Sunday, December 10, 2017

In A Wave Election Cycle, Republicans Are Preparing To Wave Goodbye To Congress-- And Hello To K Street


The DCCC brain surgeons are starting to figure out that PVIs don't count as much in wave elections and that this cycle there really are no safe Republican seats. Any seat where the Democrats + independents make up 50% + one of potential voters, is up for grabs. People are pissed off-- pissed off about Trump, pissed off about Putin, pissed off about Ryan's Tax Scam, pissed off about how the Republicans treat women (and children), pissed off... did I mention Trump?

Last Tuesday, in a Georgia runoff, progressive Democrat Jen Jordan broke the Republicans' supermajority in the state Senate by winning the seat abandoned by Hunter Hill, one of the crazy right-wing Republicans running for governor. That's a red, red district-- wealthy and white-- that includes Buckhead, Marietta, Smyrna, Vinings and Sandy Springs and Jen beat a conservative Democrat with a GOP-lite message by talking progressive issues. And we all know what happened in Virginia as seat after seat was taken from the Republicans in districts where they thought they were perfectly safe and as their Trump-backed gubernatorial candidate was swamped-- along with the other 2 statewide candidates.

Less well known was how Trump's top Republican ally in New York, Rob Astorino, Westchester County Executive, was beaten by state Senator George Latimer-- despite Mercer and Bannon throwing a million dollars into the race to save Astorino. Latimer took the race handily-- 116,767 (57%) to 89,463 (43%). That same day a Democrat, Laura Curran, won the Nassau County Executive job over GOP heavy-hitter Jack Martins. Did I mention people are pissed? At Republicans? About a month ago the DCCC put its toe tepidly into waters it never plays in, adding nearly a dozen new districts it claims it will contest:
WI-01- Paul Ryan
NY-02- Peter King
IN-09- Trey Hollingsworth
WA-05- Cathy McMorris Rodgers
UT-04- Mia Love
CA-04- Tom McClintock
WI-06- Glenn Grothman
TX-21- Lamar Smith (retiring)
OH-12- Pat Tiberi (retiring)
PA-11- Lou Barletta (retiring)
PA-15- Charlie Dent (retiring)
I'd normally say, "welcome, jump in-- he water's fine"... but-- hey this is the DCCC we're talking about and that means Republican-lite, corrupt conservative candidates will be deployed. They claim to have their eyes on 91 districts now-- their largest battlefield since Rahm destroyed the committee's DNA and made it completely useless and dysfunctional. Not even a complete lunkhead like Luján would be stupid enough to mess with the energy around the Randy Bryce campaign up in WI-01, but the DCCC can be expected to back their usual array of self-funding crap-conservative candidates in most districts-- take Joseph Kopser in TX-21, Liz Watson in IN-09, Tim Gomes in NY-02 as examples. Garbage from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party-- or even worse... actual Republicans pretending to be "Democrats" or, to quote a frequent DWT commenter, Democraps.

Whoever writes Luján's pathetic memos for him claimed that "the DCCC successfully outlined and built an 80-district battlefield by landing highly qualified recruits with records of service and authentic messages that connect with voters in their districts." The DCCC persuades itself this is somehow true-- none of it is-- and proceeds, cycle after cycle, to hand Congress back to the GOP. Most of the memo is about money, even though in wave elections money takes a back seat to grassroots energy. The DCCC has never and never will understand this, so they recruit energy-less candidates who turn off the base completely often because they are self-funding conservatives totally out of touch with a Democratic they have never interacted with. Great examples are horrifying DCCC recruits like Gil Cisneros (the lottery winning Republican in CA-39), Hans Keirstead (CA-48), David Trone (MD-06), Sarah Jacobs (the Qualcomm heiress- CA-49), Lucas St. Clair (the Burt's Bees heir-ME-02)... One day Pelosi will just empty her whole roladex onto the DCCC candidates page.

