An aide to Elissa Slotkin detoured from her attempts to appear moderate Tuesday by claiming the Republican Party is “sick” and led by a “cult leader”.

Tom Bratton, Slotkin’s Senate campaign Northern Michigan Political Manager, told the Missaukee County Democratic Party Tuesday night he grew up in a Republican family, which apparently gave him license to critique it.

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“Probably a lot of people in this area grew up in Republican families,” Bratton said, according to a video of the remark obtained by The Midwesterner.

Missaukee County was dubbed the “most Republican” county in Michigan in 2016 as 74 percent of voters backed Donald Trump. That support grew to 76 percent in 2020.

“Grew up in a time when the Republican Party might have been healthy,” he continued. “It’s sick right now.

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“They’ve got a cult leader,” he said, apparently referring to Trump. “I was happy not to be a part of that cult. Right now, the Democratic Party is holding the democracy banner and that’s pretty cool,” Bratton said.

Dave Maynard, regional coordinator for the Joe Biden campaign, attended the meeting with Bratton.

In 2022, Slotkin postured as Michigan’s “most bipartisan member of the House of Representatives,” according to a news release.

“Especially at a moment where we’re experiencing intense division in our country, it’s never been more important for Members of Congress to work across the aisle to tackle the biggest challenges our country is facing,” Slotkin said. “I’ve always said that I’m willing to work with anyone, no matter their party, as long as they’re serious about finding solutions and improving peoples’ lives. Our constituents expect us to step up, show leadership and work hard to get things done. That’s been my guiding principle in Congress and it always will be.”

The media has echoed Slotkin’s claims. When Slotkin announced her campaign for U.S. Senate, the Detroit News referred to her as a “centrist”.