Are you familiar with Eighteen Fifty Four?
You might be soon.
A super PAC with a Houston, Texas mailing address, Eighteen Fifty Four is a well-funded Republican political operation that is quietly funding more moderate GOP candidates in an attempt to sideline more extreme candidates that could harm the party in the fall, according to reporting from Axios.
The group, formed by Kevin McLaughlin, invested in six primary races – including the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race. Honor Pennsylvania – the PAC supporting Dave McCormick – received $500,000 from the operation but its candidate fell short in a recount to Mehmet Oz.
Other races included:
- Old North PAC spent $1.15 million supporting North Carolina House candidate Kelly Daughtry and opposing her two primary rivals. One of those opponents, Bo Hines, prevailed in the May primary.
- 1818 PAC spent $615,000 opposing Illinois Rep. Mary Miller’s Republican primary bid against Rep. Rodney Davis in a rare incumbent vs. incumbent contest. Miller prevailed last month.
- Hoosier Values spent more than $900,000 in support of Indiana House candidate Stu Barnes-Israel and against one of his primary opponents, Michael Sodrel. Both lost to former state Sen. Erin Houchin in the May primary.
- 1788 PAC spent $78,000 backing Virginia House candidate Bryce Reeves and opposing primary rival Yesli Vega. Vega prevailed in the primary last month.
- No More Mo spent $175,000 opposing Rep. Mo Brooks’ Alabama Senate primary bid. Brooks lost to nominee Katie Britt in June.
Named for the year that the Republican Party was formed, Eighteen Fifty Four is the political arm of the GOP-aligned nonprofit, Common Sense Leadership Fund, and expects to spend more than $10 million in the midterms, according to Axios. The operation spent $3.56 million in the second quarter.
McLaughlin previously served as the Executive Director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC). Eighteen Fifty Four has also received funding from American Patriots PAC, a group backed by Republican megadonors such as Ken Griffin, Paul Singer and Charles Schwab.