Top White House official thinks Senator Cruz could lose his seat

Budget chief Mick Mulvaney told a closed door meeting of GOP donors that it was possible, but not "likely" that Senator Ted Cruz could lose his re-election bid to Democrat Beto O'Rourke. Mulvaney cited Cruz's lack of "likability" as a factor.


"There's a very real possibility we will win a race for Senate in Florida and lose a race in Texas for Senate, O.K.?" Mulvaney said, according to the Times. "I don't think it's likely, but it's a possibility. How likable is a candidate? That still counts."

Cruz is facing Democratic Rep. Beto O'Rourke in his bid for re-election this November, and in Florida, GOP Gov. Rick Scott is mounting a challenge to unseat Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson. An August NBC News/Marist poll in Texas gave Cruz a slight lead, and one in Florida from Quinnipiac University this week showed the race there was deadlocked.

Despite his remark about Cruz, Mulvaney was somewhat bullish about his party's chances overall and referred to the Democratic effort as "a movement of hate."

"They want you to think there's a blue wave when there's not," Mulvaney said.

Mulvaney makes an excellent point about the Democrat's "movement of hate." The GOP won big in 2010 and 2014 not because Obama was hated, but because they had a winning issue; the failure of Obamacare. "Hate" might generate enthusiasm but to get the mass of voters to the polls and nationalize the race, you need an issue. The Democrats only issue is Trump and while he might be unpopular, the majority of Republicans approve of his performance in office.

That matters because mid terms are all about turning out your base. Cruz may not be the most likable senator. There may be some lingering resentment among Texas voters for his presidential run. And die-hard Trump suppporters might remember their man referring to "Lyin' Ted" Cruz during the presidential campaign. All that will be forgotten in November. At bottom, Cruz's opponent is a far left liberal with little or no experience in governance. Voters in Texas do not dislike Cruz enough to elect Beto O'Rourke.

There are still almost 60 days to the election and much can happen between now and then. But even partisan pollsters are backing off their prediction of a Democratic pick-up of more than 35-50 seats, which would constitute a "wave" election. The Dems may still takeover the House, as they need only 24 seats to do so, but a senate takeover is almost a pipe dream.

Talk of a "blue wave" is a mirage created to make it appear a Democratic sweep is inevitable. 

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