Tennessee is a pretty red state, with over 60% of the votes in the 2016 presidential election going for Donald Trump. The State Senate is comprised of 15 Republicans and 1 Democrat and the State House is split 74 Republicans to 25 Democrats.
SO --- imagine the surprise this weekend in Shelby County when Democrats won 21 out of the 26 seats up for grabs! Commercial Appeal reports that of the top 10 seats in the county, including mayor and sheriff, the Democrats managed to clinch EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.
Prior to the election, Republicans held 9 of those seats. So not only did Democrats hold onto their one, but they flipped the other 9! Blue wave? Nah - that is a blue tsunami.
Devastating is the only way to describe the loss. A wake up call. A bullhorn.
The newly elected Mayor, Democrat Lee Harris, won by over 10 points. In Tennessee.
So what does this tell us as we go look forward to the midterms in less than 100 days?
1. Democrats are fired up. They are showing up. They are voting early and they are making sure their vote counts.
2. Trump is hurting his own party. Republicans lining up behind his nativist rhetoric are playing a dangerous game - firing up support from red hat-wearing MAGA loons, but also potentially pushing away moderate Republicans who aren't totally sold on "kids in cages" and taking away health insurance while simultaneously making CEO's richer than they already are.
3. Democrats with a solid message get the votes. Being articulate about issues that matter versus being purely anti-Trump resonates more with voters.
Let's see what happens in Ohio-12 today. A loss, if it is close, would make Republicans in DC worry. A straight up loss would be a magnitude 10 earthquake going off in the halls of Congress.