Tags: GOP | Midterm | Election

GOP Braces for Difficult Midterm Election Battle

Image: GOP Braces for Difficult Midterm Election Battle

By    |   Monday, 24 Apr 2017 08:55 AM

Members of the Republican Party are looking ahead to the midterm elections in 2018 amid concerns that President Donald Trump will drag down the party.

Trump's low approval ratings and few legislative wins may take a toll, Republicans told Politico. 

"It's not the way you'd want to start a new cycle. At some point, they've got to find some kind of rhythm, and there is no rhythm yet," said Randy Evans, a Republican National Committee member from Georgia.

Republican financier Sheldon Adelson, who sent tens of millions to Trump's election campaign and has funded House and Senate Republican campaigns, has not donated to pro-Trump groups since the president's inauguration.

"History says Republicans should get beaten badly in 2018, because the president is not popular, Congress is not popular, and history says, this is what happens in those situations," Peter A. Brown, Quinnipiac University Poll assistant director, told the Washington Examiner. 

White House chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon are looking at the Georgia House seat special election as a prime example of the president's political performance. Trump slammed Democrat Jon Ossoff on Twitter and in robocalls, and still, Ossoff came in at 48 points, within a few points of winning the seat outright.

In that election, Democrats cast 7 percent more ballots than Republicans among voters that do not consistently get out and vote, polls by a Republican said, according to Politico.

"It's a verdict on Trump's first 100 days," said David Jolly, a former Florida Republican congressman. "Ossoff simply has to speak to the president's failure, while Republicans have to wrestle with whether and how to defend Trump's historically low approval ratings."

"If you're a prospective candidate, boy, it's tough," Jolly said.

In the House of Representatives, Republicans will have to defend dozens of seats in 2018 to keep their 23-seat majority, the Examiner reported.

Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla.,blamed the party, not Trump, for the lack of success, saying, "The majority is not safe. We need to be more constructive legislatively, and there are going to be political implications if we don't."

Scott Jennings, who served in George W. Bush's White House, said Republicans must take advantage of their majorities to get some legislation done.

"There's time — the midterm elections aren't until November 2018 — but at some point we have to finish the things we ran on," Jennings said.

Priebus and other Republicans tamped down the idea that the GOP is worried.

"He is fulfilling his promises and doing it at breakneck speed," Priebus said Sunday, according to Politico.

Republican fundraising is going well, with the Republican National Committee raising a record amount of $41.5 million during the first quarter.

"This is part of the growing pains of the new administration… if you're going to fumble the football, it's good to do it in the first three minutes," Ken Abramowitz, a major Republican donor said, according to Politico.

Enthusiasm from Democrats appears to be growing. "The recipe for big Democratic gains in 2018 is an energized Democratic base and a depressed or apathetic Republican base," according to Nathan Gonzales, Inside Elections editor and publisher.

"It doesn't guarantee they will get crushed in 2018, but it's not a good sign," Gonzales told the Examiner.

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Members of the Republican Party are looking ahead to the midterm elections in 2018 amid concerns that President Donald Trump will drag down the party.
GOP, Midterm, Election
Monday, 24 Apr 2017 08:55 AM
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