Parsing the 2019 Elections and the Alleged Trump Effect

President Donald Trump arrives to speak at a campaign rally, Thursday, Aug. 15, 2019, in Manchester, N.H. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

To the victor belongs not the spoils, but the right to crow about victory.  When you have a compliant media in your corner, one can understand the consensus analysis by the mainstream media when it comes to the 2019 election results.  According to the cutest little boy on television since Ricky Schroeder- Rachel Maddow- the results sent “political shockwaves.”  CNN reminded us that these statewide elections were “all about Trump (almost).”  And dailyKos called it a “2019 Blue Wave.”

Losing elections are never happy affairs to the party on the short end.  However, when put in proper perspective, there is nothing to be real unhappy about- other than Virginia, but that is a whole other story.  In Kentucky, incumbent Republican Governor Matt Bevin lost to Democrat Andy Beshear, the son of a former governor.  Although Trump did hold a last-minute rally for Bevin, he lost.  This had anything to do with Trump?

Probably not since Matt Bevin was the least popular Republican governor in the nation.  He was tied with Connecticut’s Democrat governor in 49th place with a 32% approval rating and a 56% disapproval rating.  Despite those dismal numbers, he lost by slightly less than 5,100 votes of over 1.5 million cast.  This is not spinning a loss into a victory; it is a simple fact.

What you did not hear from these talking head “experts” was the fact that a black conservative Republican won the state attorney general’s race in Kentucky.  Certainly, that is newsworthy especially since it is the first time in 70 years Kentucky will have a Republican attorney general.  Likewise, Kentucky will continue to have a Republican secretary of state, Republican agriculture commissioner, Republican state auditor and, of course, governor-elect Beshear will have to deal with a Republican legislature.

One should notice that we heard practically nothing about races in Mississippi.  That is because the GOP held onto the Governor’s office and made a gain by picking up the attorney general’s office.  What makes this newsworthy- but not to the folks in the East Coast liberal media hubs- is the fact this will be the first time in 100 years a Republican will hold that post.  Even more newsworthy, being that the Left is all into woman power, was that Lynn Fitch will be the first woman attorney general of Mississippi…ever.  Woman power is apparently meaningless if (1) it is Mississippi, (2) you are a Republican woman, or (3) see 1 and 2.

As mentioned earlier, things were different in Virginia where Democrats managed to win the House of Delegates, the state Senate and they have, of course, Democrat governor Ralph “Blackface” Northam.  They have achieved the trifecta in state government.  First, the GOP lead in the House of Delegates was not that great to begin with as the GOP led 51-49 in partisan makeup.  Obviously, Democrats managed to flip enough seats to gain control of the lower house.  Further, the partisan make up of the state senate did not change and Democrats hold a tenuous 21-19 advantage- the same advantage they held before Election Day.

Most analysis of the GOP losses in the House of Delegates focuses on the DC suburbs.  However, four of the six districts flipped by Democrats in 2019 were not DC suburbs.  Only the 28th and 40th districts can be considered DC suburbs.  Three others were in the Newport News-Virginia Beach area, and the last one was in the south along the North Carolina border (the 76th district).  Unless we have extended the definition of the DC suburbs to now include Newport News, Virginia Beach, and Hampton, Democrat gains in these areas is likely a cause for concern.

What we may have seen in the DC suburbs is an already blue area becoming more blue.  This is likely due to the growing size of the federal government and those employees/bureaucrats now calling northern Virginia home.  From a presidential standpoint, Trump can likely kiss Virginia goodbye as it is unlikely he will garner enough votes in this area of the state and given trends in the other population centers of Virginia (Richmond, Newport News, Virginia Beach), it is doubtful there are enough votes to overcome this now built-in advantage for the Democrats.

There are two other election day results that bear mentioning.  The first is that the city of Tucson, Arizona is basically a blue city in a red state.  Three US Congressional districts reach into the city and all three are represented by Democrats.  In a serious blow to an immigrant’s rights group, over 71% of voters rejected the idea of designating Tucson a “sanctuary city.”

Finally, in my home liberal state, although the GOP apparently made no gains in state legislative, results in my immediate area are interesting.  Although still very close and unofficial, it would appear Democrat incumbents in the 1st and 2nd General Assembly districts have lost to their Republican counterparts.  This is interesting since these two state-level districts overlap with the federal Second Congressional district currently held by Democrat freshman Jeff Van Drew.  No doubt he was watching these races.  Van Drew, you may recall, was one of two Democrats who crossed party lines and voted against the latest House impeachment inquiry sham.  I can safely say that the Democrat leadership in this area is livid about Van Drew’s vote.

So, what was the so-called Trump effect in the 2019 elections?  His last-minute visit to Lexington, Kentucky was probably too little, too late for an unpopular incumbent Governor.  Regardless, that visit may have made the race closer than it deserved to be.  In Mississippi, it proves the GOP brand is alive and well while in Virginia, although things look tough going forward, all is not lost.  Those delegate seats that flipped were not of landslide proportion and can be won back (except the Deep State-loving DC suburbs).  In the Tucson sanctuary city question that was defeated, some said city officials feared losing federal aid from Trump if the referendum passed.  And in New Jersey, although more likely a referendum on New Jersey governor Phil Squirrel-face Murphy, from personal experience, Republicans in this area are secretly biding their time and cannot wait until the 2020 election.  The apparent GOP victories in areas overlapping Van Drew’s territory may signal a GOP resurgence in districts held by Democrats that are either swing or nominally Democrat.

Well, if CNN, MSNBC and dailyKos can read more than its due into a state or local election, so can this writer.