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Tag: 2020 congressional races

Poll Shows Biden Ahead In Deep-Red Texas District

Reprinted with permission from DailyKos

To showcase just how extensively Trump's decline has shifted the playing field, the DCCC shared with the Washington Post details of an in-house poll it conducted of Texas' deep-red 25th Congressional District that finds Joe Biden edging Donald Trump 47-46 and puts Republican Rep. Roger Williams up just 45-43 on his Democratic challenger, attorney Julie Oliver.

That's a huge shift from 2016, when Williams' district went for Trump by a wide 55-40 margin. And that's exactly what Republicans intended: The 25th is part of a careful gerrymander that cracked the Austin area six ways and allowed the GOP to win five of those seats. One of those is Williams' district, which stretches far to the north toward Dallas-Forth Worth, combining a slice of the state capital with rural regions well outside of it.

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Kansas GOP Congressman Busted For Election Felonies -- Including Voter Fraud

Republican Rep. Steven Watkins of Kansas was charged with three felonies on Tuesday by Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay.

Watkins is accused of unlawfully voting in advance, voting without being qualified to do so, and interfering with law enforcement, according to KSNT, a Topeka TV station. He is also reportedly charged with a misdemeanor for failing to change his address with the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Kagay said the ongoing pandemic had delayed the investigation. It was originally conducted by the Shawnee County Sheriff's Office.

Watkins represents Kansas's Second Congressional District.

Many on Twitter observed the irony of the fact that, despite the Republican Party's obsession with voter fraud — which is generally rare — this is another instance in which a figure in the GOP is implicated in the crime.

Internal Polls Show Trump Jeopardizing Safe GOP House Seats

Republicans entered the 2020 cycle as longshots to win control of the House back after the party was unceremoniously swept out of power in the midterm elections.

But the GOP hoped to at least chip away at the Democrats' majority in November, when Democrats will be defending 31 seats Donald Trump carried in 2016.

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California GOP Backs QAnon Conspiracist For Congress

Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters.

While California and the United States as a whole are breaking coronavirus case records, the California Republican Party has been backing the congressional bid of coronavirus conspiracy theorist and writer Mike Cargile.

Cargile, who is a QAnon conspiracy theorist, has claimed that the coronavirus is a "scamdemic" and "NOTHING compared to the diseases and plagues headed this way via the rats and the homeless"; and has praised the lie-filled Plandemic video as "EXACTLY why I'm in this race!"

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Democratic Candidates Use Their Campaigns To Serve Hardest-Hit Communities

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the 2020 campaign, forcing candidates to cancel rallies, creating organizing challenges, and even calling into question how voters can safely cast ballots in November.

But as political operatives grapple with how to run a campaign in the middle of a public health crisis, a number of Democratic members of Congress and candidates are putting their campaigns to work for good — raising money for local food banks, collecting essential items for front-line health care workers, and distributing critical information to help their constituents stay informed.

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Poll: Democratic Congress Sees Rising Support For 2020 Re-Election

Roughly six in 10 Americans say their member of Congress deserves to be reelected in November, according to a Gallup poll released Monday. That level of support is almost 10 points higher than in early 2018, when Republicans were still in control of the House of Representatives.

In the 2018 midterm elections, Democrats picked up 40 House seats and won back the House majority for the first time in almost a decade. Many of the Democratic victories came from suburban districts, including areas that were once Republican strongholds like Orange County, California.

“Democrats have a solid majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, and the elevated 59 percent of Americans saying their member of Congress deserves reelection augurs well for their bid to maintain their majority next year,” Gallup wrote about the poll.

A higher percentage of Americans saying their member of Congress deserves to be reelected correlates with a higher percentage of Congress members who are reelected the following November, Gallup noted. Gallup pointed to high reelection rates from 1998 through 2004, which corresponded with Americans’ relatively high support of their member of Congress.

“It’s gonna be pretty tough for Republicans to get back in the majority,” Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA), a member of the moderate New Democrat Coalition, said in a phone interview in early February, before the Gallup poll was released. Bera pointed to different data to back up his claim: polls that ask Americans if they favor voting for a generic Democrat or a generic Republican.

This type of generic polling is “usually is a good indicator of what folks are thinking,” Bera said.

According to an average of these generic polls from FiveThirtyEight, Democrats currently have a 7-point lead over Republicans, 48 percent to 41 percent. On Election Day 2018, Democrats held a 9-point lead, 51 percent to 42 percent.

If 2019 statewide elections are a precursor for what could happen in 2020, Democrats like Bera have more data points to support their optimism.

Louisiana re-elected Gov. John Bel Edward, a Democrat, in a state Trump carried by 20 points in 2016. In Kentucky, voters ousted Republican Gov. Matt Bevins in favor of Democrat Andy Beshear.

Further, voters in Virginia elected a Democratic majority to the state House and state Senate, giving Democrats control of the legislature and governorship for the first time in 26 years.

“Never say never,” Bera said, “but if I were making a wager, I would say we’re going to retain the House majority.”

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

Rep. King Is 101st GOP Member To Leave Congress Since Trump Took Office

New York Republican Rep. Peter King’s retirement announcement on Monday marked a major milestone: He is now the 101st House Republican to leave Congress since Donald Trump’s election in 2016.

When Trump was sworn in, Republicans held the House majority with 241 members. Since then, 101 of those members either retired, ran for another office, took up jobs in the Trump administration, or lost reelection — a massive 42 percent drop, according to an NBC News analysis.

Major names are among that list, including former House Speaker Paul Ryan. And the exodus could be a sign that Republicans do not feel the majority is within reach in 2020.

Republican retirements helped pave the way for Democrats to ride a so-called “blue wave” in 2018, when they won the majority back from the GOP for the first time in nearly a decade.

Many of the retirements were in districts that Democrats won at the presidential level, but the Republican lawmaker in the seat was able to win thanks to their own personal brand.

King fits that mold. Former President Barack Obama carried King’s suburban Long Island district in 2008 and 2012, but King was able to notch victories by painting himself as a moderate Republican — despite his Islamophobic rhetoric and support of a U.K.-designated terror group, the Irish Republican Army.

Now that he’s gone, Democrats have a better shot at picking up his seat.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee — which exists to help Democrats win House elections — put King on its “retirement watch list” of GOP members it predicted would choose to leave Congress rather than face tough reelection bids.

“Congressman Peter King’s retirement, from a heavily suburban Long Island district, underlines just how serious Republicans’ problems are in swing districts across this country,” Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL), chair of the DCCC, said in a statement. “New York’s 2nd Congressional District has been a pickup target of ours from day one of this cycle, and we will compete to win it in 2020.”

So far, five of the members on the DCCC’s 2020 retirement watch list have announced their departures: Reps. Rob Woodall of Georgia, Susan Brooks of Indiana, Pete Olson of Texas, and Kenny Marchant of Texas. King is the fifth.

In 2018, only six of the 16 members the DCCC had on its retirement watch list returned to Congress.

Published with permission of The American Independent.