Kentucky election results could be indicator for 2020
The big state races in Kentucky could be a sign of what’s to come in Washington D.C. next year.
WKYT’s Chief National Political Analyst Greta Van Susteren joined Bill Bryant and Barbara Bailey Wednesday to discuss what the 2019 elections in Kentucky could mean for the 2020 elections.
Following is a transcript of that interview:
Barbara Bailey: “What are people in Washington saying today about Kentucky and about what’s next?”
Greta Van Susteren: “Alright, well, first of all, all eyes are on Kentucky. I mean, look, President Trump won Kentucky by 30 points last time around. In fact, John McCain in 2008 won it by a lot, and so did Romney in 2012, so, when President Trump went out to Kentucky to help the governor, people thought in the Republican Party, that that would bring the governor to a victory, and obviously, that didn’t happen. The big question here for the Trump campaign is why did the governor lose, assuming that, ultimately he does lose – and he has not conceded at this point – why did he lose? Did he lose because he hitched his wagon to President Trump, or did he lose because he’s just so unpopular with Kentucky voters? I mean, a lot of other Republicans did well in Kentucky, but, I can tell you one thing, Trump put a lot of his credibility on the line by doing that rally, and he was not able to get him re-elected, so, the Republican campaign for President Trump is feeling stung today, but the election is a long way off.”
Bill Bryant: “Do you think they have to go back and consider, ‘Does this mean any kind of tarnished brand for the president?’ or was this just a statewide election with local issues and the president’s influence didn’t weigh-in in any way?”
GVS: “Well, if you read the president’s tweets, the Governor of Mississippi won, the Republican governor, he takes credit for that, he’s certainly not taking any credit for the loss of Governor Bevin in Kentucky. I don’t know what it necessarily means - you have to look at all these snapshots and realize we’re such a long way off from the election. People today are saying ‘Who won? Who lost?’ but this certainly is not a successful story for President Trump. He likes to talk about how successful he is, and right now he’s blaming this loss totally on the governor himself. Kentucky is a strong Republican state, and you can tell by looking at the Republican legislature – I suppose President Trump can take some solace in the fact that maybe they just don’t like your governer in your state.
Barbara Bailey: “Now, Greta, as we’re looking ahead for next year, Senator Mitch McConnell is up for reelection, along with President Trump. What do you think this means for that race, for their reelection prospects?”
GVS: “Well, I think that Senator McConnell is probably walking on pins and needles, wondering how to handle the impeachment trial, should the impeachment trial get to the Senate because he’s in charge in the Senate. I know that he has a formidable opponent in the race, so, he has to worry about that, and sometimes incumbents have a rough time when they’ve been in office for a long time inspiring their electorate to come out and vote. But, you know, President Trump still might be pretty popular in your state, and if he’s popular in his state, Senator McConnell is probably pretty safe. On the other hand, if all of a sudden President Trump gets very unpopular among the Republicans, and the Democrats really come out to vote in Kentucky and then he doesn’t win Kentucky in November of 2020, you can expect that one of the casualties will be Senator McConnell, because the vote is probably going to be linked to President Trump, because he’s going to have to be out there defending President Trump when he’s shepherding that trial through the Senate.”
You can watch Full Court Press with Greta Van Susteren every Sunday at 11:30 a.m. on WKYT.