Thursday, August 8, 2019

Media Misses Point On GOP Congressional Retirements

"Because of the transgression of a land, many are its princes;
But by a man of understanding and knowledge
Right will be prolonged."
Proverbs 28:2

Representative sample of recent Congressional race reporting:
Rep. Kenny Marchant on Monday became the latest Texas Republican to announce he will not run for reelection, leaving a suburban district between Dallas and Fort Worth up for grabs. He is the fourth Republican in the state to bow out of the 2020 election; three of them represent very competitive districts.

The nonpartisan Cook Political Report rates Marchant’s district as a “toss-up,” opening up a major opportunity for Democrats. Last week, Rep. Will Hurd, the House’s only black Republican, who represents a border district in Texas, also said he would be stepping down. Hurd was seen as the only Republican who could hold on to his border district, which runs from El Paso to San Antonio — a district that voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016. Rep. Pete Olson, who represents a quickly diversifying Houston suburban district, is also not running for reelection.

House Democrats are reveling in a “Texodus” as they increasingly see an offensive strategy to grow their House majority running through the Lone Star State.
Kinda, sorta...a little...but not really.

The truth is that (with the possible exception of the Hurd district) the GOP is clearing dead weight.  Lukewarm incumbents with indefensible records are TERRIBLE general election candidates.  The GOP is in a stronger position today than it was three weeks ago.

Back in March, we wrote a piece outlining the math.  You really should read the whole thing.  But the TL,DR version is that, in 2018, the GOP held every single open seat while two incumbents lost.

Also, for the record: One of those incumbents who lost was a guy about whom we'd been warning for years.

In a challenging national environment, the last thing you need is additional baggage from an incumbent's indefensible record.

Bottom Line: During a storm, clearing excess weight doesn't guarantee avoiding shipwreck, but it dramatically increases the odds.

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