First off, let me say how much fun it was doing an election night broadcast! It was a genuine honor and pleasure broadcasting four full hours alongside Mitch Berg and Ed Morrissey. It's a political geek's dream to be able to pore over election results that come in and then analyze the trends emerging. I even put together Excel spreadsheets to compile results for the US Senate and MN House contests as the races were called.
Anyhow, a few thoughts:
- My predictions of the MN races, US Senate contests and WI gubernatorial race came pretty close. I was wrong in the race for MN Secretary of State and Congressional District 8. I predicted narrow wins for Republicans Dan Severson and Stewart Mills, respectively, but both were defeated by those same narrow margins.
I also said the GOP would have a net gain of 8 seats in the US Senate. However, when it's all said and done, the final margin will be +9 once Bill Cassidy defeats incumbent Mary Landrieu in Lousiana's December runoff election. The only race where I erred was Kansas, where I thought incumbent Republican Pat Roberts would lose to Indy candidate Greg Orman (Roberts won handily). Needless to say, I'm quite ecstatic to have been wrong on that one.
- Despite two huge country-wide Republican waves in the past three election cycles, Minnesota continues to buck the trend by electing a Democrat to the US Senate as well as the governor's office. Heck, even Illinois and Maryland (Maryland!) elected GOP governors. So why does my state continue to be firmly entrenched in the cesspool of liberalism? Too much to get into here, but it's worth a lengthy blog post some day.
-With Gov. Mark Dayton having been declared the winner literally within five minutes of the polls closing last evening, the focus of MN Republicans was squarely on the MN state House. The GOP needed to flip 7 Democrat seats in order to regain a majority in that chamber.
With a plethora of fantastic metro area GOP candidates like Barb Sutter (W. Bloomington, Edina), Jen Wilson (Eagan), Andrea Todd-Harlin (Eagan, Burnsville), Dario Anselmo (Edina), Peter Crema (Brooklyn Park, Coon Rapids), Ryan Rutzick (Plymouth), Heidi Gunderson (Vadnais Heights, Shoreview) and Stacey Stout (Maplewood, Mahtomedi), it seemed a lock the House would flip. Shockingly, not a single of the aforementioned candidates won (none lost by more than 5 points though). As results of their races came in, I felt my heart sink, believing we would not get the House after all. But then as the night rolled on, my radio colleague Mitch Berg and I started to see a trend in the rural, outstate districts. To our delight, Republicans began to flip seats in those areas, resulting in an 11-seat pickup (I believe Mitch was the first media member to call the MN House for the Republicans)!!
With the next legislative session being a budgeting period, expect a lot of finger wagging by the DFL and their media accomplices about the GOP needing to be reasonable in the face of (surprise!) budget deficits that are already being projected.
- I recall a Newsweek magazine cover in the aftermath of the shellacking endured by Republicans in 2012. At the top was the headline of a David Frum piece entitled "GOP: You're Old, You're White, You're History."
Two years later, the GOP became the first party to elect a southern state black man (Tim Scott, SC) to the US Senate.
The Republicans were also responsible for the first woman from West Virginia (Shelley Moore Capito) to be elected to the Senate.
Oh, and the youngest women ever to be elected to political office? Yeah, Republicans.
And for the first time ever, the Republicans elected a black female to Congress.
All in all, not a bad evening for a racist, misogynistic political party.