When Mitt Romney lost in 2012—yes, he was a viable and tolerable contender for me, since he had announced “self-deport!” to illegal aliens and promised to repeal Obamacare—I cried. I hugged my Dad, I was so distraught. I was convinced that Obama’s litany of failures and scandals would have spelled his doom. Unfortunately, working and middle-income Americans were turned off to what they perceived as a tuned-out elitist.
I felt a similar sorrow after the Virginia and New Jersey elections results, especially Virginia. I really thought Gillespie would pull it off. Unlike some Establishment types, he seemed to have learned his lesson, embraced the core Trump issues—immigration, public safety, American pride. He had done well in 2014, nearly clinching the US Senate race against Mark Warner in an epic GOP wave year.
What happened this time? Unlike Democratic holdovers and progressive pundits, I want to learn from the mistakes and the setbacks of failing elections, outreach, messaging, and attention to core issues to do better. No one can expect to Make America Great Again if we don’t understand why the voters do not turn out to make that dream a reality.
Ann Coulter had her healthy, witty spin on this Deep Water Democratic tide: The leftists win the war of ideas through demographic change: immigrants and re-enfranchised felons. More takers, fewer makers, and voila! You have A Democratic tyranny in the once-stable constitutional Republic. That pretty much describes what is happening in Virginia, and what has been happening by and large in New Jersey for a long time.
Let me dispense with my own ruminations on New Jersey first. Governor Chris Christie outlined what was probably going to happen. For the last eight years, Trenton had been saying “No! No! No!” to every major special interest in the state. People want more services; they want more goodies from the government. The takers had indeed taken over in key urban regions, and they are swinging elections like never before. Kim Guadagno was dragged down by Christie’s bad numbers, too.
For me, the saddest, strangest part about New Jersey is that Hillary Clinton with man parts won this seat: Phil Murphy, the big money financier from Goldman Sachs who promised to pamper the public sector unions. He also ran on a platform of turning New Jersey into a sanctuary state for illegal aliens, even after sensational illegal alien crimes had occurred one week prior. Defiance of federal law is destructive social justice warrior virtue-signaling at its worst. And yet, New Jersey voters gave up security for freebies. Their property taxes will skyrocket, and then they will watch what happens when Trenton powerbrokers run out of other people’s money (hint, hint: Detroit 2013).
OK, Guadagno was a long-shot, I know, but still: when your next chief executive says he will protect illegal from deportation, the same illegals who murder and rape your fellow citizens, one would think that voters would decide to go with “the other candidate.” Didn’t happen.
Now, on to Virginia.
I connected with Virginia activist and Central Committee member Fredy Burgos. He announced to me what other conservatives had shared: they were more anti-Northam than pro-Gillespie. Why? Gillespie was too much of the Swamp, the Establishment which has enraged Republican voters for decades. To make matters worse, Gillespie had turned up the Trumped-up rhetoric, but wanted to do it without Trump. One source share with me that a false poll had circulated weeks before the June primary showing pro-Trump Corey Stewart losing by 19 points to Gillespie. On primary day, Gillespie was only 1% ahead. WHAT?!
Sure, Gillespie started talking MAGA, but he didn’t wear it like a fine, fitting suit. Trump tweeted for him. Bannon stumped for him, but Gillespie campaigned with … George W. Bush. There’s the nail in the coffin. I reached out to two other sources on this Virginia fallout for their take. Robin Hvidston of We the People Rising and California Director for the Remembrance Project commented: “Both New Jersey and Virginia are blue states and were expected to elect Democrat candidates … one reason Ed Gillespie lost was because he distanced himself from President Donald Trump and his push to Make America Great Again.”
Willies Lee, the newly elected President of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, himself a native-born Virginian who witnessed the stark pro-Democratic demographic reshuffling in the Alexandria region, commented: “Our loss in Virginia demonstrates the need for our conservative Republican Assembly to be involved in those states, especially in the down-ticket races. Voters need the stark contrast of a conservative versus their far-left progressive candidates.” I never thought of Gillespie as a RINO, but voters sure did (just like Romney). Their opinions matter, not mine, and the rural ruby red sections of the state did not turn out in larger numbers for Gillespie. In many cases they skipped the top of the ticket, but voted for the rest of the slate!
Final thoughts: These losses are not a repudiation of Trump’s agenda, but a reminder that if Republicans don’t deliver, they will get scuttled. Democrats are galvanized to stop Trump, and they are doubling down since their once-reliable institutions—national sports, the mainstream media, and academia—are failing.
Republican voters—especially millions of newly registered Republicans in the Rust Belt—are not just voting for the “R”. They want the real, red-meat reforms that leave more money in their pockets, place their interests first, and drain the greedy, grimy Swamp which has drained their life and individual sovereignty. Republican voters are not going to hold their noses for so-so RINOs, and Independents who want a better America will vote for “the other guy” just to spite our guys when they don’t deliver, even males with active gender dysphoria who promise to fix the traffic problems in your district.
The Virginia Blue wave is a potential precursor for Democratic gains next year. Republicans need to get with Trump’s agenda or lose big time in 2018.