The state Republican Party is launching a new strategy for this fall's congressional elections: making and distributing lists of which Democrats support socialized programs, among other things.
Party chairman Val DiGiorgio said the effort comes in response to four candidates backed by the Democratic Socialists of America winning state legislative primaries.
The Republicans are mailing surveys to all the Democrats running for Congress, and say they plan to use the responses--or lack thereof--in campaign material.
Besides asking if candidates support the DSA, the surveys hit on other GOP talking points--whether they support House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and whether they agree with Congresswoman Maxine Waters' call to heckle the president's cabinet members in public.
DiGiorgio didn't draw any distinctions when it came to DSA support--saying he isn't aware of any difference between socialism and democratic socialism.
"As we saw in Venezuela, socialism tends towards totalitarianism and the loss of freedoms," he said. "We think it can very easily lead to communism and the kinds of abuses we saw under communism."
He specifically took issue with the DSA's support for single-payer health care, free higher education, sanctuary cities and abolishing the office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement--all of which he called "very extreme policies."
A spokesman for the state Democratic Party called the survey a "gimmick," and said the policies Democrats--including the Congressional candidates--support are focused on helping working families.