Keep an eye on state government races

We tend to look at politics from the standpoint of federal politics.  Who controls the two houses of Congress?  Which party controls the White House?  Who will pick future federal judges and justices?  In the 2018 midterm elections, not too many people will be watching what happens in state government races, but these races largely determine the future of the politics parties in the next decade.

Gubernatorial races receive the most attention.  Governors make good Senate candidates and also are the logical choices for presidential candidates once the incumbent president has left office.  The latest polling data suggest that Republicans will still have a majority of governors after the midterm but that Democrats will pick up a net of eight governorships. 

This does not mean a lot.  The Republican governors of Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maryland, for example, are likely to remain in office, but these governors will simply continue being good governors without the real ability to achieve any great reforms in their states or provide support for any federal elections in 2020. 

Losing governorships in the Rust Belt and Florida could cause problems, particularly if these losses are accompanied by state legislative losses allowing Democrats to undo many of the union, voting, and educational reforms enacted by Republican-controlled state governments in the last ten years.

Republicans going into the midterms control 67 state legislative chambers (counting the nominal non-partisan Nebraska unicameral legislature as Republican, which is the reality), and Democrats control 32.  In these races, perhaps as in no other state races, the "Blue Wave" promised by leftist Democrats will be tested.  Because so few people pay attention to the actual candidates in these races, the president's party can lose a lot of seats if voters want to send a message to the party running Washington.

While losing many state legislative chambers in 2018 is not a disaster, if Republicans have the same sort of losses in state legislative races in 2020, then state legislative districts and congressional districts after the 2020 Census will be drawn much more to suit Democrats than after the 2000 or the 2010 elections.   

Republicans may hold the House of Representatives this year because of Republican state legislative gerrymandering in dozens of states, but that advantage will vanish, for at least a decade, if Republicans become again the minority party in state legislatures.  Moreover, because this gerrymandering affects not only congressional district lines, but state legislative district lines, Democrats will get an edge in holding state legislative gains after the 2030 Census.

Losing control of state legislatures will also limit the power of Republicans in state government to enact changes in programs, but the timidity exhibited by Republicans over the last two decades in this area suggests that not too much would be lost.  The dreary spectacle of Republican state governments promising to make public education "better" rather than trying to make private education and homeschooling the norm betrays cravenness typical of lifelong politicians of any stripe.

The real hidden story after the 2018 midterms will show up in the secondary statewide offices each party wins or loses: lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor, and other miscellaneous offices that vary from state to state. 

As we learned from the odious "Secretary of State Project," masterminded by the equally odious George Soros to make elections "fair," these races can have an impact on election procedures, public lawsuits, and execution of environmental laws and regulations enacted at both the state and federal levels.  Perhaps even more importantly, these secondary statewide offices will largely provide the congressional and even the gubernatorial and Senate candidates of the future.

State government elections will not get much attention in a midterm in which control of both houses of Congress is considered up for grabs, but these under-the-radar races will tell a lot about how the parties and their leaders impose their will in government over the next ten years.

We tend to look at politics from the standpoint of federal politics.  Who controls the two houses of Congress?  Which party controls the White House?  Who will pick future federal judges and justices?  In the 2018 midterm elections, not too many people will be watching what happens in state government races, but these races largely determine the future of the politics parties in the next decade.

Gubernatorial races receive the most attention.  Governors make good Senate candidates and also are the logical choices for presidential candidates once the incumbent president has left office.  The latest polling data suggest that Republicans will still have a majority of governors after the midterm but that Democrats will pick up a net of eight governorships. 

This does not mean a lot.  The Republican governors of Massachusetts, Vermont, and Maryland, for example, are likely to remain in office, but these governors will simply continue being good governors without the real ability to achieve any great reforms in their states or provide support for any federal elections in 2020. 

Losing governorships in the Rust Belt and Florida could cause problems, particularly if these losses are accompanied by state legislative losses allowing Democrats to undo many of the union, voting, and educational reforms enacted by Republican-controlled state governments in the last ten years.

Republicans going into the midterms control 67 state legislative chambers (counting the nominal non-partisan Nebraska unicameral legislature as Republican, which is the reality), and Democrats control 32.  In these races, perhaps as in no other state races, the "Blue Wave" promised by leftist Democrats will be tested.  Because so few people pay attention to the actual candidates in these races, the president's party can lose a lot of seats if voters want to send a message to the party running Washington.

While losing many state legislative chambers in 2018 is not a disaster, if Republicans have the same sort of losses in state legislative races in 2020, then state legislative districts and congressional districts after the 2020 Census will be drawn much more to suit Democrats than after the 2000 or the 2010 elections.   

Republicans may hold the House of Representatives this year because of Republican state legislative gerrymandering in dozens of states, but that advantage will vanish, for at least a decade, if Republicans become again the minority party in state legislatures.  Moreover, because this gerrymandering affects not only congressional district lines, but state legislative district lines, Democrats will get an edge in holding state legislative gains after the 2030 Census.

Losing control of state legislatures will also limit the power of Republicans in state government to enact changes in programs, but the timidity exhibited by Republicans over the last two decades in this area suggests that not too much would be lost.  The dreary spectacle of Republican state governments promising to make public education "better" rather than trying to make private education and homeschooling the norm betrays cravenness typical of lifelong politicians of any stripe.

The real hidden story after the 2018 midterms will show up in the secondary statewide offices each party wins or loses: lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor, and other miscellaneous offices that vary from state to state. 

As we learned from the odious "Secretary of State Project," masterminded by the equally odious George Soros to make elections "fair," these races can have an impact on election procedures, public lawsuits, and execution of environmental laws and regulations enacted at both the state and federal levels.  Perhaps even more importantly, these secondary statewide offices will largely provide the congressional and even the gubernatorial and Senate candidates of the future.

State government elections will not get much attention in a midterm in which control of both houses of Congress is considered up for grabs, but these under-the-radar races will tell a lot about how the parties and their leaders impose their will in government over the next ten years.