Detroit & Kenya Preview & Open Thread

Today there are a handful of minor elections: 8 legislative specials, an international race, and a meaningless mayoral race in Detroit. There isn’t enough to liveblog today, but here is an open thread to discuss any of these races.

Detroit: Today is the primary for Mayor of Detroit, but it’s not exactly interesting. Detroit has a population of around 675K (which is still dropping, though not quite as precipitously as it has been) that is roughly 85% Black, with a small Mexican community on the southwest side and a few white hipsters downtown. It had a PVI of D+44 (2008). This race is a California-Rules Top Two primary, so with only two serious candidates, today is essentially a straw poll for November’s real election. Incumbent Mike Duggan (D) is the first white mayor of the city since the 70s. Duggan is a typical machine hack liberal, but he has done a decent job of slowing the city’s freefall and even reversing the decline in some neighborhoods. Clearing that low bar is enough to make him a huge favorite for re-election to a second term. Duggan’s rival, State Sen. Coleman Young Jr. (D), son of Detroit’s polarizing 70s and 80s era mayor of the same name, is running to his left, accusing Duggan of not paying enough attention to the city’s poorest neighborhoods. Polls generally show Duggan leading Young by around 2:1, and it looks like that will be close to today’s result as well. Six other non-serious candidates are on the ballot, including four felons.

Kenya: The east African nation of Kenya is also holding its presidential election today. Kenya is a nation of 48M with a land area slightly smaller than Texas. Like many third-world democracies, Kenya’s politics are more clan- and personality-based than ideological. The two candidates for president are incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta and Ralia Odinga, his rival in the previous election. Both are wealthy and descendants of some of the nation’s founding leaders, and their families have dominated the nation for much of the time since independence. Polling shows Odinga with a slight lead; regardless of the result, observers are considering post-election violence to be likely between the nation’s various clans.

