Members of the media and Democratic activists are castigating the campaign arm of House Democrats for publishing opposition research against a Democratic congressional candidate in Texas.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on Thursday published opposition research on its website against Laura Moser, calling her a "Washington insider" and criticizing her for speaking negatively about Texas, according to press reports.
Moser, who created a text-messaging tool instrumental in channeling progressive anger into activism against President Donald Trump, is running to unseat incumbent Republican Rep. John Culberson in Texas' seventh district near Houston.
"Democratic voters need to hear that Laura Moser is not going to change Washington," the DCCC website says. "She is a Washington insider, who begrudgingly moved to Houston to run for Congress. In fact, she wrote in the Washingtonian magazine, ‘I'd rather have my teeth pulled out without anesthesia' than live in Texas."
"As of January 2018, she [Moser] claimed Washington, D.C. to be her primary residence in order to get a tax break," the DCCC continues. "And she has paid her husband's Washington, D.C. political consulting firm over $50,000 from campaign contributions; meaning 1 of every 6 dollars raised has gone to her husband's D.C. company."
DCCC communications director Meredith Kelly blasted Moser in a statement.
"Voters in Houston have organized for over a year to hold Rep. Culberson accountable and win this Clinton district," Kelly told the Texas Tribune. "Unfortunately, Laura Moser's outright disgust for life in Texas disqualifies her as a general election candidate, and would rob voters of their opportunity to flip Texas' 7th in November."
Democracy for America (DFA), the progressive activist group that endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) for president during the 2016 Democratic primary, slammed the DCCC for attacking Moser, who they have supported since mid-2017.
"The idea that some faceless hacks are calling themselves Democrats while sitting in a D.C. office throwing bombs at a pro-choice Democratic woman in support of a lawyer who built her career at a law firm for union-busters is precisely why Democrats lost over 1,000 elected offices over the last decade," said Annie Weinberg, DFA's electoral director.
Journalists and Democratic activists were quick to blast the DCCC's strategy.
The DCCC should apologize for this bullshit. https://t.co/dSySN4bo5J
— Tommy Vietor (@TVietor08) February 23, 2018
I'm not a disinterested observer here. I know Laura. I don't know the ins and outs of this primary race. I know party committees will often de facto back one candidate. But this strikes me as unbelievable bullshit on the @dccc‘s part. I've never seen anything like it. https://t.co/5mnTpceQtp
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) February 23, 2018
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— Justice Democrats (@justicedems) February 23, 2018
Disappointed and dismayed to see anyone going after a genuine progressive and pro-choice committed leader like Laura. As a fellow Texan, I applaud @lcmoser and her family for striving to represent the people of our great state being harmed right now. https://t.co/OwDhaCjrIr
— ilyse hogue (@ilyseh) February 23, 2018
The slime-buckets at the DCCC are on the warpath against progressive candidates everywhere in the country. You think I'm exaggerating? Look what they're doing to destroy Laura Moser in Houston's #TX07 right in the middle of early voting: https://t.co/Je6Pd6sb39
— Howie Klein (@downwithtyranny) February 23, 2018
The beloved DCCC making money for their cookie-cutter poor performing consultants to do two things: Encourage candidates with access to wealth to raise money for them. And, then…the dccc loses. Over and over and over. Whose party is this? #TimesUp https://t.co/PF1Uth6JD3
— Nomiki Konst 🐴🦄🐴 (@NomikiKonst) February 23, 2018
— ryan cooper (@ryanlcooper) February 23, 2018
— Hector Sigala (@hgsigala) February 23, 2018
— Krystal Ball (@krystalball) February 23, 2018
— Jim Pugh (@dr_pugh) February 23, 2018
Risky move by the DCCC, this could easily backfire and end up strengthening her hold on some parts of the primary electorate. Their analysis may be correct, but this tactic is, well, what’s another word for risky? https://t.co/5RQIyyaaY6
— Chuck Todd (@chucktodd) February 23, 2018
Moser, a Houston journalist, is running against six other Democrats in the March 6 primary to unseat Culberson in November.