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Democrats win Missouri Special Election – in district that went big for Trump
Gage Skidmore / CCL
Republicans have reason to be worried heading into the midterm elections in November. In recent months, the GOP has lost not only special elections at the federal level, but the party has been defeated in state and local contests, including a recent battle in Missouri.
On Tuesday, Democrats won a Missouri House seat in a special election in a district that President Trump won in a landslide in 2016. The result is already sending shockwaves and panic to the Republican leadership, nine months before millions of Americans head to the polls.
As Governor Scott Walker (R-WI) tweeted in response to a January electoral loss, the results need to serve as a “wake up call” for the party.
Democrats Flip Trump-Dominated District
In 2016, the 97th District in Jefferson County gave President Trump a 28-point victory. Just over a year later, Democrats achieved a 31-point swing. That is a remarkable turnaround.
Democrat Mike Revis defeated Republican David Linton by three percent. Revis, a 27-year-old procurement manager, will now replace John McCaherty in the Missouri House of Representatives.
The district has historically voted for the Democrats, but it has gone red in recent years. Perhaps it was Revis’s conventional center Democratic message: more education funding, greater access to healthcare, and assistance in for blue-collar laborers.
But should the GOP be as anxious as some suggest? There were three other special elections held in Missouri on Tuesday, and the Republicans were successful in maintaining their supermajority in the House.
Whatever the case may be, Democrats are calling the victory “enormous.” Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) Executive Director Jessica Post said in a statement:
Representative-elect Mike Revis’s victory tonight will undoubtedly send another shockwave through the GOP as we continue to run the best candidates focused on addressing local issues and improving their neighbors’ quality of life.
The DLCC continues to be impressed by our dedicated and talented slate of candidates, who have stepped up to run in these precedent-setting special elections.
Right now, the Republicans are benefiting from their sweeping wins during the era of former President Obama, which has allowed them to hold majorities in state legislatures.
A Changing Tide Ahead of Midterm Elections?
At the beginning of President Trump’s tenure, the GOP seemed to be unstoppable, winning consecutive special elections. However, in recent months, the Republicans do appear to be beatable, despite the fatuous behaviors and lack of policy among Democrats.
In September 2017, Democrats scored double-digit victories in special elections held in New Hampshire and Oklahoma.
Republican Roy Moore lost his bid for an Alabama U.S. Senate seat to Democrat Doug Jones just three months later. For the first time in about a decade, a Democrat will represent a deep-red state in Washington. It should be noted, however, that allegations of sexual harassment and assault were likely responsible for Moore’s downfall.
Last month, Democrat Patty Schachtner won a state Senate seat in Wisconsin. This seat has been held by Republicans for nearly 20 years, and the upset victory occurred in a district that Trump won by 17 points in the general election.
Overall, since Inauguration Day, the Democrats have flipped 35 contested seats. It hasn’t been so rosy for the Republicans: the GOP has only flipped four Democrat-controlled seats in contrast.
When considering the dozens of Republican representatives and senators who have announced their retirements or resignations, it could spell trouble for both the GOP and Trump come November. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan was right when he said the party needs to perform an autopsy to determine the mounting problems in the last six months.
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