Battleground states like Arizona, Wisconsin, Georgia have Republicans poised for strong election gains
If Republicans take the House by a healthy margin and win the Senate, we may say last week was when things took a final turn toward the GOP.
Because of Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s fundraising prowess, the Congressional Leadership Fund, the Republican House super PAC, announced it raised $73 million last quarter and began spending that money in competitive districts President Joe Biden won in 2020. The Democratic House super PAC couldn’t match CLF’s efforts putting more Democratic-held congressional seats into play. If CLF continues its aggressive spending, it could result in a larger GOP House victory.
Then there were debates. In Arizona, Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly didn’t put his Republican opponent, Blake Masters, away in their debate and belatedly tried creating distance between himself and President Joe Biden by criticizing the administration’s border policy. This came off as opportunistic as Masters hammered the incumbent for voting in lockstep with the president.
In Wisconsin, Democrat Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes didn’t change his race’s trajectory as incumbent Republican Sen. Ron Johnson continued to effectively pound him Thursday for the Democrat’s extreme left-wing views, especially on crime.
Then there was Georgia, where even The New York Times admitted that Republican Herschel Walker "surpassed low expectations" in his only scheduled debate. Walker generally hewed to his script of attacking Sen. Raphael Warnock for voting in lockstep with Biden while the Democrat incumbent got into difficulty by denying his church evicted residents from an apartment complex it owns, which it did.
Then there’s Biden, who insists on being the centerpiece of his party’s campaign even though he’s got a 43% approval and only 27% think America is going in the right direction. Rather than tending to business in the Oval Office, he threw himself into a cross-country campaign swing with stops in Colorado, California and Oregon.
Biden ended the week with a whopper that will haunt him not only this election, but also in the 2024 presidential election run-up, telling reporters Saturday in Portland "our economy is strong as hell." This was two days after the Labor Department reported inflation rose 8.2% in September with core consumer inflation experiencing its biggest increase in 40 years.
Biden’s boast was also a day before the Wall Street Journal reported its latest survey of economists pegged the probability of recession and job cuts in the next 12 months at 63%. It was 49% in July.
Biden’s claim is at odds with what voters are feeling when they fill up the car, visit the store or listen to the talk at work. This disconnect between the president and ordinary Americans will hurt Democrats when polls open in just over three weeks.