Democrats still aren’t tired of winning.
On Tuesday, Democrats flipped yet another seat from red to blue—the fifth Democratic pickup this cycle. (Republicans have yet to flip a seat in a contested election.)
This win further extends the trend of Democratic victories and electoral over-performances this cycle. Tonight’s victory in New Hampshire not only brings the total number of Democratic pickups to five, but it brings the number of races in which Democrats have outperformed the party’s 2016 presidential results in these same legislative and congressional districts to 25 (out of 35 held since last November, with special elections 36 and 37, also held on September 12, results to come.).
Democrat Charlie St. Clair, an avid motorcyclist and small business owner, won today’s New Hampshire House special election 56-44 percent, becoming the first Democrat to win this district since 2012. He’ll replace Robert Fisher, a Republican who resigned in May after he lied under oath about his involvement with the deeply misogynistic Reddit forum known as “The Red Pill,” which he founded and posted terrible things on frequently. Trump won this district 56-39 percent last fall, making tonight’s win a 28-point swing towards the Democrat.
This dramatic shift tracks with the massive improvement in Democratic performance in the majority of special elections at both the congressional and state legislative level since Trump’s election last November. The greatest of these swings—48 percent!—was in Oklahoma in May.
This pickup follows two dramatic flips in the Oklahoma House and Senate in July. In May, Democrats flipped another state House seat in New Hampshire and a state Assembly seat in New York. In all four of these pickups, the Democrat not only won but also over-performed the presidential numbers numbers last fall by double digits, by margins that range from 11 percent to 39 percent. And while everyone loves a sexy pickup, Democrats have also defended key seats—many of them very difficult holds—in the Iowa, Virginia, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island, and South Carolina legislatures.
So not only are Democrats winning by flipping seats from Republican to Democratic hands, but even when Republicans manage to hold on to seats in these special elections, they’re scrambling to cling to historically red seats and eking out tiny wins in previously uncompetitive districts.
Republicans can’t afford to continue struggling like this if they hope to hold on to majorities in state legislatures and the U.S. House this cycle.