November 8, 2018

Gubernatorial Races

On Tuesday, Democrats gained seven governorships: Nevada, New Mexico, Kansas, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, and Maine.

New York Times

In Florida, Republican Ron DeSantis narrowly defeated Democrat Andrew Gillum; in Georgia, Republican Brian Kemp holds a narrow lead over Democrat Stacey Abrams.

AP News

See past issues

From the Left

The left is celebrating its gubernatorial gains, but is disappointed by the results in Florida and Georgia.

“Democrats flipped at least seven gubernatorial seats Tuesday, a significant achievement that could help undo years of harmful Republican policy — particularly when it comes to the gerrymandering efforts that help keep GOP politicians in control."


“The seven Democratic gains in governorships were the most for either party in a single year since 1994... [but] in a potentially ominous harbinger for the 2020 presidential election, Democrats lost races they aggressively targeted in the battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio, and Iowa. In Florida, Andrew Gillum’s narrow defeat to the Donald Trump ally Ron DeSantis, despite Gillum holding a lead in most polls, was particularly stinging for progressives."

The Atlantic

“For the third straight general election in a row, the Florida Democratic Party’s top candidates got shellacked. But unlike in past election losses, there are no easy scapegoats, no simple answers to what happened to Gillum and Nelson."


Regarding Georgia, “In the end, it looks like Kemp won. It’s impossible to know if his attempts to restrict the franchise are what pushed him over the line. But if the Georgia race had taken place in another country—say, the Republic of Georgia—U.S. media and the U.S. State Department would not have hesitated to question its legitimacy, if for no other reason than Kemp’s dual roles as candidate and election overseer... Kemp’s asterisk win suggests that the battle for voting rights, which many imagined was over and done with in the last century, is still very much in progress."

The Atlantic

From the Right

The right argues that Gillum and Abrams were too extreme, but worries that the races were so close.

The right argues that Gillum and Abrams were too extreme, but worries that the races were so close.

“Gillum and Abrams, among others, were supposed to prove the progressive theory that not only could unvarnished leftism win, it could win in the purplest of states. They... sort of proved that theory; they were very competitive, after all. But Gillum lost a race he was supposed to win, to a Trumpy candidate no less."

Hot Air

“Journalists had invested a great deal in the storyline that the floundering of Dems in Florida governor’s races was due to the paucity of progressive choices. Stop running centrists, they argued, and field a full-blown leftist and the Democratic rank-and-file will flock to the polls... The irony is that if the Dems had run a Manchin-like candidate this year... they could have won the governorship."

American Spectator

Many note that “Democrats are making in-roads. Abrams’ strategy of pumping up new registration and pushing hard on GOTV efforts – particularly in black and minority communities – is probably a strategy that will be repeated across the south by Democrats, and it’s not impossible to see them succeeding, either... If Texas, Florida, and Georgia had run candidates who were more appealing to the center, those races could have flipped easily."


Regarding claims of voter suppression in Georgia, “The claims against Kemp [are] off-base. For instance, during early voting and on Election Day, there were multiple reports about problems with polling stations and absentee-ballot requests. But these services are managed by county election boards, not the secretary of state’s office, and the places where the complaints were most numerous were in counties largely run by Democratic officials."

Spectator USA

Why did _________ cross the road? Alpaca climbs into backseat of taxi cab in Peru, flooded creek sends salmon swimming across road, and confused deer runs through Pennsylvania Walmart.


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