Like Steve at No More Mister Nice Blog, I’m not optimistic about Democrat Jon Ossoff’s chances in the GA-6 special House election today, though for a different reason. As I’ve noted before, to win these districts, either Democrats need to have much higher turnout than Republicans, or else they need to convince a significant number of Republicans to vote for the Democrat.
Unfortunately, GA-6 is one of the wealthiest and best-educated districts in the country–and that means turnout will be high. I’m guessing Ossoff needs to get at least ninety percent of the total in 2016, during a special election. I suppose this is my equivalent of a hot take, but I think these districts are really hard to flip, as there will be enough loyalist Republicans who will turn up to vote, meaning Democrats will have to get nearly as many votes as they do in on-year elections.
And while I’m all for convincing the occasional Trump voter, I think the real electoral gold mine is bringing Democratic voters who sat 2016 out back to the voting booth. But in GA-6, there just won’t be many of these voters.
What Democrats need to do is target Republican districts with low turnout. In these districts, high Democratic turnout could defeat Republicans.
I hope I’m wrong about Ossoff though.
Aside: There has been speculation that negative ads highlighting Kathy Griffin’s beheading video along with the Congressional baseball practice shooting is bringing wayward Republicans back to the fold. While I’m skeptical about that, Democrats needed to hit Handel much harder personally, and link her voting suppression–and other actions–to healthcare (‘if she lies about X, she’s lying about Y’.) The high road gets you nowhere.