There are 5 states holding mid-term primaries including Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Kentucky, Idaho and Oregon. Here are 3 keys to watching tonight’s election returns. Watch for them as you see the election returns being reported.
1- Pay much more attention to the raw numbers of each party’s primaries than anything else.
The biggest question right now is not so much who will win, it is how much their party turns out. The conventional wisdom is that November is looking to be a potential landslide election for Republicans.
However, the recent Roe v. Wade leak has been red meat for the Democrat party base. Polling shows that the hoped-for outpouring of Dem passion is just not materializing. But, the required time to get a clear measurement of the political temperature has just not elapsed yet.
All that being said, one of the most important things tyou should watch tonight is just how many people are motivated to vote in this race. If you want to see how motivated the base is, compare the numbers from Trumps mid-term election and Obama’s mid-terms too. 2020 won’t be fair reading at all, so don’t use that one for comparison.
People will talk about a particular candidate winning or losing and the result will be heralded or mourned for it’s predictive ability. It all means far less than the pundits make it seem, at least as far as being an oracle on the big election in November. But, if Republican votes are way higher, it spells potential doom for Democrats in November.
On the other hand, similar numbers to past mid-term elections or even heightened Democrat numbers show things tilting the other way. I doubt that will happen. Of course, I could be wrong. But I’m not usually.
2- Pay attention to these two deep blue and deep red races the most.
North Carolina’s 4th District
Biden won this district in 2020, getting over 80% of the vote. The Democrat Representative who has held that seat is retiring. This leaves the seat open for a new representative. Here are the Democrat contenders.
State Senator Foushee She has a far left PAC supporting her.
Sam Bankman-Fried He’s a billionaire who looks like an un-serious mix of Fred Savage in the Wonder Years and Art Garfunkel.
Nida Allam She’s a Muslim woman, who is very far left and is excited for a chance to be part of “The Squad.” She’s also endorsed by a lot of lefties, like Bernie Sanders and environmental groups. On her website she touts “Medicare for all.”
Clay Aiken He is…well… Clay Aiken. In the first paragraph on his website he says he will “deliver on needed progressive policies – from stopping climate change, systemic racism, income inequality and gun violence, to securing voting rights, free health care, and a woman’s right to choose.” He also has a video, which I can’t bring myself to watch. He won’t win, because he looks and acts like he’s made out of plastic and hair gel.
b. Pennsylvania’s 12th District- This is another open Democrat seat in the Pittsburgh area. This is a Democrat stronghold. I’m not sure what a win for either side means for Republicans, but the Democrat primary here is one of the most contentious. Not only is the Democrat winner a potential bell-weather, but the total Republican primary votes are key. Republicans have no incentive to vote in the PA12 race. There is only 1 candidate on the R side, so there will be no sabotage vote from Leftists.
Steve Irwin (krikey!) has the endorsement of the Democrat establishment, as well as the lead in fundraising.
Summer Lee is a leftist with the endorsements of Bernie Sanders, AOC, and radical environmentalist groups. I don’t know how Bernie Sanders has endorsed two candidates in one race (both candidates website’s mention his endorsement), but he’s just that amazing, apparently. Maybe he wants them both to win at the same time. She has the most leftist cred and money by far. If she loses, it’s a big repudiation of those policies.
Pennsylvania Republican Senate
There are 3 main candidates in this close race.
Mehmet Oz TV’s Doctor Oz has the endorsement of Donald Trump. There are a lot of questions as of late, even from Trump supporters on whether or not he’s a conservative, or even a real Republican. A win for him seems to be more about people supporting Trump and his endorsement more than it is about Oz as a candidate.
Kathy Barnette She’s the out-of-nowhere, late-breaking conservative. She is currently in a statistical dead-heat for the lead in the polls. In a last-minute surprise, she is being smeared by appearing at the pro-Trump rally on January 6th that later led into the “January 6th Capitol riots.” Attackers are saying she was with The Proud Boys, which she wasn’t, and they are implicating her with the riots, which is also untrue. Interestingly, it was her attackers on the Left who coined the term “Ultra-MAGA” that you might have heard in the media.
David McCormick He has more of the local connection it seems. He seems to be more run-of-the-mill. CNN likes him more, it seems.
3- Endorsements don’t matter as much as you think, and the outcome often says more about the candidates themselves. But if all someone’s endorsed candidates win, now that means something.
I predicted at the start of the year that Trump would get involved in endorsing candidates this year (Prediction #7). I was right, although I’ve been proud of him not going too overboard with this. There are other endorsements besides Trump. There are candidates that are retiring who tried picking their successors, AOC and other loons have pushed their slate of candidates, and there are countless others.
Much will be made out of Trump’s candidates winning and losing, and the pundits will also mention The Squad’s as well. But it isn’t as easy as all of that. Trump endorsed JD Vance in a race where the endorsement mattered.
Dr. Oz might not have gotten any traction had he not gotten the Trump shout-out. But he is a nominal Republican candidate in his race. I don’t know which is the bigger nod to Trump, if the candidate he endorsed wins, or if Banette, the more MAGA-y of the candidates wins. If anything, it speaks more about Trumps willingness to say things than anything else.
The PA12 race is actually more of an interesting look into star power of endorsements. Will Democrats tack further Left and give the party win to Summer Lee, or will the centrists win out and go with the Crocodile Hunter?
Since the Bernie and The Squad (that is a great band name) spread their blessings around quite liberally in North Carolina, if Nida Allen and Summer Lee both lose their races it’ll be a big slap to their faces.
Tomorrow will bring lots of yipping and yapping from the various pundits. For those of us who enjoy this far more than any sport the time to get your popcorn ready is now. Pop a kernel and take a drink of beer every time you see one of these 3 things mentioned.