In a devastating blow to the president and his party, a Democrat has won yet another victory in a deep-red district that Trump took in 2016 in a congressional race that saw a staggering $11.7 million spent on ads.
With 100% of the precincts counted, Democrat Conor Lamb holds a 677 vote lead (0.3%) and has been declared the apparent winner by NBC News over Republican Rick Saccone in yesterday’s race to represent Pennsylvania’s Congressional District 18, likely flipping the Republican seat – held for nearly two decades – to Democratic control.
“It took a little longer than we thought, but we did it. You did it,” Lamb, a former prosecutor and U.S. Marine, announced in his victory speech after midnight this morning. “We followed what I learned in the Marines — leave no one behind. We went everywhere, we talked to everyone, we invited everyone in.”
Because this is a federal race and not state, there is no mandatory recount, per the Pennsylvania Secretary of State, though Republicans are likely to ask for and receive a second tally.
Even as Republicans continue to cling to hope in the race, the larger picture looks dire for the GOP.
Trump won the 18th Congressional District by a 20-point margin in 2016. In total, from November 2016 to today, Democrats have earned an impressive 20-point swing to the left. This extends a 20-race special election streak in which Democrats have netted an astounding 24-point swing on average n 2018.
The seat was previously filled by former Republican Representative Tim Murphy. While campaigning for Saccone last week, Trump slammed Lamb’s position on abortion, seemingly overlooking the fact that the Democrat is running to fill a seat vacated by a “family values” Republican who resigned after reports that he encouraged a woman, with whom he had an affair, to get an abortion.
Murphy took his seat in the last two elections unopposed.
Thus far, Democrats have unseated Republicans in a vast number of what were thought to be unwinnable races. Aside from flipping New Jersey’s and winning Virginia’s gubernatorial races, Democrats also earned a historic victory electing Doug Jones to the Alabama Senate, the first time that a Democrat has won in that state in a quarter century.
Democrats have also picked up a slew of seats in other races around the country.
Since Trump’s inauguration, Democrats have flipped 42 seats from red to blue. Republicans have only flipped three. In total, Democrats have seen flipped seats in 13 states: Florida, Georgia, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Washington, Wisconsin, Virginia, Missouri, Kentucky, Connecticut, and now Pennsylvania. Even in the most solidly red districts, Democrats are overperforming Trump’s numbers by double digits.
As the Trump administration and its Republican enablers in Congress continue their assault on the will of the American people – from healthcare to tax cuts for the rich to net neutrality to immigration to gun reform – voters across the country are delivering a serious message to the White House, one race at a time.
While Republicans insist upon implementing their disastrously unpopular agenda, the American public is finally putting its foot down– and it’s crippling the party in nearly every race around the nation.