We don’t know what the U.S. House split will be after the 2020 election, but Republicans look like they will be celebrating surprise wins in two seats Democrats took two years ago.
In Florida, former Mayor Carlos Gimenez (R) knocked off incumbent Democrat Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell.
Gimenez, a Cuban immigrant, took down the poshly named Democrat in part by aligning himself with President Trump. The president overperformed Miami-Dade County en route to taking Florida in a convincing statewide win. Gimenez was outraised by Mucarsel-Powell about 3 to 1, but it appears the president’s strong performance plus a barrage of outside spending helped propel him to victory.
In New York, Democrat Rep. Max Rose was another who surfed into office on the 2018 blue wave. That wave receded, leaving Rose behind challenger Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R) as of this writing. New York’s 11th District is on Staten Island and is NYC’s only true swing district. Rose has not yet conceded the race with absentee ballots still yet to count, and it’s possible he could still eke out a win. But Malliotakis has declared victory. The NY Post reported that she has a “commanding lead” over Rose.
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Rose’s vote to impeach President Trump did not help him with Republicans in the district. Neither did his support for defunding police. His vote against Rep. Nancy Pelosi for Speaker hurt him with Democrats in the district. Plenty of the district’s voters resent everything about how the Democrats under Mayor Bill de Blasio run New York City.
Malliotakis attacked de Blasio’s mismanagement of the city head-on.
When I was fighting de Blasio’s plan to close Rikers, end bail and defund the police, Max Rose was lending his support for all three. That’s why the @NYCPBA has endorsed me. Join our team: https://t.co/glcZgG9oLy pic.twitter.com/5AwrozcM2v
— Nicole Malliotakis (@NMalliotakis) August 25, 2020
She earned law enforcement endorsements and appears poised to win. Like Gimenez, the 39-year-old Malliotakis is a Cuban-American.
If there’s a message in these two wins, it’s that Cuban-Americans have suffered directly under socialism. They’re stepping up to defend America as the Democrats lurch left, and voters are supporting them.