Monday, April 29, 2024

Third Way's Secret Battle to Stop No Labels

Here is more from NBC:

Once upon a time, before the multimillion-dollar negative campaigns and allegations of running “a conspiracy to commit extortion, voter intimidation, and other criminal behavior,” they were friends. Good friends.

The people who run No Labels and Third Way, two of the most prominent centrist organizations in Washington, had all come up together in the small world of Clinton-era center-left politics.

Nancy Jacobson, an early Bill Clinton hire and the founder of No Labels, helped raise the initial money and secure the necessary political blessings to start Third Way. The think tank was co-founded by Jon Cowan, whom Jacobson viewed as something of a mentee. Cowan, now Third Way's president, even signed the ketubah (the Jewish wedding contract) at Jacobson's wedding to Mark Penn, whose firm conducts No Labels’ polls.

Then came the 2024 election — and No Labels’ decision to try to field a bipartisan “unity ticket” against both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, backed by a reported budget of $70 million. Third Way, which may be centrist but is firmly Democratic, viewed this as a misguided, no-hope effort that could only spoil the election for Biden and help to re-elect Trump, with potentially disastrous consequences.


The article notes that No Labels was so incensed by the anti-No Labels campaign that the group lodged a complaint the the US Justice Department, accusing them of violating anti-racketeering laws.

It also says that Third Way lost a board member who sided with No Labels, and its leaders received word from several unhappy donors that they should not expect any more funding.