GOP Establishment and Bloomberg Unite to Undermine Trump-Backed Black Pastor in SC Primary


Conservative megadonors are attempting to discredit black pastor Mark Burns, the congressional candidate in South Carolina’s upcoming runoff endorsed by former President Donald Trump, in an effort to boost his establishment-backed opponent. Burns, who has been a vocal supporter of Trump, has been accused of “stolen valor” in attack ads funded by groups such as “Conservatives for American Excellence,” which received at least $3 million from Griffin and $1.5 million from Singer.

The ads claim that Burns lied about serving in the military, citing a 2016 CNN hit piece that has been widely debunked. However, Burns has clarified his service record, stating that he served in the South Carolina Army National Guard for six years and received an honorable discharge. He also accused the group of spreading false information and engaging in “liberal media” tactics to destroy his opponent.

This is not the first time that “Conservatives for American Excellence” has targeted a Trump-backed candidate. The group also attempted to derail a Trump-backed candidate in Texas earlier this year, but ultimately failed. The group’s spending against Burns is part of a larger effort by the donor class to maintain control of the Republican Party and undermine Trump’s influence.

FEC records show that the group has spent mostly against conservative candidates in other congressional races, with little effort to help them in general election capacity against Democrats. This suggests that the group is more focused on maintaining control of the party rather than actually supporting conservative candidates.

Matthew Boyle
Matthew Boyle
Washington Bureau Chief.

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