After down-ballot Democrats blew it in the 2020 election, Republicans are salivating at the prospect of regaining power in just two years.
Democrats thought concerns about health care and COVID-19 would ensure that they’d increase their advantage in the House. They pretty much ignored President Trump’s wild claims about suburbs being overrun and cities burning. “Democrats rolled their eyes at attacks that Republicans made their central theme—socialism and defund the police,” says Dave Wasserman with the non-partisan Cook Political Report. Of course Democrats weren’t running on those issues, but voters don’t take stock on where politicians stand day to day and the incendiary rhetoric broke through.
An attack unanswered is an attack that lands successfully. Democrats did little to blunt the incoming, and they paid the price. Instead of expanding their House majority as they expected, it’s down from 15 to just three seats.