This week: The Briefing, Vol. X, Issue 11
- Alarm bells: Hispanic voters suddenly favor Republican candidates
- Andrew Cuomo is attempting a comeback
- Shannon enters Oklahoma Senate race
Los Republicanos: For years and years, establishment Republicans talked about how their party is doomed if they don’t succeed in bringing Hispanic voters over to their side. They held out reasonable hopes, based on Hispanics’ cultural conservatism. They hatched many harebrained schemes to make this Hispanic-Republican alliance happen, too — mostly involving some sort of immigration amnesty.
They forgot that Hispanic voters, for the most part, are citizens and not immigrants. They don’t care about immigration, unless illegal immigrants are destroying their communities along the border.
Who ever thought that Hispanic voters would actually cross over, but that it would happen not in the age of George W. Bush’s “compassionate conservatism,” but through the tough-on-crime and pro-immigration-enforcement ideology of Donald Trump?
It’s almost as if “these people” have their own ideas and aren’t controlled by the Democratic Party. Imagine that.
Something very funny has happened in the polls. Hispanic support for Republican congressional candidates was already shockingly high in the Wall Street Journal poll in November, when the two parties were tied. But it has since jumped out to a nine-point Republican margin, according to the latest iteration of that poll. This is not something the mainstream media seems eager to trumpet at this point, given the fact that it falsifies almost everything about their wokeness narrative. But Republicans are on the verge of actually winning the Hispanic vote. This is a completely shocking development that could revolutionize American politics.
It must be setting off alarm bells at the DNC. Even worse for Democrats, their margins with black voters slipped from 56 points in November to 35 points in the new survey. This is a massive shift, indicative of the Biden administration’s rapid loss of public support.
This brings to mind the Democrats’ Achilles heel. They completely depend upon gaining 90% support or more from Black voters, and 65% or more support from hispanics, with appropriate adjustments for. voting jurisdictions. If they fail to achieve those margins — for example, if they win only 75 or 80 percent of black votes, they are doomed to permanent minority status in most states and cities.
Issues: Biden is getting clobbered on the issues. For example, 63% majority said they disapproved of Biden on inflation, which is arguably the biggest issue of the 2022 election. They gave Republicans he’s 17-point advantage on the issue over Democrats. Overall, Republicans enjoy a five-point advantage on the generic congressional ballot, historically a sign that they are headed to a large victory.
Ukraine War: One of the biggest political questions of the day is whether the Russo-Ukrainian War has extended some kind of lifeline to Biden’s presidency. It is a valid question, as one poll had suggested Biden had gained in popularity.
It is therefore important to note that voters remain just as unhappy with Biden as they were before the war started, at least according to the Wall Street Journal poll.
Biden has not found himself a free pass. He has not been allowed to draft off the popularity of Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky.
It is also worth pointing out that a slim plurality of voters (47 to 46 percent) do indeed approve of Biden’s handling of Ukraine, and that 50% say they approve of how he is dealt with Russia. This means that Biden’s severe negative poll numbers — 57 percent disapprove overall, with an impressive 47% disapproving “strongly” — would probably be even worse if they were not being propped up by Ukraine right now. Indeed, he may also be enjoying a bounce from his State of the Union address, yet his numbers are that bad.
Why is this? Probably because Biden failed to do several things he could have done in order to deter the Russian invasion of Ukraine. One could credit him for luring Vladimir Putin into a war he couldn’t win, but that is no consolation at all for the thousands of people who will die or lose loved ones in this conflict before it is over. An ounce of prevention would have gone a long way, and Biden failed to prevent when he refused to provide the arms Ukraine needed until the very last minute, in January. He hesitated, according to news reports, out of a misguided desire to avoid upsetting the Russians, who were already hell-bent on starting an aggressive war and were never going to be turned back by weakness.
Indeed, Biden’s weakness is more likely the reason this war ever started.
For someone who spent so many years cheering and sitting on the foreign relations committee, Biden’s grasp of foreign affairs seems quite rudimentary. This is also reflected in his desperation to reinstate an Iran deal, no matter how awful its terms and despite Russia’s involvement in the process.
His incompetence in this area underscores his inability to turn such a rally-round-the-flag moment into some amount of personal popularity, signify that this is not a good year to be running for office as a Democrat.
Georgia: President Trump’s endorsement may be valuable, but it isn’t ironclad. Governor Brian Kemp, R, leads by double digits and polls at 50% according to Fox News. That’s not only well ahead of the Trump-endorsed former Sen. David Perdue, but it borders on avoiding a runoff.
New York: Despite not being an official candidate for anything, disgraced former governor Andrew Cuomo is actively running a campaign ad that claims he was framed for his sexual harassment of multiple accusers. The situation is bad enough that state courts have ruled that he is acting like a candidate for office at this point.
It is not clear whether Cuomo is actually planning to run for governor or any other office, but he is clearly trying to rehabilitate his image. Democratic voters will have to decide whether they can be bought so cheaply. In a hypothetical primary matchup, Cuomo trails his replacement, Gov. Kathy Hochul, by only four points.
Meanwhile, on the Republican side, Rep. Lee Zeldin is a double digit favorite for the Republican nomination, leading Andrew Giuliani by 10-point margin, 27 to 17 percent. Zeldin would have a hard time against Hochul, but his chances against Cuomo would be much better, given that a large majority of New Yorkers believe Cuomo should never run for any office again. It is anyone’s guess whether Cuomo will file as a candidate, but the tougher question may be whether Democratic voters will be willing to forgive him for his many sins.
Ohio: Here’s one primary race that just never took off. Gov. Mike DeWine is on pace to win renomination easily over two opponents, one of whom is former Congressman Jim Renacci. A new Fox News poll shows DeWine at 50 percent, with Renacci in third place at 18 percent. Election day is May 3.
Missouri: various conservatives are at odds with each other, endorsing different candidates. Sen. Ted Cruz has backed Attorney General Eric Schmitt. Missouri’s other senator, Josh Hawley, has endorsed Rep. Vicki Hartzler. The divisions among conservatives threaten to help disgraced former Gov. Eric Greitens win the nomination.
Gov. Mike Parson has chosen to remain neutral. The primary is Aug. 2.
Oklahoma: T.W. Shannon, a prominent black conservative and former speaker of the Oklahoma house, is officially running for Senate to replace the suddenly resigning Sen. James Inhofe. Already in the race are Inhofe’s chief of staff Luke Holland and Congressman Markwayne Mullin, in addition to a handful of other candidates. The Republican primary is June 28.