On "Teflon Don" and what's actually happening on the ground
Politico, which has improved vastly in the age of Trump, decided to revisit its days of fluffing with an article about how Moron Hitler, no matter what the polls say, will be invulnerable in 2018.
Democrats tried attacking Donald Trump as unfit for the presidency. They’ve made the case that he’s ineffective, pointing to his failure to sign a single major piece of legislation into law after eight months in the job. They’ve argued that Trump is using the presidency to enrich himself and that his campaign was in cahoots with Russia.
None of it is working.
Data from a range of focus groups and internal polls in swing states paint a difficult picture for the Democratic Party heading into the 2018 midterms and 2020 presidential election. It suggests that Democrats are naive if they believe Trump’s historically low approval numbers mean a landslide is coming. The party is defending 10 Senate seats in states that Trump won and needs to flip 24 House seats to take control of that chamber.
Dire, no? All the Democrats' work will be as ash, and Teflon Don will have a working majority come January 2019.
Let's set aside for a moment that he has a working majority now and hasn't been able to do squat with it. Let's look, say, at the news from just yesterday.
In a New Hampshire legislative special election, the Democrats flipped a Republican seat. Of course, this wasn't any old seat:
The state Democratic Party said President Donald Trump won the district by 17 percentage points in November, while Fisher won by 7 percentage points.
That's right. A district which went overwhelmingly for Moron Hitler, and somewhat less for the former occupant, swung to the Democrats. How much? Democratic candidate Charlie St. Claire won with 56% of the vote.
Then we have Oklahoma. The state so red that Democrats are nonentities. It, too, had a special election. It, too, was a reliably red district which overwhelmingly voted for Moron Hitler. Democrat Jacob Rosencrants won with 60% of the vote. In political parlance, that's called a "good thumpin'".
Add this to the special election seats Democrats have won in 2017, and a pattern begins to emerge.
According to data assembled by Daily Kos and mapped by Daniel Donner, Democrats have performed better than Hillary Clinton in 27 out of 35 congressional and state-legislative special elections held this year. And they've done better than President Barack Obama's 2012 margins in 25 out of 35.
Democrats, of course, haven't won all the seats. Republicans have held onto 18 seats. But, Democrats have flipped six. That's 25% of the seats on offer. Of this stuff are waves made of.
The fact that Democrats at the local level are outperforming both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama puts swing districts in play. Blood-red seats will have to be defended harder than they should be, while purple districts may become out of play for the GOP. This is what's happening on the ground, in actual voting.
And, of course, we have the evidence provided by the raft of incumbent Republican congressmembers deciding to spend time with their families and not run for reelection. Usually you don't do that if you fancy your party's chances of retaining its majority.
I'm far from whistling in the dark. Next year will be challenging, as all elections are. But, if one takes what's happening in actual voting, where we have actual numbers and not polling, then one can be a bit less stressed over the midterms. Caution is always called for. What helps no one is gloom and doom. As I keep saying, we are not in normal times. And as unified GOP government keeps showing its ineptitude and sheer cruelty, I don't envy the Republican efforts to continue the zombiefication of their voters. They may just decide to stay home and watch the tube November 6th next.
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