Legislative Specials: There are also 8 legislative specials at stake across 5 states: 3 generals, 4 primaries, and a primary runoff.
IA-LD-82 is probably the first legit shot for a contested R pickup in a legislative special this year. At stake is a formerly D-held R+12 (2016) seat covering much of the college town of Fairfield and rural areas to the south along the MO border. A pair of school board presidents, Phil Miller (D) and Travis Harris (R) are facing off. This is a very Trumpist area, but the seat voted for Obama in 2012. Between the new lean of the seat and the energized Dem base, I would say there is no clear favorite.
MO-SD-28 is an R+21 (2012) seat covering a broad swath of rural areas north of Springfield, from Lebanon to Sedalia. State Rep. Sandy Crawford (R) should be heavily favored over retired teacher Al Skalicky (D) for the seat.
is an R+13 (2012) seat covering the southern edge of the Columbia area and rural areas between Columbia and Jefferson City. Democrats have gone all-in on this seat on behalf of attorney and state legislative staffer Michaela Skelton (D), a cousin of ex-Rep. Ike (D). Skelton is facing lobbyist and GOP official Sara Walsh (R), who has the lean of the seat on her side but has trailed in fundraising. There is no clear favorite overall.
MI-LD-1 is a D+25 (2016) seat covering the wealthy northern half of the Grosse Pointes, the lower-middle-class suburb of Harper Woods, and the desperately poor northeast corner of Detroit. 11 Democrats are facing off; the primary winner will be the prohibitive favorite in the general. 2016 candidate and attorney Pam Sossi (D), who took over a third of the vote against the indicted prior incumbent in last year’s primary, is probably the front-runner this time with a more white-heavy electorate and fractured field. Two other 2016 candidates, congressional staffer Washington Youngson (D) and teacher Keith Hollowell (D), are also running. The other candidates in the race are Justin Johnson (D), the brother of indicted State Sen. Bert (D), school board member Tenisha Yancey (D), zoning board member Gowana Mancill Jr (D), attorneys Kirkland Garey (D) and Sandra Bucciero (D), and three Some Dudes. Sossi, Yancey, Mancil, and Johnson are considered the major candidates.
MI-LD-109 is a formerly-D-held R+3 (2016) seat covering the central Upper Peninsula from Marquette to Manistique. Four Democrats are facing off for the open seat. Marquette councilwoman and 2016 candidate Sara Cambensy (D) looks like the slight front-runner as she has name recognition from her prior run, but Marquette County commissioner Joe Derocha (D) has stronger establishment support. Two others, Sen. Debbie Stabenow staffer Jeremy Hosking (D) and Limestone Twp. councilman Tom Curry (D), also seem serious. The winner will face former school board president Richard Rossway (R).
OK-SD-45 is an R+21 (2016) seat covering some poor neighborhods south of downtown OKC and wrapping southwest around the Airport through deep-red southwestern exurbs near Mustang. Former State Highway Patrol chief Kerry Pettingill (R) looks like the slight favorite, but businessmen Duane Smith (R) and Paul Rosino (R) also seem serious. Attorney Scott Harris (R), physician Diane Means (R), businessman Brian Walters (R), and a Some Dude all look like longer shots. For Democrats, police dispatcher Steven Vincent (D) is the clear favorite over Noah Ynclan (D), who has no establishment support after revelations of a 2013 domestic violence conviction.
OK-LD-76 is an R+18 (2016) seat covering most of the western half of Broken Arrow in the Tulsa suburbs. Shelly Brumbaugh (R), widow of the prior Rep., is the clear favorite for the primary, but she faces four other Republicans. 2014 candidate Cliff Johns (R) seems like her most serious rival, but businessman Jess Guthrie (R), retired cop Ross Ford (R), and teacher Brian Elliott (R) are also in the race. Teachers Chris Vanlandingham (D) and Forest Mayer (D) are facing off for the Dem nomination; there is no clear favorite on that side.
SC-LD-31 is a D+23 (2016) seat covering central and western Spartanburg. Two Democrats are heading to a primary runoff: Spartanburg city councilor Rosalyn Henderson-Myers (D) and NAACP official Mo Abusaft (D). Henderson-Myers led Abusaft 39-32 two weeks ago and looks like a slight front-runner, but an upset is possible. The primary winner will be a prohibitive favorite in the general.

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  • Conservative First August 8, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    There’s an interesting race for Detroit city council (district 2). Crooked incumbent George Cushingberry is being challenged by former state senator Virgil Smith, who was forced from office after shooting at his ex-wife. The county prosecutor has been trying to void his plea agreement to prevent him from running, so far without success. Another challenger, Roy McCallister, has outraised both of them.

  • Republican Michigander August 8, 2017 at 12:53 pm

    Detroit: – I’m glad I don’t live there when I see the choices given to me. There’s hipsters on the SW side as well with the Mexicans as well as downtown. There’s still some white working class (including Middle Easterners) on the far west side (Parkland, southern Warrendale, and next to Redford), Albanians near Hamtramck, and some middle-upper middle class next to the Grosse Pointes, but most of them left the city after the residency clause was rescinded in the late 1990s.

    MI-LD-1 – Last names matter. I wouldn’t bet against the last name Hollowell in Detroit, nor Johnson.

    MI-LD-109 – That’s a 56% Obama 08 district. It may be “R+3”, but it’s a D leaning seat until proven otherwise. Hosking raised 34K, Derocha 26K, and Cambensy 12K. Curry raised only 2K, so I’m not seeing it from him. If I had to bet, I’d bet on Derocha. I think Cambensy (Emily’s list D while the UP leans pro-life) might be the candidate R’s would have the best shot against.

    MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

    • shamlet August 8, 2017 at 1:35 pm

      Cambensy benefits from name rec, plus if she’s the bold progressive there’s probably enthusiasm on her side. It’s an interesting dynamic – you’ve got more outside support for Hosking, more local insider support for Derocha, and more of a name rec/known brand factor for Cambensy. All 3 have a pretty wide path to victory.

