Democrats were pointing to California as the centerpiece in their effort to take back the House of Representatives.
But their dreams turned into a nightmare.
That’s because they just suffered a defeat that gave Donald Trump the best news of the year.
Democrats need to win back 23 seats to oust the GOP from power in the House of Representatives.
Liberals believe seven competitive House races in California provide them the opportunity to make that a reality.
The left targeted seven suburban seats where the GOP incumbent was running in a Clinton district or open seat as their prime opportunity to flip from red to blue.
But the results of the California primary told a different story.
The first setback for Democrats came in the race to succeed California Governor Jerry Brown.
Democrats were hoping that the state’s “jungle primary” – where all candidates compete in the primary and the two top winners, regardless of party, advance to the General Election – would result in a matchup of two Democrats in November.
That would boost Democrat turnout and doom Republican turnout since there would be no top of the ticket candidate for Republicans to vote for.
But Donald Trump waded into the California primary and endorsed little known Republican businessman John Cox.
Trump’s endorsement was enough for Cox to surge into second place in the primary and secure a place in the General Election to take on Lt. Governor Gavin Newsome.
Trump boasted about that result writing, “Great night for Republicans! Congratulations to John Cox on a really big number in California. He can win. Even Fake News CNN said the Trump impact was really big, much bigger than they ever thought possible. So much for the big Blue Wave, it may be a big Red Wave. Working hard!”
But the news for Democrats got even worse.
In six of the seven target districts, the vote share for Republican candidates exceeded 50 percent in the primaries.
Cumulative GOP percentage in California battlegrounds:
No lockout, but these numbers can't make the @dccc happy.
— Patrick Ruffini (@PatrickRuffini) June 6, 2018
While these results do not automatically mean the GOP will hold those seats, forecasters moved two races into the GOP’s favor, and the voting does show that Democrats chances to sweep those seats to win back a majority in Congress is no slam dunk.
Here's how we'd rank/rate CA's Dem targets after last night:#CA49: OPEN (R): Lean D (was Toss Up)#CA25: Knight (R): Toss Up#CA48: Rohrabacher (R): Toss Up#CA39: OPEN (R): Toss Up#CA10: Denham (R): Toss Up#CA45: Walters (R): Lean R#CA21: Valadao (R): LIkely R (was Lean R)
— Dave Wasserman (@Redistrict) June 6, 2018
It’s ironic that Nancy Pelosi’s home state of California could be the Waterloo for the Democrats chances to win back the House.
When 2018 began, pundits took it as a given that Democrats would sweep California’s competitive races and that winning back the House was a lock.
But while the Democrats are still favored to do well in November and gain seats in Congress, no one has any idea how the November elections will actually shake out.
That’s because Donald Trump’s political standing has greatly improved as Americans increasingly credit him for the booming economy and his attempts to peacefully resolve the North Korean nuclear crisis.
If Republicans can hang on in the House, it would be a crippling blow for Democrats heading into 2020.
Nancy Pelosi would likely be booted from leadership and it would kickoff a bitter fight in the Democrat Party ahead of their 2020 nominating contest.
The party could fracture in two and produce a badly damaged nominee that is hostage to an enraged left-wing base.
That would make whoever wins the Democrat nomination easy pickings for Trump.
We will keep you up to date on any new developments in the 2018 elections.