If you listen to people like Chuck “The Forehead” Schumer, Nancy “I’m An Alien” Pelosi, and new DNC Chairman, Tom Perez, you’d probably think that the Grand Old Party is doomed come next year when there will be all of the House seats and a third of the Senate seats up for election. But hold on to your horses. That’s not necessarily the case.
Most politicos out there were watching three “replacement” races rather carefully over the past couple of months, and one of them goes into June. The first of course was Mike Pompeo’s seat in the Kansas 4th Congressional District, which was vacated when Pompeo was named the new CIA Director. In that race Ron Estes beat James Thompson by about 7 points…after Dems threw a ton of money into the race. They saw it as a fulcrum to taking back the House. As it turns out, Kansas 4th stayed red, and Dems went home with their tails between their legs.
Then it was on to the Georgia 6th Congressional District where Democrat upstart Jon Ossoff was trying to avoid a runoff election in June. In Georgia, if you get 50% or more of the vote in the first round of balloting, you don’t have to go to the runoff, you just plain win. And there were a bunch of Republicans splitting the normally heavy Republican vote in the district. As it turns out, Ossoff ended up just shy of the 50% mark with 48.1% and he will have to face off against Karen Handel next month. She is heavily favored because the feeling goes that all of the Republicans will put their votes toward her rather than vote for a Democrat. The election is a “replacement” election to find someone to take Tom Price’s House seat after Price moved to head Health and Human Services as their Secretary.
And then this past Thursday in Montana, there was all sorts of drama. Republican Greg Gianforte should have had an easy walk in normally red Montana and the race to replace newly named Interior Secretary, Ryan Zinke. It’s Montana’s only House seat, so it’s pretty much a state-wide election. What made this one different isn’t that Gianforte was facing off against a musician, Rob Quist. It was that days before the election, he body-slammed a reporter, causing a national controversy. Then, Gianforte went into hiding. He won by 7 points, instead of the 20 points he was thinking he was going to win by. It should be noted that in Montana, most people vote early through absentee ballots, and the feeling is that a solid 40% of the vote was already cast when Gianforte tried out for the WWE. He did end up apologizing in his victory speech.
So, out of the three “must wins” that the Democrats felt they had a shot at, they won none of them. Oh, they came close. They threw millions of dollars away trying to win all of the seats, and came away empty. The lesson is simple. It is going to take more than hating Donald Trump (though most people don’t actually hate the guy), to take back the House and Senate next year. It’s going to take the House and the Senate to show the same kind of stupid plays that the Democrats made when they ran the two chambers…not passing a budget, passing the worst bill in history (Obamacare), and having absolutely the two most corrupt and worst leaders they could find in Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi. I’m not saying the GOP isn’t up to the task of losing. I’m saying they have a ways to go.
Carry on world…you’re dismissed!