’m Lucas Kunce, and I approve this message, because Josh Hawley is a fraud and a coward. And by the time I’m done with him, the whole world’s gonna know it. So keep on running, Josh, keep on running.” It’s not defamation if it’s true.
All good, simple-to-understand stuff. It’s worth a watch.
Kunce is taking the fight directly to the Republican Party.
Kunce and his campaign team have shown themselves to be very adept at putting together strong messaging and uncompromising campaign positions, and it will be interesting to see if other candidates take notice. It may not take Kunce across the finish line in Missouri, but it may help other Democratic candidates find a way to win closer races in the coming years.
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