On December 12, four female Republican congressional candidates, including Beth Van Duyne running for Texas’ 24th Congressional District, announced their creation of a “conservative squad” to counter the far-left, progressive Democrat “squad” in Congress.
In October, Jessica Taylor, a congressional candidate from Alabama, stated what she saw as a need for conservative leadership willing to challenge Democrat socialists in Congress.
In a campaign video, Taylor specifically called out Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) saying she was “tired of arrogant socialists like AOC who have never even run a lemonade stand telling us how we should live in Alabama.”
Rep. Ocasio- Cortez along with progressive Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) gained public attention in 2018 after dubbing themselves the “squad,” following statements from President Trump telling the four women of color to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.”
The Democratic squad has also faced challenges from their own party, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), for their advancement of socialist and far-left policy proposals compared to more moderate Democrats.
In an interview on Fox and Friends, Taylor announced the creation of the “conservative squad” alongside candidates Michelle Fischbach of Minnesota, Nancy Mace of South Carolina, and Beth Van Duyne of Texas.
Like a scene out of Mean Girls, Rep. Omar issued a statement via Twitter following the “conservative squad’s” announcement that read, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”
“This is not your grandfather’s GOP anymore,” Mace said in a statement of her own about the newly formed coalition.
Before announcing her intentions to run for Texas’ 24th Congressional District, Beth Van Duyne served as the first female mayor of Irving.
Listed as one of three “toss-up” districts by Politico going into the 2020 elections, Van Duyne will square off against six other Republicans in the primary: Sunny Chaparala, David Fegan, Jeron Liverman, Desi Maes, Deanna Metzger, and Michael Moates.
Eight Democratic candidates are also running to fill the seat left by retiring Congressman Kenny Marchant.
The Cook Partisan Voting Index ranks the 24th Congressional District as R+9.
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Sarah McConnell is a reporter for The Texan. Previously, she worked as a Cyber Security Consultant after serving as a Pathways Intern at the Department of Homeland Security – Citizenship and Immigration Services. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Texas A&M as well as her Master of Public Service and Administration degree from the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M. In her free time, Sarah is an avid runner, jazz enthusiast, and lover of all things culinary.