Primaries a good showing for Trump, but a bad night for progressives

  • 11 May 2018
  • jwoodie
Primaries a good showing for Trump, but a bad night for progressives

Primary elections across the country May 8 kept political junkies up to the wee hours following returns. The bottom line? The President did just fine, using his political capital fairly effectively. But for progressives, the primaries were a night to forget.

First, the Republicans. They got the match-up they wanted in the Ohio governor’s race with Mike DeWine winning the nomination. And they managed to avoid a possible meltdown in West Virginia, with state attorney general Patrick Morrisey winning a three-way race. Controversial candidate Don Blankenship finished third.

In North Carolina, the President got a boost when two Republicans battled it out to see who could be a more ardent presidential supporter. The winner was challenger Mark Harris, who defeated incumbent Rep. Robert Pittenger. A note about that race: Pittenger’s vote for the $1.3 trillion omnibus was a big issue in the primary. That vote helped send him to defeat.
On the other side of the aisle, progressive who pined their hopes on former Rep. Dennis Kucinich winning the Ohio gubernatorial primary were dashed when Richard Cordray romped to a 40-point win.

This continues a string of statewide losses for progressives, who are pushing hard against incumbent Democrats they deem insufficiently anti-Trump. There are many more races to decide before we can put the progressive bloom to rest. And they may yet do well in some races, particularly in states like Oregon, where mainline Democrats are in open war against progressive challengers.

All that’s to be determined. For now, it looks like the president has found his political blessing can, indeed, move votes. That will be particularly important in the November general election, where Democrats will pull out all the stops to win control of the House, and possibly the Senate.