Let’s put things in perspective.
In Ohio’s 12th congressional district in 2016 and 2014 the Republican candidate won by over 36 percentage points, and the Democrat didn’t even get 30 percent of the vote in either election.
Last night in Ohio’s 12th congressional district Democrat Danny O’Connor got over 49% of the vote and lost by about .9% of the vote.
This means that in less than two years Republicans have lost 35% of their vote margin.
This means that last night’s special election was a disaster for the GOP.
This means that November is going to be a bigger disaster for the Republican Party and the Blue Wave is coming.
As Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough made clear this morning, Republicans should not be doing any celebrating for barely holding on to a House seat that they have held for 90 out of the past 100 years.
“Regardless of who ends up winning it, Republicans certainly know as well as Democrats, this is another race where Republicans have under-performed in a district that is deep, deep red,” Scarborough said. “Maybe Democrats have won it once since the 1930s.”
Scarborough also pointed out that President Donald Trump’s historic unpopularity has been hurting Republican candidates and costing them most of their historic support in critical suburban areas. Wealthy, college-educated suburbanites for a long time have been the backbone of the GOP, and is the reason they have had majorities in Congress.
Now college-educated voters want nothing to do with Donald Trump and his party of white supremacy and nationalism. They know that Trump is a threat to democracy and freedom, and that he has gained power by appealing to the lowest common denominator of political emotions, such as racism, sexism and xenophobia.
“Republicans are bleeding so badly right now in suburbs,” Scarborough said. “And then you go north to Franklin County [Ohio] in the exurbs, they’re basically splitting it, holding their own, but losing a ton of a votes. This is a party, the Republican Party, that’s becoming more and more of a rural party.”
Scarborough is right, and as Conor Lamb showed when he won a Republican-held seat in a special election in Pennsylvania last spring, Democrats can now win suburban congressional districts that have been in Republican hands for decades.
As The Washington Post said this morning:
“The tight race between Democrat Danny O’Connor and Republican Troy Balderson in a deep-red Ohio House district Tuesday reinforced a trend that has been developing for more than a year: Democrats are routinely beating their 2016 performance by double digits — putting the House and perhaps even the Senate within their grasp in November.”
Last night’s election showed that the Republican Party is in big trouble and is going to be crushed in the midterm elections.
[Note: the Ohio Secretary of State said announcement of a final result will be delayed until more than 8,000 provisional and absentee ballots have been counted.]
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.
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