News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Karen Handel thanked President Trump for his support of her campaign, prompting the crowd to interrupt with cheers and chants of "Trump, Trump, Trump"-CNN, 6/20/17

6/20/17, "Republican Karen Handel wins Georgia House special election," CNN, Eric Bradnor

"Handel thanked Trump, who had tweeted his support for her campaign in recent days, by name -- prompting the crowd to interrupt with cheers and chants of "Trump, Trump, Trump.""...
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Update: Pollsters confounded again:

6/21/17, Update: 259,000+ votes tallied as of Wed. afternoon, 6/21 (updates 240,000 number (below) reported Tues. night)

"GOP turnout confounds pollsters in Georgia election," Politico, Steven Shepard 

"The surge of Republican voters even surprised the only public pollster to predict Karen Handel as the winner."

"The turnout surge surprised the only public pollster to predict Handel as the winner: the Atlanta-based Trafalgar Group, which released a poll the day before the election showing the Republican 2 points ahead. Trafalgar’s Robert Cahaly said Wednesday that their turnout prediction was “in the 230 [thousand] range” and that the surge of additional voters boosted Handel."...

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Added: Ossoff ended up with the same proportion of the vote, 48%, that Hillary won there in Nov. 2016:

6/21/17, "Why Ossoff Lost," The Atlantic, Molly Ball 

"After a frenzied two-month runoff campaign between Ossoff and his Republican opponent, Karen Handel, the Democrat wound up with about the same proportion of the vote—48 percentas Hillary Clinton got here in November,. If this race was a referendum on Trump, the president won it."...

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6/20/17, Added: Of 240,000 total votes, 150,000 had been cast before Tuesday 6/20 election day. "With all 208 precincts reporting, Ms. Handel had 51.9 percent of the vote to Mr. Ossoff's 48.1 percent." 3.8% margin
 
6/20/17, "Karen Handel Wins Georgia Special Election, Fending Off Upstart Democrat," NY Times, Jonathan Martin, Richard Fausset 

"Mr. Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan all came to Atlanta to help her raise money....
 

Voter turnout in April was already high for a spring special election, and it soared during the runoff, to more than 240,000, from more than 190,000. Nearly 150,000 voters cast ballots before the polls opened on Tuesday, nearly three times the early vote in the first round. And nearly 40,000 of those people had not voted at all in April.

By Tuesday, the fatigue among voters was palpable. Some residents posted warnings demanding that campaign workers stop knocking on their doors."...

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Added:

"In this district, Donald Trump only topped Hillary Clinton in it by 1.5 percentage points." Handel won by 3.8% (see above)

6/20/17, "Don't sugarcoat it--Ossoff's loss is a big disappointment, and a bad sign, for Democrats," Vox, Andrew Prokop


"Democrats need to outperform Hillary Clinton to take back the House. Ossoff did worse than her." [sic]...

"But it’s the Ossoff defeat that’s particularly painful for the party. Though former Rep. Tom Price (R) repeatedly cruised to victory in this district, Donald Trump only topped Hillary Clinton in it by 1.5 percentage points. This meant that, on the presidential level, the district was by far the most favorable to Democrats of those four open seats....

This race was indisputably the highest-profile contest, and therefore perhaps the most like what we’d expect the 2018 midterms to be — Republicans weren’t caught sleeping, like they were in a few of these other races.


Furthermore — and crucially — Donald Trump won the median House district by about 3.5 points. 

That means that if Republican candidates in high-profile contested races slightly outperform Trump or even slightly underperform him, the GOP will keep the House. Handel’s victory shows that, at this point, that’s still a definite possibility....

[Near end of article] Since Trump’s victory, there’s been a debate among Democrats about whether the party’s best chances for retaking power lie in improving their performance in areas full of educated, well-off white suburbanites, or whether the party is better off making a case to the white working class. To oversimplify, the Hillary Clinton wing of the party tends to like the former theory, and the Bernie Sanders wing tends to prefer the latter. 


Ossoff’s disappointing performance is a blow to the Clinton wing’s theory. Despite Trump’s sinking approval ratings, the Republican candidate still won an affluent suburban district that Trump himself barely pulled it out in. 

But the Sanders wing doesn’t have the clearest-cut counter-theory either. Sanders-friendly candidates like Rob Quist in Montana and James Thompson in Kansas have done better than Hillary Clinton did in their respective districts — but so did Archie Parnell, the former Goldman Sachs employee who lost the South Carolina race Tuesday night. 

All special elections are on different turf and have different issues and candidate dynamics at play. The one thing that is clear, though, is that Democrats haven’t found a winning formula for victory yet."




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