April 12, 2017

Press Celebrates 7-Point Democrats’ Loss in KS-04 Special House Election

After Tuesday night’s special election, a Republican will continue to represent the people in Kansas’s Fourth Congressional District. Democrats and their apparatchiks in the press want people to believe that their party achieved a moral victory because their candidate only lost by seven points.

Part of the magic brew in creating the impression that Republicans got a “scare” was achieved by cutting off the reporting before all results were in, as seen at the Politico and the Associated Press, or in failing to report the margin at all in their election story, which is what the New York Times did.

Politico and the Associated Press both prematurely reported smaller-than-actual victory margins for Republican Ron Estes:

(Politico)

GOP holds Kansas special election despite scare from energized Democrats

Kansas state Treasurer Ron Estes held a heavily Republican House district for the GOP in a special election Tuesday, but Democrats lashing back against the Republican Party gave Estes a scare in the first major federal election of Donald Trump’s presidency.

Estes had 52 percent of the vote to Democrat James Thompson’s 46 when the Associated Press called the race for Kansas’ southern 4th District with 88 percent of precincts reporting.

(Associated Press)

Republicans survive election scare, narrowly win Kansas seat

Republicans survived an election scare on Tuesday and won a Kansas House seat in the first congressional election since President Donald Trump’s victory, but the margin was much narrower than expected in a district that had voted overwhelmingly for Trump in November.

Republican state Treasurer Ron Estes, 60, will represent the Kansas 4th congressional district replacing Mike Pompeo, who Trump named as CIA director.

Trump won 60 percent of the district’s vote in November and Pompeo won re-election by 31 points. Estes defeated civil rights lawyer James Thompson by only about five percentage points, suggesting some backlash against Republicans since November.

Here are the full results, which were final for all but one precinct at 11:15 p.m. Eastern Time and possibly earlier, but now representing all precincts:

Kansas4thDistrictResults041117

Estes took all but one county (Sedgwick, whose county seat is Wichita, which Thompson took by fewer than 1,900 votes), and won by 6.8 percent of the vote.

The last time I recall the press being so excited about losing a special-election congressional race in a perceived safe GOP district, Republican Jean Schmidt defeated Paul Hackett in Ohio’s Second District by 3.3 points in 2005. Democrats still haven’t won an election there since the early 1980s.

So how desperate must Democrats and their pals in the press really be if they’re doing cartwheels over losing by twice as much in a district which, having been represented by a Democrat for 18 years until 1995, is nowhere near as red as OH-02?

Though it did link to the race’s results, the coverage story at the New York Times didn’t even deign to tell readers how supposedly close the race was. Readers who don’t click over will likely believe that the race was a nailbiter based on the overwrought language and wishful thinking in the paper’s main story:

Ron Estes, a Republican, Wins a Kansas Race That Unnerved the G.O.P.

Ron Estes, the Republican candidate for an empty House seat in Kansas, survived a surprisingly competitive race in a heavily conservative district on Tuesday, according to The Associated Press. He defeated James Thompson, the Democratic candidate, in the first national test of his party’s electoral strength, in a contest that saw a late infusion of national support from Republicans nervous about the tumultuous political environment during President Trump’s first months in office.

after internal Republican polling last week revealed Mr. Estes’s lead was in only the single digits, the national party scrambled to rescue his campaign — and effectively conceded that even seats in the reddest corners of the United States are not safe at a time when Democrats are so energized against Mr. Trump.

While Mr. Thompson fell short, his unexpected strength represents a warning shot toward Republicans. And it will galvanize Democrats’ candidate-recruitment efforts for next year’s campaign.

My goodness, they’re really excited about losing, aren’t they?

The reporters at the Times apparently can’t understand shoring up a lead vs. rescuing a campaign that’s trailing. Estes wasn’t trailing. Therefore, he wasn’t rescued.

The press also minimized the potentially negative impact of a somewhat unpopular GOP governor. Then again, everyone in the liberal press, and especially at the Times, thought that Governor Sam Brownback would fail in his 2014 gubernatorial reelection bid. Instead, he won by four points — and we should note that Kansas, which the press is now conveniently characterizing as terminally red, twice elected far-left Democrat Kathleen Sebelius as governor last decade.

Finally, the press is completely missing the overwhelmingly obvious message of this election, which is how horribly unpopular 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton — whose name is oh so conveniently not present in any of the three referenced press dispatches — had to be to lose to Republican Donald Trump by a whopping 27 points in this very same congressional district.

Cross-posted, with some revisions, at NewsBusters.org.

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1 Comment

  1. Yep, Trump’s national numbers are down, opposing candidate is a member of the unpopular governor’s cabinet, the turnout is low in special elections and the Dem base is energized. So …. they still lose. If this predicts their future, I would say it is bleak.

    Comment by Jim — April 12, 2017 @ 4:35 pm

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