The Political Report – November 6, 2022

Dan Balz: “For a Democratic Party on the defensive as Election Day nears, there is perhaps no more important group of voters than Black Americans. Black women and Black men have consistently supported Democratic candidates in higher percentages than any other group of voters in the country. They are responsible for turning Georgia blue two years ago, helping elect President Biden and two Democratic senators, one of whom, Raphael G. Warnock, is in a neck-and-neck race for reelection this fall.”

“Given that the political fundamentals of this midterm election favor Republicans, Black voters are more crucial than ever for the Democrats. One overriding question is whether they will turn out in numbers big enough to offset those GOP advantages. Regardless, many Black voters fear a future in which overt racism becomes more apparent. They have concerns about whether Biden, who is well liked, has the strength to unify the country around a more positive vision. And there are questions about whether the Democratic Party speaks to Black voters as effectively as needed.”

Stan Greenberg: “The most effective issue for Republicans in this midterm is a result of Democratic elites failing to understand what their diverse base of working-class voters wants.”

Tim Alberta: “The left has alienated America’s fastest-growing group of voters just when they were supposed to give the party a foolproof majority.”

“We’re getting crushed on narrative. We’re going to have to do better in terms of getting on the offense and stop being on the damn defense.” — Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), quoted by the New York Post.

NBC News: “Ticket-splitters are playing a starring role in 2022 polls, but a key unanswered question is whether most of them will persist in bifurcating their ballots or end up going all-in with one party… Recent history suggests ticket-splitters are dwindling in an era of intensifying tribalism.”

 “Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV) is a Trump-backed Christian conservative who is anti-abortion, pro-coal and thinks marriage should be ‘between a man and a woman.’ Barry Wendell (D), his opponent in next week’s election, is an openly gay Jewish man who supports abortion rights and replacing fossil fuels with clean energy,” the AP reports.

“You’d think the candidates — who couldn’t be more different — would have a lot to talk about. But Mooney hasn’t shown much interest in debating or even engaging with Wendell. The sitting congressman is more interested in talking about the last Democrat holding statewide office in West Virginia, Sen. Joe Manchin.”

“For decades, Democrats and Republicans trying to attract Latino voters have been guided by widespread assumptions that the generally Democratic Latino electorate is conservative on the issue of abortion,” the Washington Post reports.

“But recent polls have debunked those long-held beliefs, finding most Latinos say abortion should be legal, often on par with White voters though trailing Black voters in support.”

“The battle for control of the House has been spreading into bluer and bluer turf as Election Day creeps nearer, with more than 60 percent of ad spending the past two months flowing into districts President Joe Biden won by 5 or more points just two years ago,” Politico reports.

“The spending landscape illustrates the challenging pattern for Democrats and their slim majority: Many of their most vulnerable seats have already slid off the edge of the map, and Republicans are pushing them back even further, forcing an expensive defense of many seats that they and Biden both carried in the last election.”

But a potential caveat: “There is one silver lining for Democrats: Despite earlier concerns about a lack of resources, they are spending at least $107 million on TV and radio ads in House races in the final week before Election Day… That’s compared to $78 million for Republicans. Both parties could still add or cut bookings in the final days.”

Marc Thiessen: “It’s possible that Tuesday will see a red wave so powerful that it will sweep all these Republicans into office. But if Republicans fall short, it will be because Trump chose weak candidates who needed massive outside support — and then failed to support them. If the GOP does take back the Senate, it will be because McConnell-aligned PACs saved Trump’s nominees — something they should remember when they take their oaths on Jan. 3.”

Donald Trump’s inner circle “is discussing announcing the launch of a 2024 presidential campaign on Nov. 14 — with the official announcement possibly followed by a multi-day series of political events,” Axios reports.

“Trump and his top advisers have been signaling for weeks that a 2024 announcement is imminent. But those discussions have reached the point that allies are blocking off days in their calendars for the week after the midterms — and preparing to travel.”

CNN: “Top aides to former President Donald Trump have been eyeing the third week of November as an ideal launch point for his 2024 presidential campaign.”

New York Times: “While both parties have their billionaires, Republicans have many more. Of the 25 top donors this cycle, 18 are Republican, according to Open Secrets, and they have outspent Democrats by $200 million. Billionaires make up 20 percent of total Republican donations compared with 14.5 percent of Democratic donations.

Nate Cohn: “In one sense, the new Republican strength was foreseeable. The president’s party almost always gets pummeled in midterm elections, especially when his approval rating is as low as President Biden’s, which is hovering just over 40 percent. In the era of modern polling dating back nearly a century, no precedent exists for the president’s party to hold its own in the House when his approval rating is well beneath 50 percent.”

“But for Democrats, the usual midterm losses for the party in the White House — or even a better than usual outcome — may still be something of a disappointment. Democrats seemed to be in a fairly strong position as recently as a few weeks ago. They gained support over the summer after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and amid rising concerns about the state of American democracy and gun violence. Some news also helped the party politically: falling gas prices and Biden’s surprising legislative successes.”

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

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