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Consensus Grows: Democrats Wasting Money on Special Elections

Democrats spent over $8 million on Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s special election, and more special elections are coming. Are Dems wasting money that’s better spent rebuilding the party?

Nancy Pelosi Tim Ryan

A consensus is emerging among Democrats in the wake of Jon Ossoff’s failure to clear 50 percent in Georgia’s special primary election on Tuesday: the national party is wasting money on special elections.

NBC News‘ Kasie Hunt reported on Wednesday morning about “behind-the-scenes grumbling” from Democrats about the $8 million-plus spent on Ossoff in the last few months:

A Politico report from Gabriel Debenedetti made a similar point:

For all the anger, energy, and money swirling at the grassroots level, Democrats didn’t manage to pick off the first two Republican-held congressional seats they contended for in the Trump era, and the prospects aren’t markedly better in the next few House races coming up: the Montana race at the end of May, and the South Carolina contest on June 20.

Hunt noted that some Democrats are asking: are those millions of dollars better spent rebuilding the party after a disastrous 2016 cycle?

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), the House Democrats’ campaign arm, proudly noted its “record-breaking fundraising” in the first quarter of 2017 – though they were outraised by House Republicans, $36 million to $31 million.

If that $31 million is sunk into losing campaigns for House Democrats, though, what’s the point of “record-breaking fundraising”? Some Democrats appear to be wondering just that after Tuesday’s special election.