The senior Democratic strategist is certainly not pleased with his assessment and he swears he is not pessimistic, just realistic, about the impending midterms. “You have a bad economy, you have high inflation, and it’s an election year-end, so here’s what happens. We will be surrounded. I don’t think it’s the end of the world, though.” A pause, followed by a prediction so softly spoken that its shocking value, if it came true next week, would be easy to miss: “Oh, and Kathy Hochul will lose. “
Other Republican victories are likely to have a larger immediate policy impact — if the GOP wins five House seats, it will regain its majority and cancel the impeachment hearings; if Mehmet Oz, JD Vance, and Herschel Walker victory, the Senate turns red and the future of Joe Bidenhis administration will be determined by Republican obstruction; if Lake Kari and Tim Michels won the races for dominance in Arizona and Wisconsin, two key Voter College 2024 states that will be run by 2020 election deniers, however, not a single result in that number may be more impressive than Hochul, the incumbent Democratic governor, is failing in green New York.
The most recent polls say that won’t happen. But some have shown Hochul’s lead over the Republican congressman Lee Zeldin are dwindling to alarmingly single digits, reflecting both the local troubles and the rigors of the difficulties faced by Democrats across the country. “After Dobbsthere is a feeling that maybe Democrats will go against the trend midterm,” Mike Morey, a top Democratic consultant in New York, referring to the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn federal protections for abortion rights. “But I think we are dealing with a normal political cycle in which the party that loses power does very well.”
Hochul became New York’s first female governor last August after her sudden, scandalous resignation. Andrew Cuomo. She wasted no time deploying incumbent powers, raising $46 million in her first 14 months in office and distributing many times that in state money, some of which was aimed at useful constituencies: nearly $1 billion to build a new stadium for the Buffalo Bills; nearly $6 billion in state subsidies for computer chip factories outside of Syracuse; and $350 million for the Long Island Investment Fund. All of which can create jobs and help her buy some love. However, until very recently, Hochul, barely a household name in New York, has been running a minimal retail or outreach campaign. “I am a three-time top Democrat voter and like all the other top Democrat voters I know, I have not received an email, a phone call, a text message. copy or a digital ad from the governor’s campaign,” said a New York Democrat insider. “It’s basically telling people there’s a damn election. Meanwhile, Zeldin is out there having demonstrations with Ron DeSantis and Glenn Youngkin, and people are showing up for that. Republicans know there’s an election! “
They also know that the biggest problem for many New York voters, of both parties, is crime. Zeldin enthusiastically reduced the increase — with the enthusiastic help of New York Postits front page — but he hasn’t invented the problem. “Don’t get me wrong: Abortion is important and a good issue for Democrats, but it’s not the most important issue for most voters,” said the senior Democratic strategist. tri. “Right now, they are thinking about quality of life — the homeless on the subway scare them. Hochul’s campaign missed that enthusiast. However, concerns do not appear to be high enough to buy Zeldin’s proposed solutions, in a situation where Democrats outnumber Republicans by two to one, and even independents outnumber Republicans by two to one. “He has a narrow lane where he needs independents and disgruntled Democrats, and with the news cycle focused on him, ideas Zeldin’s big deal is equipping teachers with guns,” said Neal Kwatra, a Democratic consultant. “It was an absolute strategic mistake. It will be relatively close, but I think she will win. ”
Hochul’s embarking on the race more closely than usual is perhaps a reminder that New York is not impervious to national forces — a fact made even clearer by one incumbent congressman. Sean Patrick Maloneyof the race in a Hudson Valley county north of New York City. The leader of the Democratic House campaign is fighting for his electoral life against a conservative Republican congressman, Mike Lawler. Maloney blamed himself in part on the predicament. Earlier this year, as chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Maloney attempted to steer the state’s redistricting process in favor of Democrats; Republicans sued, and a special superintendent appointed by the state court redrawn the map to make it more neutral.
New lines are also etched into Maloney’s quarters. To give himself a better shot at a seventh term, Maloney urged a close colleague of the incumbent Democrat, Mondaire Jones. “I will be the first to tell you I can do it better,” Maloney told me. “This is nothing but knowing how important it is to live in the county you represent.” Maloney currently runs in a county that holds only about a third of his former constituency. How vulnerable are the 5-term incumbents? Good, Joe Biden felt the need to step in: Last week, the president called a prominent Hasidic rabbi whose congregation lived in the county and asked him to postpone his re-election.
National Republican groups, seizing the opportunity to take down a prominent Democrat, poured at least $9 million into efforts to defeat Maloney. State Democrats, looking for good news, point to an open congressional seat on Long Island, where Robert Zimmerman, a longtime businessman and party fundraiser, who is running for office for the first time, seems pretty solid. That race could finally turn out to be the biggest bright spot for New York Democrats next week — especially if Hochul and Maloney don’t escape a red wave covering the East Coast.