Further Post Mortem Rumblings

Continued reflections on yesterday’s elections—

The Trump Factor. I agree with Megan McArdle’s third point.The Republican loss for governor in Maryland is an example of her third point. Trump backed Dan Cox in the primary. The alternative to Cox was a RINO with close ties to the popular sitting RINO governor. A Republican can’t win a statewide race in Maryland without substantial support from Democrats, and Cox lost by a 2:1 margin, essentially the ratio of Democrat to Republican voter registration in the state.

UPDATE—Trump isn’t solely to blame for the GOP’s poor performance yesterday. Polling consistently showed that most Americans believe the country is not on the right track. The Republicans never framed a coherent message explaining what they proposed to do to redirect the country in a better direction. Except in a few exceptional races, they never gave the public something to vote for.

UPDATE 2—This should be strike three for Beto O’Rourke.

UPDATE 3—Here’s an example of what a strong candidate with a resonating message can do. It turns out that Lee Zelden probably had coattails even when he lost in his own race. Take a look at the House race maps for 2020 and 2022.It appears that Republican house candidates did much better this year in the Hudson Valley and the west end of Long Island. They have flipped at least two seats, including the one held by Sean Maloney—the head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Florida is another example. Two seats were flipped with Ron DeSantis at the top of that state’s Republican ticket.

Both Zelden and DeSantis were credible candidates who told the public what they would to help improve their states. Florida said, “Yes, please, we’d like some more.” New York said, “No, thanks, we’d like more of the same.” I suspect the cost of renting a U-Haul from Rochester to Pensacola will be going up soon.

UPDATE 4—With respect to the flip of NY-17, Chef Boyardee was unavailable for comment.

1 thought on “Further Post Mortem Rumblings


  1. My response, in order:

    1. Trump doesn’t care about winning elections, except his. >> Right, that’s why he’s had over 100 rallies. That’s why he invites candidates to share the stage with him at these rallies and asks them to speak about their campaigns, with no time limit. That’s why he encourages the crowds to support those candidates and why he endorses those candidates. Because he just doesn’t care about winning elections, except his own.

    2. He prefers bad candidates who appease him to good candidates who acknowledge he lost in 2020. >> This sounds like sour grapes to me. Every leader with power prefers candidates who appease them. Mitch McConnell prefers candidates who appease him. Kevin McCarthy prefers candidates who appease him. Chuck Schumer prefers candidates who appease him. Nancy Pelosi prefers candidates who appease her. But if Trump does it, well that just shows what a bad person he is. Yeah, it’s all Trump’s fault. Feel better now, Megan McArdle? And why were those candidates so bad? Almost all the ones Trump supported who might lose today came from way behind, initially by double digits, to make it a highly competitive race. That doesn’t sound like Trump supported bad candidates to me.

    3. His brand helps in primaries and hurts in generals. >> Even if you saw through the first 2 “lessons,” this is the one that most people agree on because they have not thought it out. My response: This is true and has been true for EVERY Republican for decades (if not more), and will continue to be true as long as we have a biased liberal Mainstream Media (MSM). The MSM fully supports every liberal Democrat candidate and demonizes every Republican, in every election. Because of this, the Republican brand itself is the cause. So it’s the entire Republican brand that “helps in primaries and hurts in generals,” not just Trump’s brand.

    4. He’ll keep doing this until forcibly stopped. >> Forcibly stopped? Who talks like this? You might say, “We need to elect better candidates next time.” I think Megan McArdle’s bias is showing through here. I could say more about this “lesson” of forcibly stopping Trump, but I’ll just stop here.

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