If you turn on cable news today, you’ll probably hear about how the Democrats lost in Montana last night, and how the resistance is just smoke and mirrors since it hasn’t translated into electoral gains.
Well, the truth is the exact opposite. What we all just witnessed last night was the Republican Party barely holding onto one of their safest seats. In a typical year, Montana is never even close.
It’s been more than 20 years since a Democrat won that seat and more than a decade since a Democrat got within single digits.
Rob Quist didn’t lose; Rob Quist fell just 6% short of pulling an earth-shattering upset.
OK, you say. But Kansas, Georgia, Montana — why haven’t we won one yet? The answer is simple: We are fighting deep within Republican territory.
Nate Silver pointed out that there are roughly 120 Republican-held Districts in which Trump performed worse than in MT-AL. There are 47 GOP-held districts more Democratic-leaning than GA-06. You know how many seats we need to win back the House?
Winning one of these seats would be great. (And we still have even odds to pull off a win in Georgia on June 20th.) But the mere fact that we are keeping these races within single digits suggests that we are on track for the sort of wave election Democrats haven’t seen in a generation.
If you think that’s just spin, take a look at the early, sudden decisions of
some House Republicans to retire rather than face the electorate next year. Or the thousands of fresh faces thinking about running for office for the first time as Democrats.
That’s no accident. That’s what a successful, growing resistance looks like.
And we are only getting stronger.
In the weekend after Trump took office, 200,000 of you signed up to get to work on winning back the House. That number is well over 300,000 now. When the House passed Trumpcare, Swing Left and other groups raised millions of dollars to fund the opponents of the people who voted for it.
And in the days leading up to the election in Montana, 230 of you opened your homes to other volunteers and along with DFA and other partners made 400,000 calls to voters in Big Sky Country. That’s incredible!
Starting next week, we’ll do the same to help Jon Ossoff in Georgia. You can host a phone-banking house party to help elect Ossoff. Sign up here.
So is the resistance just smoke?
Oh, no. We are fire. And we are just warming up.
— Ethan Todras-Whitehill, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Swing Left, @etwhitehill