According to Molly Redden at Mother Jones, several Republican “superdonors” — foremost among them, a Nevada hypnotherapist who believes he can “heal” the trauma of rape and incest victims so long as they don’t get “mileage” out of having been victimized — are convinced that they can pick up Senate seats in Oregon because races there are relatively inexpensive.
“You could dump money here which would be insignificant in some races, but not in Oregon,” Len Bergstein toldMother Jones. “And I’m sure there’s some Republican gnome somewhere in a basement in Virginia figuring out that for X amount of money, hey, we could have a pickup here.”
A political novice named Monica Wehby hopes Bergstein is correct, as she seeks the GOP nomination to challenge Democratic incumbent Jeffery Merkley on a platform based on her opposition to Obamacare. She will skip the primary’s only televised debate and plans on avoiding contact with the media, relying instead on six-figure contributions from donors to drum up support for her campaign.
One of her benefactors — Loren Parks, of Nevada — has already contributed $75,000 to the political action committee called “If He Votes Like That in Salem Imagine What He Will Do in Congress,” which has financed a number of attack advertisements against her Republican primary opponent, state Representative Jason Conger.
Parks also contributed $50,000 to the Taxpayers Association of Oregon PAC, which on Tuesday released a poll — the accuracy of which has been questioned — indicating that Wehby had a substantial, 21-point lead over Rep. Conger.
The involvement of Parks in the Wehby campaign has upset many within Oregon, who see Parks as an out-of-state opportunist trying to poach a Senate seat. They are also concerned with associating the GOP brand with Parks, who hosts a YouTube series in which he claims to be able to cure women of sexual dysfunction via hypnotherapy.
In the past, he has claimed that he can heal the trauma of rape and incest so long as the victim is not “getting mileage out of it, if you’re getting status, satisfaction from telling your story again and again.” In that video, he claimed that when he “sound[s] the buzzer and say[s] ‘Disconnect,’ it will disconnect you completely from all the emotional upset related to the incest or rape experience that you totally want to get rid of.”
He then sounds a loud, annoying buzzer and yells “Disconnect!” three times:
Another contributor to political action committees supporting Wehby’s campaign is Andrew Miller, a lumber mill owner who contributed $31,000 to the If He Votes Like That in Salem Imagine What He Will Do in Congress PAC. Late last month, The Oregonianreported that Miller is dating candidate Wehby, a situation which — if true — would raise questions about illegal coordination between candidate and super-PAC.
Scott Eric Kaufman is the proprietor of the AV Club's Internet Film School and, in addition to Raw Story, also writes for Lawyers, Guns & Money. He earned a Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of California, Irvine in 2008.
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