Elections are back in the news again after last night’s Texas primaries. There are lots of experts detailing what they feel are the most important takeaways of the night. You should definitely give them a read, but I thought I’d also toss out my two cents. Or four, in this case.
1: Democrats Put on an Impressive Showing
Last night did nothing to dampen the expectation of a blue wave come November. There hasn’t been as high a turnout (in raw numbers) for the Texas Democratic primary since 1998. There’s a lot of energy of energy there — and a lot is driven by antipathy for President Trump. It strongly suggests that there’s going to be some increased Democratic turnout come November.
2: The Double-Edged Sword of Diversity
The participants and winners in the Democratic primaries were some of the most diverse ever fielded. There were over 50 women running and Texas very well may send two Latina representatives to the hill. While exciting, this may be representative of an increased propensity for liberal activists to prioritize identity politics. For their sake, they shouldn’t conflate disapprobation for Trump with approval for this flavor of progressivism.
3: The Republicans Were Out in Force Too
The Democrats weren’t the only ones who had a good night. Indeed, there were half-a-million more votes tallied in Republican races than there were in Democratic ones. The success of George P. Bush shows that there’s no harm hitching one’s star to the President in deeply conservative areas. Democrats are banking on a wave, but Republicans aren’t giving up the House majority without a fight.
4: As the Title Suggests…
I get the feeling that Doug Jones’ surprise victory is giving people a lot of hope that Texas’ or Mississippi’s seats can be flipped. It’s possible, but so is the sun rising in the west tomorrow. That is to say, don’t bet on it. Republicans do not appear to be dissuaded by Trump’s presidency; they’re just as active as they’ve been for the last few cycles and there are more of them in the south. Considering how inelastic southern voters are, Texas staying red is a solid bet.