      R, MD-7. Put not your trust in princes. Process is more important than outcome.

      • Republican Michigander August 8, 2017 at 3:17 pm

        Looking at other elections in that district.

        Alger County – Three township or city elections (Old School Yooper D county)
        Luce County – Only state house (Republican leaning county)
        Marquette County – Several elections across the county (including Marquette and Ishpeming)
        Schoolcraft County – Only state house

        While the bold progressive will help in part of Marquette City (22,000 people) thanks to Northern Michigan University, it won’t help as much in populist Ishpeming or the townships (about 45000 total – mostly D). I don’t expect much vote out of Luce (6600, R federally, swing locally), but Alger and Schoolcraft (combined 17,000) are also D leaning (although winnable for R’s).

        Historically, it’s a moderate district, with Prusi being the most liberal (average liberal except on guns). I don’t know Cambensy’s stance on guns. Could she win? Yes. Derocha types (UP Establishment) usually have most of the power there. John Kivela types are the norm for the area.

        BTW – I expect a higher black turnout in HD-1 because the Detroit mayor race is going on. The only other elections besides HD-01 in that district are Grosse Pointe City and Detroit City.

        MI-08 - Michigan is a red state again. We need a 50 state strategy and an 83 county strategy.

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    Thanks shamlet!

    29, M, R, NY-10

  • Lucas Black August 8, 2017 at 1:51 pm

    I’m surprised PPP didn’t poll Kenya and include Obama as one of the choices.
    (No, Obama’s not Kenyan – that’s just the sort of childish thing PPP does in every other race, though)

  • hfcon August 8, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    A bit more insight on the Kenyan elections:

    This is basically a re-run of the 2013 elections that featured Odinga (leader of the CORD coalition) against Kenyatta (leader of the Jubilee coalition). Take a look at a map of Kenya (results from the 2013 election are easily available with a quick search) to follow along here.

    Odinga’s power base is in the west of the country among the Luo people (Barack Obama’s father’s ethnic group) and the Luhya along the shores of Lake Victoria as well as in the urban slums of the major cities like Nairobi. Kenyatta’s base is in the Kikuyu highlands north of Nairobi and in the Kalenjin-dominated Rift Valley. Politics in Kenya is not quite clannish (that would be more Somalia), but rather more broadly ethnically divided. In some sense this is due to the vastly different geographies of the country–the Kalenjin of the Rift Valley were traditional highland herders (and not surprisingly produce most of the long-distance runners that Kenya is known for), the Kikuyu were traditionally upland farmers around Mount Kenya, and the Luo were lowland (in a very hot and humid area) farmers and fishers around Lake Victoria. In terms of raw numbers, the Kikuyu and Kalenjin have a big numbers advantage and registration advantage over the Luo and Luhya, so CORD has to make up a lot of ground in getting smaller ethnic groups across the country on board. There is some cross-ethnic voting, but not very much and it tends to happen in small enough amounts that cancel each other out.

    As far as the issues go, Odinga is more socialist and has for years been a major proponent of land reform. Kenyatta is pretty much status quo, which so far has led to a steadily growing economy but also a huge amount of corruption (Kenya’s Members of Parliament are some of the highest paid in Africa and get lots of nice fringe benefits). Kenyatta has parlayed the International Criminal Court’s investigation of him and his deputy president’s involvement in the 2007 election’s violent aftermath into an “us vs. outsiders” political boon for himself that expertly invoked anti-colonial sentiments and nationalism. Kenyatta is also associated with Kenya’s intervention in Somalia, which has had decidedly mixed results and several embarrassing debacles that damaged the prestige of the Kenyan army (a highly respected national institution, unlike the local police forces). The far northeast of the country, with major refugee camps of Somalis and a population that’s been terrorized by Al-Shabaab, went strongly for Kenyatta in 2013.

