Dems, center-right seem to not want to learn their lessons from Staunton: Hey, whatever
Gotta say, I’ve been impressed with the CYA from the pundits, center-right on over to the center-left, poking holes in my analysis of what happened in Staunton last week.
Here we go, with the laundry list.
It wasn’t that voters were voting for Republicans, but rather, voting against the Democrats.
The incumbents foolishly furloughed firefighters right before the election.
It’s a nonpartisan election. No Rs or Ds beside their names.
This was a one-off. Democrats in Richmond aren’t worried.
I didn’t assume that Democrats in Richmond wouldn’t be worried.
That’s why I wrote the hell out of that story last week, to get them worried.
The odd way things work in life is that not only did my attempt there not work the way I intended, but it was the other side that took the ball and ran with it.
Which, victory laps for being ahead in the first quarter are odd, but, whatever, so be it, have at it.
Turnout, if you can call it turnout, when the bulk of the voting was done by mail, was more than double what was seen in recent cycles in Staunton.
Because it was mostly done by mail, it was influenced heavily by, you guessed it, mail.
The Republican candidates in this race – and if you think voters didn’t know who they were, you’re fooling yourself, not anybody reading your drivel – used the mail expertly to aid their cause.
Whereas the Ds – again, folks knew who they were, and you’re embarrassing yourself asserting otherwise – just expected to win, because they’d been on a long winning streak in Staunton.
Think Hillary, Midwest, 2016.
All you saw out of the Ds in Staunton with regard to mail was: complaints about how the Rs were using the mail to their advantage.
The Rs in Staunton, to their credit, didn’t take anything for granted.
The tailwind pushing them down the track from everything the Democrats did wrong was nice, but tailwind means nothing if you don’t use it right.
It’s not enough to be the best candidate.
Everybody running for office thinks they’re the best candidate.
Barack Obama didn’t win with two pretty substantial majorities in 2008 and 2012 because he was the best candidate.
He won because he had the most organized campaign that we will probably ever see in our political lifetimes.
Which gets us to the impact of the Second Amendment sanctuary nonsense.
Yes, this fits here.
We all knew the 2A nonsense from the winter wasn’t about 2A, but rather, was about November, and gemming up turnout on the right.
You could look at it as a Hail Mary, except that you don’t see teams throwing Hail Marys in the first quarter.
You run a play in the first quarter to see how the other team defends it, and then you play off how they defend it when it’s winning time, late third, into the fourth.
I have to concede, I didn’t see the 2A strategy having any chance at having legs to be something Republicans could play off this fall.
Yeah, yeah, folks in the hinterlands would get their bloomers all wadded up, but it was a sound and fury signifying nothingburger.
I’m not saying what happened in Staunton means Democrats in Virginia – and elsewhere – are doomed in November.
I am saying it seems to me that there are some fundamentals to this election that are starting to feel oddly like what transpired back in 2016.
Democrats had no business letting that one even be close enough for the vagaries of the Electoral College to come into play.
Ultimately, it was hubris that set the tone for Orange Badman to be able to steal that one on Election Night.
And I’m seeing the same hubris rearing its head in 2020.
People who should know better opining about expanding the electoral map to make Republicans have to defend their turf.
Wow, Utah, Arizona, Georgia – they all might be in play!
Isn’t this great!
Don’t believe me when I tell you that what happened in Staunton last week is a sign of what might happen in November.
That Republicans aren’t energized.
That Democrats, when the chips are down, will kumbaya around the establishment candidate, even though they had a better establishment candidate in 2016.
For every center-right Republican you introduce me to who identifies as Never Trump, I’ll introduce you to at least one center-left who is frustrated with their Democratic governor over the lockdowns.
You can argue with me until the cows come home.
I’d rather you roll up your sleeves.
Story by Chris Graham