What the DCCC has going for itself this quarter has nothing whatsoever to do with the DCCC-- the disdain in which voters hold Trump and Paul Ryan. If only the DCCC knew how to use that disdain as anchors around the necks of Republican incumbents. These are Republican districts whereTrump's job approval rating is in the toilet. Approval/Disapproval:
VA-10 (Barbara Comstock)- 37/59%
CA-10 (Jeff Denham)- 40/57%
CO-06 (Mike Coffman)- 41/55%
WA-08 (Dave Reichert)- 40/55%
CA-21 (David Valadao)- 41/55%
VA-02 (Scott Taylor)- 43/54%
IA-03 (David Young)- 43/53%
CA-39 (Ed Royce)- 33/53%
NY-24 (John Katko)- 37/53%
PA-08 (Brian Fitzpatrick)- 40/53%
FL-26 (Carlos Curbelo)- 37/53%
MI-08 (Mike Bishop)- 37/52%
WI-01 (Paul Ryan)- 42/52%
IA-01 (Rod Blum)- 34/52%
MN-02 (Jason Lewis)- 44/52%
PA-06 (Ryan Costello)- 43/52%
PA-15 (Charlie Dent)- 46/52%
NY-23 (Tom Reed)- 41/50%
MI-11 (Dave Trott)- 44/50%
CA-25 (Steve Knight)- 42/50%
ME-02 (Bruce Poliquin)- 43/49%
Now, let's look at polling that's been done on Paul Ryan and his favorable/unfavorable rankings. He is absolutely toxic! Independent, especially, HATE this guy now.
VA-10 (Barbara Comstock)- 20/71%
PA-06 (Ryan Costello)- 21/70%
WA-08 (Dave Reichert)- 20/67%
AZ-02 (Martha McSally)- 23/65%
IA-03 (David Young)- 24/65%
MI-11 (Dave Trott)- 22/65%
CO-06 (Mike Coffman)- 25/64%
CA-49 (Darrell Issa)- 25/63%
MN-02 (Jason Lewis)- 29/62%
IA-01 (Rod Blum)- 26/61%
ME-02 (Bruce Poliquin)- 25/61%
PA-15 (Charlie Dent)- 25/61%
NY-22 (Claudia Tenney)- 26/52%
CO-03 (Scott Tipton)- 24/52%
PA-08 (Brian Fitzpatrick)- 30/52%
NY-27 (Chris Collins)- 29/51%
NY-24 (John Katko)- 32/49%
CA-25 (Steve Knight)- 26/48%
CA-39 (Ed Royce)- 26/43%

Now, if only the DCCC could use Ryan against Republican candidates, the way the NRCC used Pelosi against Democratic candidates! Politico had some interesting reporting on this same topic on Friday. Fortunately Randy Bryce knows how to use Paul Ryan against Paul Ryan. If you missed the first post this morning, go back and look.
California Rep. Tom McClintock, who represents one of the newly added districts, acknowledged “a huge enthusiasm gap that favors the Democrats right now.”

“I think in a lot of ways, it’s the 2010 dynamic in reverse,” he said.

Rep. Glenn Grothman-- one of two Wisconsin Republicans on the list, which includes House Speaker Paul Ryan-- told the local WISN-AM radio station last month that his campaign was “not raising as much money as we should.”

“I am very apprehensive about the future,” said Grothman, who represents a Republican-oriented district in Central Wisconsin. “Right now it’s kind of the calm before the storm.”

Though Grothman and McClintock easily won reelection in 2014, they have good cause to be apprehensive. Aside from the potential drag of the president’s low approval ratings, both incumbents face the unusual prospect of well-funded Democratic challengers.

In Wisconsin, the state Democratic Party hired a campaign organizing director in an off-year for the first time this year, said the party’s chairwoman, Martha Laning.

She called the effort to unseat Grothman and Ryan “realistic.”

“People are frustrated,” she said. “They don’t see things getting done that are helping them.”

In McClintock’s sprawling, largely rural Northern California district-- where Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton by more than 14 percentage points last year-- the congressman’s opponents are raising cash at a surprising clip. One of his Democratic challengers, Jessica Morse, raised more money than McClintock in the third quarter. Another potential Democratic foe, Regina Bateson, saw campaign contributions increase 10-fold the day after the Virginia election, her campaign said.

...Mark Graul, a Republican strategist in Wisconsin, was similarly skeptical about the prospect of Democrats toppling Ryan or Grothman. However, he said, “Anyone who thinks they know what’s going to happen a year from now is smoking crack rock.”

“You can certainly make a plausible argument that if you’re a Republican you’ve got to be on guard, and wary and ready to run a good race next year based on what we saw in Virginia,” he said.

The secret weapon for Democrats smart enough to use it

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At 4:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rs may never lose the senate again. And they can be assured that should they lose the house next year it will be only for one or two cycles at most because the democraps won't know what to do with a house majority. They certainly can't do anything progressive or they'll lose billions in bribes. So they'll pretend, wrinkle their noses, blame the Rs, shit the bed and screw the pooch.

A winning formula for the Rs to retake, if they lose it in the first place.

And when all those new Ds lose in 2020 or 2022, where do you think THEY are going to find employment?

At 6:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I read your positive and encouraging words, it gives me hope. However just before I read this, I read Digby's Hullabaloo wherein she quotes writers who are very pessimistic about the Democrats' ability to overcome their problems and really fight back against the rethuglicans. I hope you are right and they are wrong.

At 11:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why include already announced retirements in your shit list? Reichert, for one, is moot. And the DCCC could absolutely fuck it up in that blue-ish district. How do you think Reichert ever got elected in the first place?


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