    When looking at the results, check out the Rift Valley, the coast, and Nariobi itself. The Rift Valley areas, which saw some of the major violence in the 2008 election’s aftermath, seem to be areas where Odinga hopes to be more competitive. The coastal regions around Mombasa are also somewhat contested with local Muslim leaders usually preferring CORD, but with lots of local issues and the potential for violence. And Nairobi itself will be an interesting bellwether–Odinga narrowly won it in 2013, but will need to rack up a big lead there if he wants to succeed this time.

    The final question is whether or not the results will be rigged. There was one rigorously-conducted exit poll of the 2007 election that showed major discrepancies in favor of Kibaki in some areas of the country, especially rural areas (though the sample size in those areas was also smaller for the poll, so its margin of error was longer). In 2013 a much-heralded electronic tallying system broke down. Odinga is understandably upset by these events, so he’s been promoting a parallel vote-counting effort based in neighboring Tanzania. Regardless of actual rigging, there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence of intimidation; it’s not quite so bad as back in a more authoritarian earlier era where voting was held for a time by Iowa-caucus-style “go stand in the corner for X candidate,” which made identifying dissidents very easy. But the fear of violence is definitely still there now, especially since this will likely be Odinga’s last run for president and his supporters believe (with some justification) that he’s been robbed in previous elections.

    Polls show this race is close or with Odinga in a narrow lead, but in 2013 Kenyatta won by a much larger margin than expected by the polls. It’s worth reading some of the local papers (the Daily Nation and the Standard have good websites) for coverage as the results come in–Kenyan politics is fascinating and highly competitive (the 2013 elections had a whopping 86% turnout of registered voters).


    • shamlet August 8, 2017 at 3:02 pm

      Very interesting, thanks!

      R, MD-7. Put not your trust in princes. Process is more important than outcome.

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 4:18 pm


      29, M, R, NY-10

    • segmentation_fault August 8, 2017 at 9:00 pm


      I think it will be rigged – Kenyatta’s people killed the elections administrator a few weeks ago.

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:31 pm

    Duggan: 15,509 votes; 61%
    Young: 7,793 votes; 30%

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:45 pm

      Mike Duggan 17,268 63%
      Coleman Young II 8,707 32%

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:14 pm

      74% of Precincts Reporting (441/590)
      Votes Split
      Mike Duggan 22,914 65%
      Coleman Young II 10,882 30%

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:48 pm

      83% of Precincts Reporting (494/590)
      Votes Split
      Mike Duggan 33,705 68%
      Coleman Young II 13,762 27%

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:36 pm

      90% of Precincts Reporting (532/590)
      Votes Split
      Mike Duggan 40,732 69%
      Coleman Young II 15,884 27%

      29, M, R, NY-10

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    Early votes in from Boone County, Mo (#MO50) Skelton(D) 195 Walsh (R) 81
    Boone accounts for 13 of 27 precincts in the district.

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:52 pm

      This is separate from the Boone early vote.

      State Representative – District 50 2 of 27 Precincts Reported
      Sara Walsh Republican 212 71.380%
      Michela Skelton Democratic 85 28.620%
      Total Votes: 297

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:12 pm

      Walsh (R) 510
      Skelton (D) 466
      8/27 reporting w Boone ABS +1 Boone pct included.

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:17 pm

      Missouri #MO50 Special Election
      14/27 Precincts Reported
      (R) Sara Walsh – 1197 67.93%
      (D) Michela Skelton – 564 32.03%

      I think all the remaining precincts are Boone.

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:23 pm

      Walsh R 1409
      Skelton D 931
      18/27 in all remaining precincts are in Boone

      Boone not looking so terrible with 4 precincts in. Lead should hold.

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:41 pm

      Calling it for Walsh (R).
      She won the latest batch of Boone precincts by a nice margin.

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:13 pm

      52-48 Walsh 100% in.

      Major underperformance. Par of the course in the Trumpocalypse.

