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Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Here's how Bizarro World saw the election last night

by digby

You'd think she would be just a tiny bit embarrassed with that ridiculous bit of Trump-fluffing but I doubt she's capable of it.  The need to constantly spout absurd happy talk about him and his great achievements must be wearing though.

In the real world, Republicans aren't quite so ecstatic about the election results, but they are still completely addicted to Dear Leader, no matter what:

Democrats’ claim of victory Tuesday in Kentucky’s gubernatorial race, as well as the Democratic takeover of the Virginia state legislature, left Republicans stumbling and increasingly uncertain about their own political fates next year tied to an embattled and unpopular president.

Many allies of President Trump rushed to explain away the poor performance of incumbent Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) as an anomaly, while other GOP veterans expressed alarm about the party’s failure in a state where Trump won by nearly 30 percentage points in 2016 — and where he just campaigned this week.

Although Bevin was controversial and widely disliked, he was also a devotee of the president, embracing Trump’s agenda and his anti-establishment persona. And in the contest’s final days, Bevin sought to cast his candidacy as a bulwark against House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry of Trump.

But Bevin’s attempt to nationalize his cause by stoking conservative grievances about the impeachment process was not enough to overcome his problems nor was Trump’s raucous rally for the governor on Monday — raising questions about Trump’s political strength as he faces a barrage of challenges and a difficult path to reelection.

The outcome — with Democrat Andy Beshear claiming victory with a lead of several thousand votes and Bevin refusing to concede — underscored how Republicans are struggling to navigate choppy political waters as the 2020 campaign now begins in earnest. Trump continues to dominate the party, but many lawmakers are uneasy about their ability to defend his conduct and hold on to suburban support.

Few Republicans, however, are willing to even lightly criticize Trump since they widely believe they will need his voters’ backing and enthusiasm in order to survive next year.

Still, the Kentucky defeat has sparked concern among the party’s donors and many longtime GOP leaders who are worried that the nonstop twists of the House impeachment inquiry and Trump’s growing fury are making it increasingly difficult for Republicans to make a clear and compelling case to voters.

“It was a rough night,” said Scott Reed, the chief political strategist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “The Republican Party is lacking message discipline, and that needs to be addressed. There is a lot of positive news around President Trump’s governing on the economy, on regulations and judges, and it seems to be overwhelmed by the drama.”
Allies of McConnell, the Senate majority leader, argued that Bevin’s loss did not indicate any looming trouble for him, who is up for reelection in 2020 and is working to hold the Senate GOP together amid the impeachment debate.

“Republicans won every office on the ballot except [Bevin’s],” Scott Jennings, a longtime McConnell adviser, wrote on Twitter. “Some unique candidate problems. GOP brand was fine elsewhere.”

Trump’s campaigning fared better in deep-red Mississippi, where Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves (R) defeated Democratic attorney general Jim Hood on Tuesday in that state’s governor’s race.

Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) said in an interview prior to the race being called that campaigns in the Deep South, including the Mississippi gubernatorial contest, have drawn attention because both parties are giving them serious attention and fielding candidates with the ability to win statewide.

In late 2017, Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.) won a special election for U.S. Senate, giving Democrats hope of a comeback in similar states.

“We had two statewide officials running against each other and we haven’t had that in years,” Wicker said. He dismissed the suggestion that Trump’s standing could diminish. “If this race was about Trump, it’d be a 60-40 race” in Republicans’ favor.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.), reflecting the views of several Senate Republicans on Tuesday, said he did not see Kentucky as a bellwether for 2020 even if the president was making it sound that way during his remarks at Monday’s rally.

“It’s not a national race except in the sense the president wants to make it about him,” Cornyn said. “Nobody likes to lose, but I wouldn’t call it a bellwether for 2020. Look, if the Democrats elect Elizabeth Warren as their nominee, I think it’s going to come at a price for them.”

“Bevin’s got his own problems,” Cornyn said. “That’s unrelated to national politics.”

Yeah, it's unrelated to national politics. Trump isn't a problem at all. The suburbs turning blue all over the country is a total coincidence. Keep telling yourselves that.