November 11, 2018


GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher loses, and the Republicans' 'bad year' may get worse yet (JOE MOZINGO  and JAZMINE ULLOA, NOV 10, 2018, la tIMES)

The defeat to Democrat real estate entrepreneur Harley Rouda represents a landmark shift away from the GOP for suburban America. No county -- no part of a county -- has been at the heart of conservatism since the 1960s like the coast between Dana Point and the Los Angeles County line.

This was John Wayne country.

Even now Republicans have a 10-point voter registration advantage in Rohrabacher's 48th Congressional District -- but President Trump and his supporters in Congress do not. [...]

"The district became much more of an anti-Trump suburb, and he no longer connected to the people there," Quinn said. "He had an opponent who was a former Republican businessman, not some wild-eyed lefty. And for at least two years, people were willing to try something new."

It is a stark change for the region once embodied by the legendary movie cowboy John Wayne -- its international airport's namesake -- who was an ultra-right John Birch Society member and lived on the harbor in Newport Beach.

Republicans have now lost three of the six races Democrats targeted most in the state. They have fallen behind or are holding thin leads in the remaining unresolved races, as suburban voters nationwide rebuked Trump and his allies in the House of Representatives.

Democrats earlier won the seats of GOP Reps. Darrell Issa of Vista, who declined to seek reelection, and Steve Knight of Palmdale, who was ousted by Katie Hill.

On Friday, Democrat Josh Harder overtook Republican Rep. Jeff Denham in the latest tally in a Modesto-area district.

In two other races, GOP Rep. Mimi Walters, who represents the Irvine area, and Republican candidate Young Kim of Fullerton are holding thin leads over their Democratic opponents, who have gained votes with each ballot count since election night.

With the three losses, Republicans will hold, at most, 11 of California's 53 seats in the House. Overall, Democrats are now in a position to make the greatest gains their party has seen in the chamber since Watergate.

"This is more than just a bad year," said Mike Madrid, a GOP political strategist. "This is essentially a realignment in California politics, and the traditional base that has served the Republican Party no longer exists."

Madrid said "a clean sweep" of GOP incumbents was possible. He said he expects the party to see worse results in 2020 because it didn't have "leadership with the strength and the foresight to get us out of this."

The Right is not Republican.

Posted by at November 11, 2018 12:06 PM