The Midterms: Louisiana, Kentucky and Massachusetts

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Promoted from the diaries by streiff. Promotion does not imply endorsement.
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Today, we look at another New England state and two southern states.  First up…Massachusetts.

MASSACHUSETTS

Nine House seats, a gubernatorial election and a Senate seat are up for grabs here.  In the Senate race, incumbent Democrat Elizabeth Warren, who has visions of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue dancing in her head, should cruise to reelection and the Nation will have to endure at least another six years of her.  In the gubernatorial race, Republican incumbent Charlie Baker sports some of the highest approval ratings for a Governor of either party in the country.  Surprisingly, the RGA, perhaps leaving nothing to chance, has invested over $4 million in advertising in this race.  Part of that is the expensive Boston media market, but some may be due in order to run up the score and see some GOP victories down ballot, at least on the state legislative side, if not federal side.

The congressional delegation from Massachusetts favors the Democrats 9-0 and come January, 2019 it should favor the Democrats 9-0.  Of course, the big news out of the Bay State was the primary loss of Democratic Mike Capuano in the 7th District to Boston City Councilor Ayanna Presley who many have compared to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York.  Both defeated relatively entrenched Democratic incumbents.  These victories must be put into perspective.  Both the NY-14 and MA-7 are urban, heavily-Democratic districts where Republicans often do not even field candidates.  Their victories indicate Democratic dissatisfaction with the status quo, but they also indicate the leftward swing of the Democrats, particularly in urban districts.  Perhaps, from the GOP standpoint, that is a good thing because it will be a vivid reminder to the rest of the country and voters of how radical the Democratic Party is becoming.  It is interesting to note that most of the state’s Democratic establishment threw their support behind Capuano, including former Governor Deval Patrick, although Warren remained neutral.

LOUISIANA

There are only Congressional races this year and the current delegation favors the GOP, 5-1.  Louisiana uses a jungle primary system with that primary coinciding with federal Election Day.  If no candidate receives 50% of the vote in their district, then the top two advance to a runoff in early December.  All incumbents are running for reelection and at least five of the six will likely NOT have to endure a runoff.  The exception is the Third District where Republican incumbent Clay Higgins will have to fend off another viable Republican.  However, no district in Louisiana is expected to flip and no pundit has any of these races on their radar.

KENTUCKY

Like Louisiana, there are only Congressional races this year.  The biggest race of interest is the Sixth District where Republican incumbent Andy Barr faces Democrat Amy McGrath.  Barr has been running ads since the primary depicting McGrath as too liberal for a District that supported Trump 55-39 in 2016.  Those ads have shown McGrath, in her own words, claiming to be a feminist, making fun of Kentucky’s Coal Museum, and of supporting Obamacare, gun control and dissing the Trump tax bill.  For their part, the Democrats are pushing back claiming McGrath is nothing like what the Barr ads portray and their proof is not her actual words, but the fact she flew 89 combat missions in Iraq.  Elsewhere throughout the country, Democrats are using a similar strategy by insinuating that because their candidate is a combat veteran, they somehow cannot hold liberal policy views.

Polling thus far shows a very close race.  Since Kentucky falls in an early time zone, the results of this race, like some others in the early time zones, may foretell the GOP chances in the House.  Although the polls are very close now, the trend shows the race breaking towards a GOP victory and this writer has to concur.  It may, in the end, be a close race, but the GOP should retain this seat.

Totals as of this entry:

US House 27-17 Republican; US Senate 13-9 Republican; Governors 8-3 Republican

Tomorrow: Maryland and North Carolina