Having managed to secure victories in Virginia and Kentucky, can the Democrats keep up the momentum with the presidential election only a year away?
On Nov. 5, for the first time in over 20 years, the Democratic party managed to secure complete control over the state of Virginia after winning both the House and the Senate in the Virginia General Assembly during last week’s elections. Due to their victory, the Democrats have earned two extra seats in the Senate (gaining a 21-19 majority) and six extra seats in the House (gaining a 55-45 majority).
The state of Kentucky has been washed over by the Blue Wave as well, with Democrat Andy Beshear toppling his challenger, Gov. Matt Bevin (R) to become Kentucky’s newly-elected governor. Despite the polling results, Bevin has challenged the outcome, refusing to concede and claiming that there were “irregularities” during the vote.
The about-face from the pair of traditionally red states could be taken as a warning sign for the GOP. Prior to Tuesday’s election, President Trump held a large rally in Lexington, Kentucky, urging voters to ensure Bevin’s re-election.
“If you lose, it sends a really bad message,” Trump told his fans. “You can’t let it happen to me.”
And yet, they did. Despite efforts to mobilize the Republican voting base around the issue of abortion in both states, which led to hundreds of thousands of dollars spent in anti-abortion ads and Bevin dubbing himself “America’s most pro-life governor” while nicknaming his opponent “Abortion Andy,” we saw a repeat of the Blue Wave that took place during the 2018 midterms.
As of this writing, President Trump currently holds a 41.4% approval rating and has been involved in a myriad of scandals since the beginning of his presidency, the most recent one being his court-mandated order to pay $2 million to several nonprofit organizations to settle a civil lawsuit alleging that the Trump Foundation unlawfully coordinated with Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
In addition, 64% of Americans say that they are “more enthusiastic” about voting, according to a newly-released Gallop poll.
With the Republicans weaving elaborate tales to explain Tuesday’s losses and Trump insiders broadcasting their concerns about the future, the chance of Trump steamrolling to an easy re-election 12 months from now looks more and more slim as the days go on and the accusations pile up.
After two back-to-back victories in two years, the Democrats have their eyes fixed on getting a hat trick in 2020.