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Jon Ossoff Is The Wendy Davis Of 2017

Jon Ossoff’s loss in Georgia’s special election is a repeat lesson for Democrats. In 2014 they flooded Texas with outsider cash, but Wendy Davis lost in a landslide.

In the most expensive U.S. House race in history, Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff lost to Republican Karen Handel Tuesday night in a special election in Georgia’s sixth congressional district. The outcome of the race—Handel won 53 percent to Ossoff’s 47 percent, a much larger margin than predicted—should remind Democrats of the last time they flooded an election with out-of-state cash: Wendy Davis’s infamous run for Texas governor in 2014.

There were two main angles to the story of this race: money and Trump. Ossoff spent $25 million in a race that was largely billed as a referendum on Donald Trump’s presidency, with Ossoff predictably styled as a symbol of the anti-Trump “resistance.”

But it turned out to be more of a referendum on the Democratic Party, which should know that huge amounts of funding from outside donors and the Democratic National Committee doesn’t guarantee a win. It should also know that voters don’t really like being told what to think, especially not by people who don’t live in their state. The bulk of Ossoff’s campaign donations of course came from large Democratic states like New York, California, and Massachusetts, with a mere 14 percent coming from Georgia voters. By contrast, 56 percent of Handel’s contributions came from in-state donors.

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Additional reading:

A Reality Check about What Handel’s Win Means – National Review

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