by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
John Fund of National Review Online explores the prospects for an electoral blue wave.
Every election people talk about an “October surprise” that upends the conventional wisdom about the outcome. Well, it appears we can see the contours of at least one October surprise. The Democrats have managed to shoot themselves in the foot with their handling of the Brett Kavanaugh nomination and the antics of their most extreme supporters. The “Blue Wave” that liberals have been waiting for may still come, but it’s more likely to splash the knees of most GOP incumbents than to submerge them.
Veteran political handicapper Charlie Cook puts it bluntly in his latest column at the Cook Political Report, in which he asks whether “those who led the out-of-control demonstrations on Capitol Hill against the Kavanaugh nomination have any understanding of how much damage they did to Democrats and the party’s chances of winning a majority in the Senate. His answer: “My guess is they don’t. But Senate Democrats probably do.”
Cook now says the odds of Democrats winning a Senate a majority are “long, no better than 1 in 5.” As of today, “a Republican net gain of a seat or two seems most likely, moving the GOP up to either 52 or 53 seats, though a gain of three seats or no net change [is] entirely possible.”
As for the House, political analysts still make the Democrats the odds-on favorites to retake control there for the first time since 2010. …
… Republicans have a real chance to beat the odds and hold their losses below the 23 seats that would transfer House control.