Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andy Beshear scored an apparent upset victory on Tuesday in Kentucky, narrowly defeating incumbent Republican governor Matt Bevin.
Bevin has yet to concede the race, citing “irregularities” and the close margins as reasons to continue the fight.
President Donald J. Trump held a large rally in Lexington on election eve to marshal support for Bevin, but these efforts either came up short or triggered a massive response from Democrats which may have been just enough to push Beshear over the edge.
Republicans pointed out that Bevin’s popularity ranked among the lowest for governors, and that the GOP won every other state-wide race in Kentucky.
NNP Quote: “Won 5 out of 6 elections in Kentucky, including 5 great candidates that I spoke for and introduced last night. [Matt Bevin] picked up at least 15 points in last days, but perhaps not enough (Fake News will blame Trump!).” – Tweet from President Donald J. Trump
NNP Background: Since Trump took office in 2017, Democrats have won back hundreds of state legislative seats and flipped a number of state governorships, recouping steep losses sustained under Obama’s two terms.
Undoubtedly, Trump’s presence in the Oval Office has galvanized Democratic organization and turnout, carrying the Democrats to victories on the state and national level in off-year and the mid-terms during Trump’s first term.
To get both perspectives on these events, we analyzed an article from a left-leaning media source and an article from a right-leaning media source below!
What the left said
- Left wing media focused on the crushing defeat of Bevin in a state Trump carried by 30 points, even after the President flew out for an election eve rally to boost turnout.
- The article referenced Trump’s rally rumination that a Bevin loss would send a “bad message”, stating flatly that the “‘bad message’ was sent” in the election results on Tuesday.
- Progressive media declared that, for all of Trump’s vaunted political sway, his appearance in ruby-red Kentucky “was not enough to carry [Bevin] on Election Day.”
- Finally, the article speculated that Trump’s prediction on Wednesday -that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will “win big” in Kentucky next year – must be “cold comfort” to the Senate Republican.
In Case You Missed It
What the right said
- Conservative media shifted the focus away from Trump to Bevin’s unpopularity and missteps in the gubernatorial campaign.
- Right wing media hinted that the race was influenced by an “infusion” of “interesting local factors and national leftist movements.”
- Also, the article blamed personal factors, such as “early missteps and controversies” in Bevin’s first term that led to “low approval ratings.”
- Left wing media cast the Beshear win as one potentially foreshadowing Election Day 2020, a canary in the coal mine that shows the outermost limits of Trump’s political capital.
- Though Trump’s team today is touting Trump’s last-minute rally as preventing a rout, progressives simply point to Republicans’ efforts to save the governorship – in a state that voted for Trump by 30+ points in 2016 – as an ominous sign for 2020.
- Right wing media focused on the unpopularity of Bevin and simultaneously on the other state-wide victories in Kentucky, carefully minimizing attention on Trump’s efforts to aid the embattled governor.
- Conservatives would like to pin responsibility for the loss squarely on Bevin, preferring to avoid the elephant in the room – that Trump’s political capital may be petering out, or actually working against the GOP.
THINK FOR YOURSELF! Read our quoted article from the left here.
THINK FOR YOURSELF! Read our quoted article from the right here.