This One Issue Could Decimate the Midterm “Blue Tidal Wave”

If Republicans focus and make this the issue of the 2018 midterms it is way too soon to write their political epitaph.

Almost since the admittedly hilarious reactions of stunned media unfolded during the shocking 2016 election returns, Democrats have been talking about the 2018 midterms. Every special election since that November night has been obsessively covered as a “bellwether” for what was coming in the 2018 Congressional races. And it’s all been good news for Democrats. Even when Republicans won or held seats, like Karen Handel’s defeat of Jon Osoff in Georgia, the mainstream press reported how narrow the victory was and how that portended good things for the left.

The New York Times has, of course, been right in the middle of this anticipating fervor. And they aren’t letting up:

Republicans in Congress, including several powerful committee chairmen, are rushing to retire rather than face re-election in the fall, a clear recognition that President Trump’s low approval rating will be a heavy weight on the party even with an improving economy.

Remember that last line. The Times went on to discuss the recent retirement announcement of Republican Ed Royce in California, as well as the upcoming decision from Republican representative Martha McSally to leave vacant her House seat for a run at the Senate. To hear the Times tell it, these open seats not only put in jeopardy the Republican majority in the House of Representatives, but all but confirm a Democrat tidal wave.

I’m not a pollster and I don’t claim to be following the 435 races around the country with any diligence whatsoever. But I think there are a couple things to note about Democrat optimism.

First, it sounds eerily familiar to the same optimism that preceded the 2016 elections. Even on that fateful election night, as chronicled in numerous YouTube media compilations, the talking heads were discussing a probability that the Democrats would take Congress AND the White House. The latter was regarded a fait accompli. The polls all said it was done and over. No reason to even have a vote.

But it didn’t happen, and Democrats were left reeling.

Second, for all the number crunching and predictive analysis that certainly could prove true this time, it is January. That’s 11 months away from the elections. Go back to that last line of the Times’ article above – “even with an improving economy.”

Earlier this week, conservative commentator Guy Benson noted:

“Trump hits Democrats on tax reform: Every single D in Congress voted against tax cuts for working and middle class families. Fact check: True.”

If Republicans can focus and make this the issue of the 2018 midterms, with as ham-fisted and disorganized as they have been throughout the first year of Trump’s presidency, it is way too soon to write their political epitaph.

Yes, people are annoyed. Yes, people are fed up with Washington. Yes, that almost always portends midterm losses (many times substantial) for the party that holds the White House, not to mention both houses of Congress. But there’s a reason Bill Clinton’s cheerleaders popularized the phrase, “It’s the economy, stupid.” Because right or wrong, when it comes to voters demanding change in Washington, it’s usually the economy that dictates their actions.

The bitter partisanship of D.C. and the Trump derangement on the left led the Democrats to oppose these significant tax cuts. If Republican messaging on that is solid, coupled with the expected economic boom tax cuts usually produce, Democrats could have another disappointing election night on the horizon.

And they’d have themselves to thank for it.

Both Democrats and Republicans have been disappointing!

I agree that if the economy stays strong by election day the republicans may do fine. But I also wouldn’t be surprised if there was a recession.
We are overdue for one, and I can see an “App” bubble bigger then the .com bubble that burst in the 90’s.
How long can a company like UBER keep burning through VC money without turning a profit? Eventually the house of cards will fall on silicone valley and that’s going to have effects across the economy.

It won't matter. Follow the RCP polling average. Dems have led the Generic Congressional Ballot surveys by double-digits almost continuously since Trump was inaugurated. His approval numbers continue to languish in the high thirties. Remember: most people don't vote issues, they vote feelings. And most people loathe Donald Trump. And while it's true that in the past generation there's been less of a connection between the presidential and congressional levels at the ballot box, Trump has so nationalized both is support and his opposition that his massive unpopularity almost can't avoid having an anchor-like effect on GOP congressional candidates next November. The "blue wave" is coming, and there's nothing the GOP can do to escape it. Only the Democrats can screw it up.

^^ JASmius is sadly correct in his observation that sheeple vote their feels. Exit polls in 2012 showed that vast majorities thought Romney was better equipped to fix the Obama-ruined economy, but because they flipped and felt Obama "cares more about people like me" they stuck with the already proven failure* for feels rather than do what they knew intellectually was right for the country.

While Trump Chumps swoon for His Royal Orangeness' mean tweets, the fact that after a year no sane adult has broken Trump's thumbs, smashed his phone, locked his Twitter account, ANYTHING to stop the self-inflicted wounds and own goals shows how clueless they are about how this is playing outside their bubbles. Apologists bleat that Trump is talking over the biased media when he's actually providing all the excuses the corrupt, liberal JournoList media needs to ignore successes in favor of drama. Trump doesn't tweet about how ISIS has been virtually eradicated; he tweets about what a "stable genius" he is and the size of his nuclear button.

Real mature and it allows the media to spend days fulminating about his mental health and that's going to win things for Dems in November even if the economy roars to 4% growth, unemployment falls for real (U-6, not U-3), the market passes 30K and people have more money thanks to tax cuts. Sheeple will look at the prosperity and say, "Yeah, but he's a jerk, so I'm voting Democrat," in the inverse to how they voted in 2012, "Yeah, Obama doesn't know how to fix things, but he cares about me**, so I'm sticking."

  • I understand why people voted for Obama in 2008: They were ignorant (thanks to the media) and frightened (thanks to the Dodd-Frank-Pelosi-Reid crash) and McCain was a grumpy old man compared to the cool black guy Oprah was selling. People wanted to prove they weren't racist, so they made the ultimate affirmative action hire. But there's no excuse for them doubling-down on failure by re-electing him. Everyone parroted Bubba Clinton's line about how "no one could've fixed the damage in just one term," but wouldn't admit that if we were talking about whether President McCain should get more time, they'd be tossing him out for being a failure.

** Based on WHAT????

I see the "Trump approval ratings" as a paper tiger waved by the democrat party and their media lackeys. If Trump;s approval were so dismal, how could he garner the SRO and waiting line crowds whenever he makes an appearance? The real demon facing congress is the ritualized kabuki dance between the intransigent democrats and the win phobic republicans who became all too comfortable with democrat leadership.

Y’all just lookin’ foolish here, people. It comes down to these three words - wait and see.

The 2018 election will be a war with the establishment of both parties. How many current members of congress will drop out because of scandal, or seeking another office? Where are the congressional ratings? The Democrats have more senate seats to defend, they have the obstructionist tag. Redistricting for the House will not take place until after the 2020 election. Will the congressional hearings turn up anything this year? In 2016 Trump won the people but not the establishment. It could be a vote to impeach or not impeach.

For me, the BIG question: Can? the RINO WHIGS presents coherent consistent message to the electorate? Not one single Democrat voted for the Tax cut BILL that was signed into LAW. Even before the BILL was signed and since, numerous companies have said that they will increase worker wages, offer bonus, increase charitable contributions, bring back into the country dollars overseas to invest in their company, invest in infrastructure or any combination. This issue alone can destroy the Dems. Will the RINO WHIGS shoot themselves in the Collective foot?

im_frank is right. Wait and see.