Cassidy eliminates government ‘wedding gifts’ and parental allowances from campaign site

The newcomer to Mississippi politics in a runoff with incumbent Congressman Guest appears to be making a 180 after social media backlash over possible trillions in new spending.

It was announced Wednesday afternoon that the Republican midterm congressional primary in Mississippi’s 3rd congressional district would be decided in a June 28 runoff. This race will feature outgoing Congressman Michael Guest and Michael Cassidy.

With 99% of constituencies declaring, Cassidy led Guest in the Primary by 287 votes, or 47.5% to 46.9%. Cassidy’s showing took almost everyone by surprise.

After the runoff was determined, political pundits began to dig deeper into Cassidy’s platform, trying to figure out how the relative political newcomer may have pushed a well-known incumbent with deep roots in the state to a second round and where exactly it stands on politics.

Other than Cassidy’s “America First” talking points and his attempt to leverage former President Donald Trump’s slogan for his own campaign, little was known about the Maryland native’s actual political stances.

Questions were raised on social media on Wednesday about Cassidy’s stance on a variety of issues after conservatives began openly digging into his campaign website’s stated political positions. Prominent Mississippi Republicans have openly mused on social media that Cassidy’s positions could result in hundreds of billions, if not trillions, of dollars in new government spending on welfare programs.

When that happened, Cassidy’s team began editing the candidate’s website, attempting to clean up some of what might be considered more liberal and significant government spending.

Cassidy’s “The American Dream” page states that the American Dream has been made progressively more difficult over the past few decades “by terrible politics left and right.”

“We must reduce housing prices, raise wages and encourage family formation,” it read.

To do this, Cassidy offered the following during Primarywho were all deleted Wednesday evening:

– Cassidy initially proposed creating a maternity leave program with five years of benefits.

– Cassidy wanted the government to give the newlyweds a $20,000 wedding gift, refundable if the couple divorces.

– Cassidy wanted the government to give married citizens an allowance of $250/month for children under 10 and $500/month for children 10-17.

From Cassidy for the Congress website 5/6/22

There is now a disclaimer at the top of Cassidy’s “The American Dream” page which reads:

“Based on helpful feedback from many conservatives in the 3rd District, I have enhanced my America Dream policies with a focus on reducing the tax burden for working families with children.”

Here is what was added after removing the above proposals:

– Cassidy is now proposing to expand the current child tax deduction from a maximum of $3,600 to $10,000 for working families not currently receiving government assistance. He says this non-refundable deduction will allow parents to keep more of what they earn and reduce the burden of having and raising children.

– Instead of asking the government to offer a five-year government right, Cassidy is now simply proposing to create a plan to make it easier for companies to offer maternity leave, without any specifics.

Y’all Politics reached out to Cassidy’s campaign early Thursday morning to explain why the posts were removed from the site the day after the primary. Cassidy’s campaign manager Nathan Wright made reference to the candidate Facebook post on the subject, which said:

“I believe that the American family is the lifeblood of our country, and that the family is currently under attack like never before from the Biden economy.

“Based on helpful feedback from many conservatives in Mississippi’s 3rd District, I have enhanced my American Dream policies with a focus on reducing the tax burden for working families with children.”

Cassidy went on to say that his opponent showed “no leadership in supporting the American family.”

Cassidy’s campaign hammered Congressman Guest with three main points:

– Guest vote for the formation of the January 6 Committee in the United States House.

– Guest vote for a federal budget that includes funding for Planned Parenthood.

– Guest support for sending funds to Ukraine to help the country fight against the Russian invasion.

Of those, the Jan. 6 Committee vote is likely a point of contention with many Republican voters in the 3rd District, as is being pro-life. But it was Guest, not Cassidy, who was supported in Primary by National Right to Life.

A former Trump 2016 campaign staffer works for Cassidy in the Mississippi race. Matt Braynard was the director of data and strategy for the Trump campaign and is the chairman of Braynard Group, a political and digital strategy firm.

Former President Trump has not endorsed any of the candidates in this 2022 Republican primary, although his visit to DeSoto County on June 18 may change that.

Trump previously endorsed the guest congressman’s re-election in the 2020 cycle, tweeting at the time, “Congressman Michael Guest is an incredible fighter for the great state of Mississippi. Michael is strong on Crime and the Border, he loves our military and our vets. Michael has my complete and total approval!

Democratic candidate Shuwaski Young is waiting to see who he faces in November’s general election. He was unopposed in Tuesday’s primary. As Young sees it, however, little separates Cassidy from Guest.

We know why Trump is coming to Mississippi,” Young tweeted Wednesday night. “Michael Guest and Michael Cassidy are both Ultra MAGA extremists who care more about partisan battles than helping Mississippi. It’s clear now that I’m the MS03 common sense choice for the House of Representatives.

Cassidy challenged Guest to a debate during this three-week runoff period so that Holder “can be held accountable,” the challenger said in his Twitter statement on Wednesday. There was no word from Guest’s campaign on whether or not the congressman will agree to such a forum with Cassidy.

— Article credit to Frank Corder of Y’all politics

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