Politico wrote that Senate GOP leaders are “rattled” by 2018 recruitment efforts, but numerous winning GOP senators started much later in 2014…
Ever desperate for a compelling storyline, political reporters have increasingly started focusing on Senate GOP recruitment efforts for the 2018 midterms. Numerous Democrats are up for re-election in states won by Trump last year, and the GOP is hoping to expand its 52-seat majority in the upper chamber.
As the story goes, however, the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) is butting heads with the Trump White House, according to Politico:
Republican officials say they expected some turbulence as they learned to coexist with a president who is, at heart, a political newcomer who is relatively unfamiliar with congressional politics. But even so, the wild unpredictability of the Trump White House has led to considerable consternation and rattled a GOP firmament that views next year’s Senate election landscape as a golden opportunity to expand the majority.
NRSC communications director Katie Martin pushed back on this narrative, pointing out that, using past cycles as a guide, Republicans have little to worry about.
“Chairman [Cory] Gardner, who didn’t get into his Senate race until March of 2014, knows firsthand that candidates do not need to announce early in a cycle to win,” Martin said.
In addition to Gardner, who won a Senate race in Colorado in 2014, it’s widely recognized that Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) did not appear on the national radar until she released her “Squeal” ad in March 2014, as well.
Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) did not become the Republican nominee in his Senate race until July, defeating Democrat Michelle Nunn, who had announced her candidacy a full year earlier in July 2013.
Early entries do not always translate to political success, and any narrative that argues otherwise ignores historical data.
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