The centrist group No Labels has targeted Republican donors disaffected with Donald Trump, pitching its unity ticket as a way to beat the former president without funding an entity assisting President Joe Biden.
Such a strategy was confirmed by three people who have either heard the pitch or are familiar with it and were granted anonymity to speak candidly about private fundraising conversations. It could have profound political ripple effects, complicating both the current Republican primary and future general election by siphoning funds away from candidates and entities challenging Trump to a ticket that does not yet exist.
Some Republicans say No Labels insists that donations to it are “a good way to keep Trump out and not have to donate to Biden,” according to a person representing a corporate CEO who was approached by the group. The person is receptive to No Labels’ message of bipartisanship — but skeptical of the organization’s aims to mount a third-party bid.
No Labels spokesperson Maryanne Martini said in a statement, “Once again anonymous sources are inventing hidden agendas for No Labels’ 2024 insurance project. We’re very clear about what we’re doing and why, which is to give voice to America’s commonsense majority by getting ballot access in states nationwide.”
Democrats have expressed alarm with the group’s approach. They warn that No Labels’ presidential ticket would likely harm Biden even as the group insists that it will not play the role of spoiler. One donor who frequently attends No Labels meetings said virtual sessions have recently focused on “the backlash” that No Labels is getting from Democrats.