      29, M, R, NY-10

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:44 pm

    Missouri #MO28 Special Election
    4/119 Precincts Reported
    (R) Sandy Crawford – 261 65.9%
    (D) Al Skalicky – 135 34.09%

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      Senator – District 28 13 of 119 Precincts Reported
      Sandy Crawford Republican 1,042 74.535%
      Albert J. Skalicky Democratic 356 25.465%
      Total Votes: 1,398

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:16 pm

      Missouri #MO28 Special Election
      43/119 Precincts Reported
      (R) Sandy Crawford – 3682 71.31%
      (D) Al Skalicky – 1481 28.69%

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:26 pm

      State Senator – District 28 109 of 119 Precincts Reported
      Sandy Crawford Republican 8,417 67.934%
      Albert J. Skalicky Democratic 3,973 32.066%
      Total Votes: 12,390

      I hope everyone is enjoying my below the fold liveblog….


      Next Tuesday, I’m planning on sleeping high up in the Swiss Alps.

      29, M, R, NY-10

      • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:15 pm

        Matching Romney numbers.

        But was 76-20 Trump.
        So major underperformance based on that.

        29, M, R, NY-10

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    State Representative District 1 (D)
    14% of Precincts Reporting (8/54)
    Votes Split
    Tenisha Yancey D 560 45%
    Pamela Sossi D 323 26%

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:51 pm

      State Representative District 1 (D)
      74% of Precincts Reporting (40/54)
      Votes Split
      Tenisha Yancey D 1,904 37%
      Pamela Sossi D 1,338 26%
      Sandra Bucciero D 610 12%
      Justin Johnson D 468 9%
      Washington Youson D 338 6%
      Keith Hollowell D 117 2%
      Burgess Foster D 65 1%
      Kirkland Garey D 61 1%

      shamlet got something wrong. Wow!

      29, M, R, NY-10

  • Conservative First August 8, 2017 at 8:51 pm

    Detroit area results

  • Mike1965 August 8, 2017 at 9:19 pm

    Trump endorses Luther Strange.


    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:24 pm

      This is Trump. There is no way he was going to spite him if he played nice with him.

      This is going to be a test case because we have many early polls.

      29, M, R, NY-10

  • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 9:57 pm

    Polls in Iowa close in 2 minutes.

    29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      Registered Democrats have returned 1,153 more ballots than Republicans in Iowa House district 82, as of today. The news will encourage supporters of Democratic nominee Phil Miller

      29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:43 pm

      Iowa HD 82 unofficial results:
      Van Buren Co.

      R-Harris 1031
      D-Miller 612
      L-Miller 14
      C-Hee 39

      waiting on 2 other counties

      29, M, R, NY-10

      • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:44 pm

        Iowa HD 82 unofficial results:
        Van Buren Co.

        R-Harris 2124
        D-Miller 1229

        Jefferson out. The most Dem part and the vast majority of the district.

        29, M, R, NY-10

        • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:58 pm

          Davis is included here.

          29, M, R, NY-10

      • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 10:47 pm

        GOPer Harris wins Van Buren 1,031-612. The Republican won it in the 2009 special 1,171-667

        29, M, R, NY-10

    • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 11:06 pm

      Unofficial results show Miller winning 4,021 votes to Harris’ 3,324.

      Jefferson all in.

      Trump won this district by over 20 points. Went narrowly for Obama.

      Trumpocalypse alert…

      29, M, R, NY-10

      • Son_of_the_South August 8, 2017 at 11:21 pm

        Huh. How can it be a Trumpocalypse alert if the district only went that strongly for Trump and voted for Obama in ’12? That makes no sense. We know that downballot shifts trail the top of the ballot by years, sometimes decades.

        24, R, TN-09
        Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • MosheM August 8, 2017 at 11:27 pm

          It’s all 3 specials of today combined. We underperformed in all by a lot.

