Look at the recent Daily Bits on the website. McCready loses NC 09, Trump’s crime against humanity

2020               General Election

How do we talk about 2020? Are we facing the apocalypse? Donald Trump has an appetite for authoritarian rule. Has he created an appetite among the people for his authoritarian rule? Even if he is defeated, he will not go away. Even if he is prosecuted for his crimes – business related from the past, political from the present – he will not go away. Even if he loses his mind altogether, he will not go away. His supporters will not go away. The country has changed.

We can’t change it back. We can change it for the better. Republicans do not expect to regain the House of Representatives. Donald Trump is dismayed by what he sees for 2020. Republicans see the Senate as their line of defense.

Republicans hold the Senate 53-47. Democrats regain control of the Senate if they win the Presidency and a net of three seats.

  • Can Doug Jones keep his seat in Alabama? Maybe. He is a civil rights hero and his polling looks like West Virginia’s Joe Manchin.
  • Can Democrats beat incumbent Corey Gardner in Colorado? Ten Democratic candidates think they can.
  • Can Mark Kelly defeat Senate appointee Martha McSally? Astronaut, Gabby Giffords’ husband v. the first American woman to fly in combat.
  • Can Sara Gideon https://saragideon.com defeat Susan Collins? The Speaker of the House in Maine versus a candidate running for her fifth term?

Maine’s term-limited governor, Paul LePage was a local Donald Trump. Susan Collins is a moderate Republican compared to Paul LePage. Some credit Collins as a moderate without comparing her to LePage.  She earns credit, for instance, by having been one of the votes against abolishing the Affordable Care Act.  Jared Golden, a former aide to Collins and newly elected Democratic Representative from ME 02 says he will remain neutral in the Maine Senate race. You could not get a critical comment about Collins from the moderate Senator Dianne Feinstein of California.

Collins sounds like she doesn’t think much of Sara Gideon as an opponent. She compares Sara Gideon unfavorably to her 2008 opponent who she defeated by a 3-2 margin. Why that comparison? Sara Gideon’s husband, Ben Rogoff Gideon was Congressman Tom Allen’s Political Director.

Despite the disparagement, Susan Collins will not underestimate Sara Gideon as her 2020 opponent. Collins will raise millions for what is ordinarily a small market. Mitch McConnell will ensure that she does not run short of money.

Sara Gideon will not lack for money, either. She has criticized corporate PACs, but will take the money she needs to run a campaign. She and her husband will not rely solely on small-donor Democrats. Her husband has a legal practice in Maine, but he is not a country lawyer. Neither Gideon is a revolutionary. An analyst might say that there are two ways to control corporations. Regulate them. Sue them. Ben Gideon sues them: product liability, negligence, civil rights violations. He also talks to them. So does she.

Sara Gideon has a story about getting into politics. There was a phone message for her husband. Would he run for town council? She returned the call. She said she would run.

She served on the Freeport town council then ran for the Maine House of Representatives in 2012. In 2014, she became Assistant Majority Leader of the House. In 2016, she won a three-person contest to be Speaker. Rapid progress.

Not a local. She grew up in East Greenwich, Rhode Island. Her mom descends from Armenian immigrants. Her dad is a first generation Indian American, a pediatrician. A cheerleader in high school, she, nevertheless, had serious policy interests.  She went to the Elliot School of International Affairs at George Washington University.  Served an internship with Rhode Island Senator Clairborne Pell.

Sara Gideon is a serious politician and an effective Speaker of the House. She demonstrated a commitment to ease access to medical care. She was a leading proponent of a successful referendum to support Medicaid expansion. When LePage vetoed a bill to make the opioid antidote Narcan available over the counter, Sara Gideon made it law leading the override effort. She proposed and guided legislation making it permissible for Nurse Practitioners to perform abortions.  A contrast to Susan Collins, whose vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court was a vote to restrict abortions.

Sara Gideon’s campaign began with a bang and a stumble, maybe two. The bang was her capacity to raise money. A million dollars in a day. She will have little trouble in the Democratic primary (which doesn’t happen until June, 2020). She will be a challenge to Susan Collins.

She can’t stumble often. Sara Gideon has acknowledged violating election laws when she was reimbursed for a donation to her own PAC. There were four violations. In effect, she was violating a rule that prohibited her from making a donation with someone else’s money. She made it right with a payment of $3,250. This was not a big money violation. At a time when PACs are receiving millions, Susan Collins sympathizers will have to stretch to make much of the campaign violation. The other stumble? She wore a jacket in a campaign ad with the logo of Democrat-friendly Patagonia. The logo was erased from subsequent ads. Though she was not always on good terms with constituent L.L. Bean while on Freeport’s Town Council, she decided that wearing a jacket displaying a competitor’s logo was unwise.

Sara Gideon has been elected by two small constituencies. Her House district, ME HD 48. . The most votes she received was 4,003, defeating a Republican 72-26 for reelection in 2018. The Democrats in Maine’s House of Representatives. She was elected Speaker in a three-way race. She is reaching out to a larger constituency – the State of Maine. She has reached out to that constituency before. For referendums. Not on her own behalf. She will need large donors and small donors, local volunteers and national volunteers.

Join the fray. Help Sara Gideon make the US Senate Democratic. There was a time when Susan Collins was the most popular Senator in the country. No longer. Collins is vulnerable. Her Kavanaugh vote made her vulnerable. Check out Sara Gideon’s website and make a donation.

We know who the Democratic nominee will be in some of the Senate battlegrounds. The contest for the US Senate is big-time national politics. Pick the candidates you like. Consider monthly donations. Consider ways to volunteer.

Alabama                    Reelect Doug Jones

Arizona                       Elect Astronaut Mark Kelly

Maine                         Elect Maine House Majority Leader Sara Gideon

Michigan                     Reelect Gary Peters

Minnesota                  Reelect Tina Smith

New Hampshire        Jeanne Shaheen

There are some longshot Senate candidates to consider.

Arkansas                    Elect non-profit head Josh Mahoney

Mississippi                Elect former Congressman and Ag Secy Mike Espy

South Carolina           Elect former Party Chair Jaime Harrison

Tennessee                   Elect attorney and army vet James Mackler

There are states where Democrats have a chance, but we are not yet sure who the Democratic candidate will be.

Alaska                        Maybe Surgeon Al Gross

Colorado                    Ten candidates, maybe Governor John Hickenlooper

Georgia (A) (B)         Three announced candidates for (A) before (B) was open

Iowa                            Four announced candidates, maybe Theresa Greenfield

Kansas                       Two Democrats have announced

Kentucky                    Retired Marine Pilot Amy McGrath? Sports jock Matt Jones?

Montana                     Maybe Mayor Wilmot Collins

North Carolina          Three announced candidates

South Dakota             No one has announced. Maybe ex Min Leader Billie Sutton?

Texas                            Five announced candidates