ICYMI: Eric Hovde’s No Good Very Bad Launch Volume 2

Feb 21, 2024

ICYMI: Eric Hovde’s No Good Very Bad Launch Volume 2

MADISON, Wis. — Yesterday, California bank owner Eric Hovde (R–Laguna Beach) officially announced his candidacy for U.S. Senate, and he spent the entire launch on defense.

After the terrible start to his launch yesterday, Hovde spent the next twelve hours of his campaign admitting that he doesn’t live full time in Wisconsin, getting called out for opposing a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions, his efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the failure to mention Wisconsin in his ad, and his ties to California, including the $2.8 billion California bank he owns, which Hovde admitted was his main business.

See below for a roundup of Hovde on the defensive: 

  • Wisconsin Examiner: Eric Hovde’s weirdly lackluster Senate bid

    • But the biggest blow to Hovde’s announcement Monday came from the Hovde campaign itself, which launched an inaugural campaign ad yesterday in which Hovde fails to make even a passing reference to the state of Wisconsin.

    • After his brother finished naming Wisconsin sports teams, Hovde bounded on stage to the tune of “Life is a Highway.” Not the ideal jingle for someone trying to shake off the image of a carpetbagger.

    • The creaky start to the Hovde Senate bid seems like a reflection of a candidate who needed a lot of persuasion to run and finally persuaded himself to leave his Laguna Beach mansion on the strength of his conviction that, as he put it, “everywhere I look today in my country, I see it failing,” and that he is the man to fix it.

    • Despite his pledge to rise above partisan politics, Hovde’s opposition to the Affordable Care Act and his absolutist anti-abortion stance — pledging to protect life starting at conception and supporting the overturning of Roe v. Wade — as Republicans prepare to push for a national abortion ban, put him at odds with most Wisconsinites.

  • WTMV: “Hovde says he also wants to overturn the Affordable Care Act and says he opposes abortion. Baldwin, though, says she plans to highlight abortion rights.”

  • WPR: “Hovde ran as an opponent of the abortion rights and the Affordable Care Act. He said he favored a “private sector approach” for Medicare and called for raising the age for seniors receiving Social Security benefits.”

  • Cap Times: “Hovde made no mention of Wisconsin during the ad.”

    • “Democrats have sought to knock Hovde for owning an estate in California and being named one of Orange County’s “Most Influential People” in 2018 in recognition of his business ties in the Golden State. That mirrors a strategy they used to attack Michels.”

    • “Democrats gathered across the street from Hovde’s campaign launch Tuesday holding signs that read “Hovde for California.” The signs were paid for by the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, which has been campaigning hard against Hovde for months leading up to his formal announcement.”

  • WisPolitics: “Dems are knocking Hovde on abortion and his California ties through paid media.”

  • Daniel Bice, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: “GOP Senate candidate Eric Hovde is defending his Laguna Beach, California house on talk radio today”

  • Eric Hovde, this morning: “I have one other home in California… I added my total days up in California when I go back and forth for business and issues like that. I don’t know, probably about three months out of the year.”

    • “I finally said, I’m tired of living at a hotel every time I go visit my bank. So I bought a home”