          Also, we lost in 2012, you know…

          29, M, R, NY-10

          • Son_of_the_South August 8, 2017 at 11:50 pm

            Yes, but low-turnout specials are not directly comparable to presidential election turnout. I’m not saying it’s good. It’s not good. What I’m saying is that if a wave were coming, I’d expect to be seeing losses and underperformances (versus the previous numbers for the same race) much worse than these. The eventual midterm would be a wave if these numbers were a lot worse, but much less than the numbers themselves would suggest due to turnout differentials.

            24, R, TN-09
            Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

            • roguemapper August 8, 2017 at 11:54 pm

              The predictive value of special elections with regard to the following year’s midterm is limited at best, as many have noted in detail. What’s much more significant to me is that, with the notable exception of GA-06, the 2012 presidential results seem to be a much better fit for this year’s special elections than the 2016 presidential results.

              Dem NC-11

        • Vosmyorka August 8, 2017 at 11:33 pm

          55-45 D feels excessive for a seat that voted for Obama by 2 and has trended strongly right since then.

          Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3. Male, Russoanglohispanophone.

          • Son_of_the_South August 8, 2017 at 11:44 pm

            Not if there’s just really high turnout from the progressive types. We know that’s happening right now. That’s good for them, no doubt, but it won’t matter as much in a non-special.

            24, R, TN-09
            Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

        • roguemapper August 8, 2017 at 11:34 pm

          IA-HD-82 voted 58-37 for the Donald in 2016 and 50-48 for Obama in 2012. It looks like 55-45 D two-way for this special? That’s a pretty awful performance for the Rs.

          Dem NC-11

          • fzw August 8, 2017 at 11:35 pm

            Saw this earlier: Nixon and McCaskill both only got 48% in MO HD-50 in 2012 as they were winning statewide by double digits.

            Currently MO-5. From MO-3.
            R-leaning Indy.

            • Vosmyorka August 8, 2017 at 11:43 pm

              That makes it a bit too rosy for Dems, since downballot MO-2012 was marked by strong third-party performances. McCaskill won the seat 49-43, Nixon won the seat 49-47. (Romney, 60-38). It still maps out by universal swing to different shades of a high-single-digit Democratic statewide victory in Missouri, though.

              Right-leaning anti-Trump Indy. OH-3. Male, Russoanglohispanophone.

              • GOPTarHeel August 8, 2017 at 11:48 pm

                You’re not allowed to post facts here. Only wailing about the apocalypse or excitedly predicting a Democratic sweep of R+29 seats in the midterm.

                R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

                • fzw August 9, 2017 at 12:31 am

                  Huh. Must’ve missed where I’ve said that. I’ve been fairly quiet at RRH for the past few months, only commenting 2-3 days per week, and I think I’ve said things like “there’s a 0.4% chance Democrats take the Senate” and ‘NY AD-9 was mostly due to the NY Assembly Dems’ well-oiled machine and Pellegrino’s fundraising and isn’t really indicative of an impending Long Island wave’. I could be mis-remembering though, unless the passive-aggressiveness was aimed at other people.

                  Currently MO-5. From MO-3.
                  R-leaning Indy.

                  • GOPTarHeel August 9, 2017 at 6:02 am

                    There wasn’t a specific target to my snark. I’m just tired of how easily people in general seem to adopt the dem-leaning cw as the gospel truth.

                    R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

              • fzw August 9, 2017 at 12:11 am

                Of course not, and I fully expect Walsh to win her full term by 20 or so next year. And I don’t buy into the whole “Dems are going to gain 80 seats” mantra. I think they’re 50-50 at the House at best. I thought this result was worth pointing out though for all the people that think McCaskill is doomed, though, of which there’s several people here.

                Currently MO-5. From MO-3.
                R-leaning Indy.

            • roguemapper August 8, 2017 at 11:45 pm

              It’s certainly worth noting that for all the talk about how “Trumpy” this district or that district is none of the “Trumpy” districts seem to be voting in a “Trumpy” manner thus far in this year’s special elections. I’m almost convinced that “Trumpiness” is an irrelevant factor in downballot elections.

