Sunday, 21 October, 2018

Democrat O’Connor has lead in early OH returns

Crystal ball time Where are we headed politically Getty Images
Kenny Thornton | 08 August, 2018, 09:04

In Ohio, the script for the special election was somewhat familiar: An experienced Trump loyalist, Balderson, was fighting a strong challenge from O'Connor, a fresh-faced Democrat, in a congressional district held by the Republican Party for more than three decades.

"That this race is too close to call speaks volumes about Danny O'Connor's strength and Republicans' expensive, failed playbook", said Rep.

Republicans appeared to have held off a Democratic surge on Tuesday in a traditionally conservative OH district many Democrats had hoped would serve up an unlikely victory and boost their chances of sweeping wins in November's midterm elections.

Trump himself campaigned at Balderson's side just 72 hours before Election Day, a weekend appearance to help energize his loyalists in a district the president carried by 11 percentage points.

The current governor - who took on his role in January after Gov. Sam Brownback left state politics to join the Trump administration - raised more money than Kobach, received the National Rifle Association's endorsement, committed to his pro-life views and earned support from Kansas political legend Bob Dole.

But just as with other special elections in the 2018 cycle where Democrats waged a competitive race on red turf, from Alabama's Senate seat to Pennsylvania's 18th District, Republicans started to see danger signs as the election drew nearer.

The big take away from the GOP's apparent narrow victory in the Ohio-12 special election on Tuesday night is this: Buckle up, because both parties are going to go all out over the next three months to maintain control of the House of Representatives.

On Tuesday night, he appeared to take credit for the Culberson win amid the congratulations.

"I've worked in OH presidential and senate races for Republicans and the idea of #oh12 being a close race is sort of like hearing gravity is a regional phenomena", tweeted Republican strategist Stuart Stevens.

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There could be a sentiment among allies that, "Finally the Trudeau government is getting poked back in the eye by the Saudis". Freeland would only tell reporters Monday that the Canadian ambassador is "fine" and would not disclose his location.

Trump made his preference clear for Kobach.

"While we won tonight, this remains a very tough political environment and moving forward, we can not expect to win tough races when our candidate is being outraised", said Corry Bliss, executive director of the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC that is working to keep the Republican majority in the House.

Republicans focussed on mobilising their voters through negative advertisements portraying the Democratic candidate as a puppet of coastal elites while the Democrats' messaging centred on protecting access to healthcare and social security.

Today is primary election day in Kansas.

Should the polarizing Kobach win, some Republican operatives fear he could lose the governor's seat to Democrats this fall. Debbie Stabenow, who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

But political observers said the fact the race was so close in a district that Democrats have not held since Ronald Reagan was president was notable. Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Trump critic, endorsed Balderson and Vice President Mike Pence visited. Bernie Sanders and ascending political star, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a NY congressional candidate.

O'Connor dominated Balderson on the local airwaves.

Schuette will face Michigan Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer in November, who claimed the nomination in one of Democrats' top pick-up opportunities this fall.

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