Takeaway from big election night

If Tuesday’s elections were the first concrete reading of the political situation since Joe Biden took office, Democrats could go straight to the hurricane.

A slim come-from-behind victory in deep blue New Jersey will be good news for Democrats in this election. That’s the bad news they’re looking forward to. The Democratic House of Representatives and Senate majority look more vulnerable than ever. And for Republicans, the results of local races in New Jersey and elsewhere fueled their already rosy outlook in the mid-2022.

Glenn Youngkin has fired Virginia’s Terry McAuliffe, and Republicans appear ready to wipe out all three state-wide offices on ballots for the first time in more than a decade. Republicans are also on the verge of regaining the State Capitol after just two years of democratic rule.

Then there’s New Jersey, where Republican Jack Ciattarelli led Democratic Governor Phil Murphy for most of Tuesday night, but Murphy saves a narrow victory a year after seeing Biden carry 16 points in the state. I hope that. county.

Here’s what we learned from Tuesday’s annual elections:

Looking back on the suburbs

Yongkin’s campaign did not keep secret plans to target Virginia’s high-voting suburbs. He was a Republican and was confident that the GOP could regain some of the support it lost under Trump.

It worked even though the counties around Washington and Richmond were still painted blue on the map. Yongkin cut into McCorriff’s margin in places like Loudoun County and lost 10 points in the same place-President Donald Trump lost 25 last year. Yongkin won 35% of the votes in Fairfax County, the state’s most populous municipality. McCorriff is easy to support, but Republicans have improved significantly from 28% for Trump and 31% for 2017 governor candidate Ed Gillespie.

Yongkin didn’t just make a profit in northern Virginia. He turned over Chesterfield County, south of Richmond. Chesterfield County was a long-standing Republican fortress that recently moved to the Democratic line. Same as Virginia Beach and the city of Chesapeake on the southeastern corner of the state.

As a result, the Democratic Party was upset, and some operatives warned that efforts to treat suburban voters as part of the party’s base would ruin the candidate.

Veteran democracy strategist and Virginia native Jesse Ferguson said:

Promoting these results: Republicans have seen Yongkin outperform nonpartisan and dramatically improve his position with women in the party after bleeding women and nonpartisan voters during the Trump era. Rather than simply exploiting GOP’s parent Trump base, the Republicans may have despised the former president, but could gather a wider coalition of right-wing voters who are willing to forget him.

New Jersey, the most densely populated state in the United States, like Virginia, has suburbs of cities in other states, and the same phenomenon was evident there. Not all votes were counted as of early Wednesday morning, but Chattarelli had a slight lead in Bergen County across George Washington Bridge from Manhattan.

American countryside roars again

Yongkin’s profits in the suburbs were needed to overtake McCorriff, but not enough. He also needed the Trump country to fully appear, and it did.

As expected, Trump issued a statement praising “my base” for Yonkin’s victory. But in rural Virginia counties, Yongkin ran with or often before Trump. He won 66% of the votes in Roanoke County, southwestern Virginia, up from 60% in Trump. In Bedford County, where Trump won 73% of the votes, Yongkin won 79%.

In addition, turnout in many of these counties easily exceeded the last governor’s election four years ago. This shows that Trump’s base was motivated to vote without Trump, either Trump himself, or even a direct Trump rally.

The other side of the coin: Democratic candidates continue to sink to new lows in rural areas, especially among white voters. According to exit polls, Yongkin gained 76% to 24% of white voters without a college degree (overrated in rural areas) by a 3: 1 difference. Trump acquired these voters in 2020, a difference of 62% to 38% over Biden.

Democratic missing message

McCorriff spent the entire campaign driving Yongkin to Trump. He hit the pandemic hard and, like many Democrats, believed that the ban on abortion in Texas would eliminate Democratic voters.

abortion, McCorriff said this summer, “It will be a great motivation for individuals to come out and vote.”

It wasn’t. Less than 1 in 10 voters said abortion was their most important issue. According to the exit poll.. Only 14 percent said the same thing about the coronavirus.

The key was education and the economy — both issues where Yongkin had the upper hand. Republicans have expressed concern about the so-called “critical race theory” and accused McCorriff of saying in a debate that “I don’t think parents should teach what they should teach school.”

What did the Democratic Party have to offer? not much.

The party’s infrastructure and social spending plans are still trapped in parliament, and the Democratic president’s official approval rating is in the tank.

Doug Herman, lead mail strategist for Barack Obama’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns, said the McCorriffs campaign mismanaged discussions on education and critical race theory.

“I don’t think they got on it and changed it in the way it should be,” he said.

But Tuesday’s elections also revealed a broader message issue for the party.

“Democrats and Joe Biden have been elected to solve the problem, and all they have to do is fight for price tags,” Herman said. “If Congress doesn’t pass the bill right away and can get out there and start a campaign, there’s nothing to do.”

High voter turnout won’t save the Democratic Party

Seven years ago, Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.) Was almost absent from the 2014 Republican mid-term wave, barely hanging in a much more competitive race than everyone expected.

That year, less than 2.2 million Virginians emerged to vote for the lowest turnout midterm elections nationwide in the first century. Result: The Republican Party has been the closest to victory in Virginia since 2009.

At least 3.3 million votes have already been counted in this election, with even more votes remaining. It broke the record for elections outside the year — and democracy argues that high turnout always helps their candidates.

There is a problem with progressive

While Democrats roamed the country on Tuesday, the right shift of voters robbed progressives of some notable opportunities to open up victory at night.

Yes Michelle Wie Win the Mayor of Boston election.. And in Philadelphia, the district attorney Larry Krasner, a progressive prosecutor, I won the second term.

But even in the democratic country of Swath, voters were closer to the center than to the left. Democratic socialist Walton, who defeated Byron Brown, the mayor of the city’s Democratic Party at the Primary in Buffalo, New York and India, Seemed to lose to Brown’s writing campaign..Medium in Seattle Bruce Harrell ran ahead of the progressive Lorena Gonzalez At the race of the mayor of the city.

Perhaps most important are Minneapolis voters Overwhelmingly rejected Measures to overhaul the city police station. Measures that exposed Democrats to criticism aimed at “refunding police” during the city’s experience Rapid increase in violence, Replaced the department with “Public Security Bureau” and eliminated the minimum staffing requirements.

And it ended on Tuesday, in addition to the already burned moderate victory. Moderate Democrat Eric Adams won the New York City mayoral election. And in Ohio, Shontelle Brown won a special election and former Senator Mercia Fudge filled the vacant seats. Defeat Nina Turner, A prominent progressive Democrat in Primary earlier this year.

Progressive Democrats can make credible claims that they are not a problem. Bernie Sanders is not president. This is Joe Biden.

But in the aftermath of Tuesday’s results, Democrats are afraid of repeated explosions in the middle of next year, increasing pressure to pass infrastructure and social spending plans of all kinds. The resulting party drift is unlikely to go to the left, but could go to two Senators Nakamichi in the middle of those negotiations.

As one strategist wrote it in a text message late Tuesday, “Tonight really empowers. [Joe] With Manchin [Kyrsten] cinema. “