              Dem NC-11

              • Son_of_the_South August 8, 2017 at 11:52 pm

                Mmm, no, it’s just that shifts downballot tend to trail shifts up ballot. So it’s not that relevant now, but it likely portends shifts later.

                24, R, TN-09
                Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

                • roguemapper August 8, 2017 at 11:57 pm

                  Well, yes, downballot shifts do generally trail shifts up the ballot but it’s also worth noting that something has to happen at least twice before you have a trend. Until a shift is replicated it’s an aberration, not a trend.

                  Dem NC-11

                  • Son_of_the_South August 9, 2017 at 12:01 am

                    Sure, but a lot of these ‘Trumpy’ rural areas have been shifting right at different positions on the ballot and speeds for a long time. When it comes to the decently-sized dying industrial towns, yeah, this is fairly new.

                    24, R, TN-09
                    Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

                    • roguemapper August 9, 2017 at 12:41 am

                      If the idea though is to predict what will happen in the House and Senate elections next year then it obviously makes a big difference whether 2012 or 2016 is more predictive, especially when it comes to the Senate. That’s ultimately the point that I’m getting at. Of course the Dems need to do better than 2012 to retake the House and if the special elections are taken as predictive then they’ll do better but not better enough. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see!

                      Dem NC-11

                    • Son_of_the_South August 9, 2017 at 12:55 am

                      Oh no, I very much agree with you. 2012 is a lot more relevant, because even if 2016 isn’t an aberration, downballot trends will still likely be years behind the presidential numbers.

                      24, R, TN-09
                      Classical liberals are a minority. Fusionism is the answer.

                    • district1 August 9, 2017 at 1:27 am

                      That would be something if both parties end up with winning coalitions they can’t replicate. Turnout tanks and they fight harder and costlier than ever over the supposedly undecided scraps.

                      ex D flack (ex flack, not ex D)

              • Red Oaks August 9, 2017 at 7:05 am

                Maybe downballot elections only go in a “Trumpy” way when Trump is also on the ballot.

                MI-03: Tired of Presidency; Focused more on downballot races; Chris Afendoulis for State Senate

        • Indy1975a August 8, 2017 at 11:46 pm

          If we get 2006/2008 level performances in rural areas, it doesn’t bode well. Even at 2012 levels, it suggests that the gains made by Trump in 2016 (and for that matter by Rs in 2014) among the white working class aren’t holding. Which could be bad news in ousting incumbent D senators who have a lot of these rural voters.

          Independent, R until November 2016. Proud "Globalist Cuck"!

          • GOPTarHeel August 8, 2017 at 11:51 pm

            These are extremely low turnout races in states with solid R trifectas in the middle of vacation season. Hard to extrapolate 2018 from these results.

            R/NC-13. I'll never regret a vote that resulted in Neil Gorsuch.

            • GoBigRedState August 9, 2017 at 2:25 am

              For some reason, I don’t recall people using state legislative elections in past cycles as a predictor of congressional elections. I’m sick of the constant “Rs are underperforming Trump numbers in state legislative elections! We’re doomed!” mantra, especially when we aren’t talking about seats that are flipping control.

              45, NE-1, #NeverTrump in 2016, support Trump now as situation warrants

        • TennesseeMike August 8, 2017 at 11:47 pm

          Yeah, not much of a Trumpocalypse to me either. No seats changed hands. And if a special state house election cannot match the enthusiasm of a presidential campaign, is that really a surprise? Especially since some Democrat voters who hated Hillary voted for Trump. Some of those Democrat voters likely went back to voting Democrat when they had a candidate they could support.

          TN-2 District. A Social and Fiscal Conservative Republican

  • Tekzilla August 8, 2017 at 11:30 pm

    Some big swings tonight. Still very far from 2018 though.

    36/M/NY-01 (D)

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