Sunday, February 11, 2018

Dems Are Winning State Legislative Seats Because Of Trump And GOP Over-Reach... But No One Tell The DLCC


There are 5 special elections for state legislative seats before March-- 3 of them this week. Of the races this week, 2 are in Minnesota-- one in each house-- and one is in Florida. We looked at the Florida race a few weeks ago. It pits Margaret Good, a moderate Democrat, against Republican Congressman Vern Buchanan's son James HD-72 (Sarasota area, the heart of his daddy's district). Good supports Choice, LGBT equality, and says she will fight to expand Medicare and to protect the fragile Florida environment. The district is entirely within Sarasota County and entirely within Buchana's congressional district (FL-16). HD 72 is about 83% white, 11.3% Hispanic and 2.6% Black. The median household income is just over $49,000, slightly higher than the state ($47,866) and the rest of the congressional district ($48,202). The district went for Trump by a little over 4 points. If the swing in a blue direction is around the average of what it has been nationally in state legislative races (around 20 points), Buchanan will be swamped. We'll find out Tuesday. As I've mentioned before, if Good beats Congressman Buchanan's son in his own congressional district expect major-- really major-- panic to set in among the Florida Republicans, the Florida Republicans who aren't already panicking.

The two Minnesota special elections are tomorrow (Monday)-- one southwest of St. Paul and one southeast of St. Paul. House Legislative District 23B is south of Mankato in Blue Earth, Le Sueur, Waseca and Watonwan counties. The Republican Rep, Tony Cornish (a former police officer) resigned in late November after being outed for sexually harassing a lobbyist, Sarah Walker, and and state Rep. Erin Maye Quade (D). In 2016, Cornish had been reelected 13,332 (67%) to 6,547 (33%). The district is 90% white and 8% Hispanic. The Democrat in the race is Melissa Wagner, school social worker, and, after a very bitter primary, the Republicans nominated Jeremy Munson.

In 2016 Bernie is the candidate the voters wanted. He crushed Hillary 2 to 1. Trump came in third in the CD caucus behind Rubio and Cruz and Bernie got nearly 3 times more votes than Trump did. Democratic voters didn't want to status quo candidate but after Wasserman Schultz rigged the race for Hillary, voters decided to give Trump a try instead of Hillary. Now they're sorry and will likely express that tomorrow.

State Senator Dan Schoen (D) was also forced to resign late last year for sexual harassment, also involving state Rep. Erin Maye Quade as well as a state Senate staffer, Lindsey Port. The Democrats nominated Karla Bigham and she will face off against Republican Denny McNamara. In 2016 Schoen had won the district 22,162 (53%) to 19,480 (47%). The district is trends blue and includes parts of Dakota and Washington counties and includes South St Paul, Cottage Grove, Afton and Hastings. The district is about 86% white, 4.7% Hispanic, 3.5% Asian and 3% black. Median income is about $71,000, considerably higher than the state (just under $61,000). Hillary beat Trump in both Dakota and Washington counties but, again, Bernie beat Hillary and Trump in the caucuses.

We'll deal with the February 20th special election in Kentucky (called because a crackpot Republican and racist evangelical minister, who was caught molesting a 17 year old member of his congregation, killed himself) next week and a New Hampshire election on February 27 later as well.

On Saturday, Politico speculated that Democrats haven't just been winning because voters want to punish Trump but because the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) is doing such a fabulous job. They're not doing as bad a job as they've done the last decade or so but, despite what the notorious ass-kissing imbecile at Politico says; they wouldn't be winning these seats except for Trump. The fool credited the DLCC with "old-fashioned political organizing-- Nuts and bolts steps like funding year-round staff on the ground in the states, designing digital fundraising platforms, training volunteers, screening résumés for campaigns around the country and, of course, collecting huge checks." That's nice and you don't win without it, but it's what they've been doing for years, as they lost and lost and lost more seats. Now they have the toxicity of Trump and Ryan working for them and all that grotesque GOP over-reach working for them. It's why they're winning the special elections, not because of some political refuse from EMILY's List, Jessica Post, who is the executive director. (EMILY's List loses all their races, except for the ones that they try glomming into and are held at bay, like Elizabeth Warren's. Any woman with a desire to lose, can just let EMILY's List take over their campaign and run the show; never fails.)
Democrats in the states are so deep in the hole that the special election successes can seem more important than they are, argued Republican State Leadership Committee president Matt Walter. He pointed out that 20 of the special elections Democrats won were in districts that Hillary Clinton carried, and Republicans have flipped four special elections themselves in the past year.

“When you are at an all-time high, when you’ve flipped a thousand seats over the past decade, you are so far into your opponent’s turf, they’re just clawing back to neutral in a lot of respects, and attempting to capture districts where if they’d run good candidates with a good vision, they never would have lost them,” Walter said.

Still, the size of the special election swings is what has many Democrats excited.
That's exactly right-- and "the size of the special election swings" are entirely about Trump, not about the DLCC having substantially reformed itself in any real way.
For the Florida House races on Tuesday, the DLCC sent $10,000 to the state Democratic Party, and this past week sent an email on behalf of Margaret Good, the candidate they’re most hopeful about. The group also helped facilitated a Joe Biden endorsement for Good that raised $8,000 more for her.

...The DLCC provides basic campaign infrastructure, from budgeting software to field training guides. In Virginia last fall, as House of Delegates candidates were swamped with volunteers that helped power the wave of wins on Election Day, it was as simple as sending out staff to help direct them.
I would say all those nice special election victories are attributable about 90% to Trump and Ryan and 10% to the DLCC doing a decent job. It's part of a wave that's building, not part of a sudden brain storm by Jessica Post.

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At 8:01 PM, Anonymous ap215 said...

You can add this to the DLCC win column as well congrats to Karla Bigham.


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