With Republican Party victories in Georgia and South Carolina, the special elections since Donald Trump was elected have the GOP undefeated in four outings, and it is something four-time presidential adviser David Gergen says should be worrisome to Democrats because, even though all politics is local, as the saying goes, national politics, by extension, is a lot of locals. What that means exactly is that, as Gergen points out, Trump could win re-election in 2020.
David Gergen, who advised former Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton, appeared on CNN’s Erin Burnett Outfront and said Wednesday that Democrats who are contemplating retaking the White House in 2020 should take heed of the special elections; all of which have ended in losses for Democratic candidates. Although he qualified his comments by admitting that off-year elections might not be the best indicators of regularly scheduled elections, Gergen said that the Republican victories should be a “wake-up call” for those wanting to oust Donald Trump in 2020.
“What’s really important is that Donald Trump has seized the narrative back, that he’s doing better with the voters than Democrats think he is,” he said.
“It should be a wake-up call for Democrats. It is possible that he could actually get re-elected if Democrats aren’t careful.”
Gergen, who has had no problem criticizing the acts and policies of President Donald Trump during his relatively brief stint in the White House (to which the adviser-to-presidents readily admitted), said that the media should acknowledge that, at least in this area, “this is one occasion when we ought to say he deserves to take a victory lap.”
Gergen noted that any sitting president would do so, especially presidents that are taking hits to their policies and administration like Trump has, and the election victories should “impress the voters with the fact that he withstood assaults on four different states and Republicans won all four.”
The two most recent special elections, both contests for congressional seats in the House of Representatives, were held in South Carolina and Georgia, the latter marking, as noted by CNBC, the most expensive House race in history. Karen Handel, who won over Democratic opponent Jon Ossoff, will also have the distinction of being the first woman ever elected to Congress from the state of Georgia.
The other two special elections conducted this year were held in Montana and Kansas. (Technically, there was a fifth special election in California, which saw Democrats Jimmy Gomez and Robert Lee Ahn vying for Californias’s 34th congressional district seat. As the Los Angeles Times reported earlier this month, Gomez won. Gergen’s analyses did not include the California race because there was only nominal Republican opposition in the heavily Democratic district and the victor was chosen by run-off.
David Gergen’s remarks about re-election are timely as President Trump is scheduled to hold his first re-election fundraiser next week on June 28.
[Featured Image by Charles Rex Arbogast/AP Images]