The Corner


More Expectations Games

Yesterday I noted that Rahm Emanuel was pretending that midterm elections often go well for the party in power when there is a good economy, suggesting that he was trying to make Republican losses look worse when they materialize.

Today I see that RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel is doing the same thing in reverse: making some possible gains for her party in the election look like more amazing accomplishments than they would be. The RNC just sent around a Fox Business clip highlighting her comment that “we will keep the Senate and perhaps expand and gain seats which is unprecedented in that first midterm of a first-term president.”

The president’s party gained seats in the first midterm in 1934, 1962, and 2002. It’s not unprecedented, although it is less common than losing seats. And this year’s Senate races are on extremely good terrain for Republicans: Karl Rove has written, “This is the most favorable Senate map for the party in the White House since senators were first popularly elected in 1914.”

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

The Real Reason for That Kavanaugh Smear

The New York Times on Saturday joined The New Yorker and many other media outlets in upending a dumpster full of garbage on its own reputation in an effort to smear Brett Kavanaugh. After more than a year of digging, the Democrats and their media allies still have no supported allegations of sexual misconduct by ... Read More
Politics & Policy

CNN: Everything but the News

For a while, we thought MSNBC had temporarily usurped CNN as the font of fake news — although both networks had tied for the most negative coverage (93 percent of all their news reports) of President Trump’s first 100 days in office. A cynic would argue that CNN had deliberately given Trump undue coverage ... Read More