It’s a pretty safe bet that a lot of people feel Democrats didn’t do enough to help their candidate, James Thompson, in the Kansas special House election last week. He came in behind the Republican winner, Ron Estes, by a mere 6 points. Republican Mike Pompeo took the seat back in November by over 30 point before stepping down to head the CIA.
The latest to express that opinion is Sen. Bernie Sanders:
“It is true that the Democratic Party should have put more resources into that election,” Sanders told host Jake Tapper on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “But it is also true that he ran 20 points better than the Democratic candidate for president did in Kansas.”
Not to gratuitously defend the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, but support takes money, and decisions have to be made. Could Thompson have won in this most red of red states? Who knows, but someone with a hand on the purse strings thought not and thought that perhaps money and resources could be better spent elsewhere. There are a couple of key special elections around the corner and 2018 is not that far off.
In other words, the DCCC has a big job ahead of it.
“So many of our people are giving up on the political process. It is very frightening. In the last presidential election, when Trump won, we had the lowest voter turnout over — in 20 years. And in the previous two years before that, in the midterm election, we had the lowest voter turnout in 70 years,” Sanders continued. “We’re going to be fighting to see that the Democratic Party becomes a 50-state party. You can’t just be a West Coast party and an East Coast party.”
Sanders cited special elections coming up n the Georgia’s 6th District on Tuesday, as well as an upcoming special election in Montana late next month.
So, what you’re seeing in Kansas, what you’re seeing in Georgia, I believe you’re going to see it in Montana, I believe you’re going to see it all over this country, is the many so-called red states, working people are going to wake up and say, wait a second,” Sanders said in part. “Republicans want to cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and education, and they want to give hundreds of billions of dollars in tax breaks to the top 1 percent. No, that’s not what we elected Trump to do.
Sometimes the right decisions are made about where resources are committed, and sometimes the wrong decisions. But decisions have to be made.
I never thought a win in Kansas was possible, and was it really worth it to go “all in” to lose by three points instead of six? Sen. Sanders, with muted criticism and his eyes on the future, seems to get that.