Gergen: Special election victories show Trump could beat Dems in 2020

President Donald Trump said he hopes Democrats keep Nancy Pelosi in her role as House Minority Leader.

Democratic challenger Jon Ossof was hoping to flip the historically red district by campaigning not just against his opponent, but also President Trump.

"I don't think people in the beltway are realizing just how toxic the Democratic Party brand is in so many parts of the country", said Ryan.

After Democrat losses in the November election, Ryan challenged Pelosi for her leadership position, but she went on to win an eighth term as Democrat leader.

Democratic critics say it's time to change the party's House leadership, which has been static for over a decade, to make room for fresh voices and a new direction. He tried and failed last fall to unseat Pelosi as House minority leader.

Republican Karen Handel on election day after she is projected the victor for the Georgia 6th District special election on June 20, 2017.

White House spokeswoman Lindsay Walters told reporters aboard Air Force One that Karen Handel's win serves as proof that "the American people are resonating with the president's agenda" and want to see his agenda enacted. Trump said, referring to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Pelosi should watch her back.

The president was on the mind of Democrats gathering for their weekly conference meeting Wednesday morning - but frustrated members made it clear they would find their own way forward after the disappointing losses.

House Speaker Paul Ryan congratulated her on a "hard-earned and well-deserved victory", saying in a statement released Tuesday, "Democrats from coast to coast threw everything they had at this race and Karen would not be defeated".

"If we think we're going to win these elections because President Trump's at 35 percent, I think in districts like mine and certainly Georgia and SC, it takes more than that", said Rep. Tim Walz of Minnesota.

"The whole Democratic message under Pelosi is built on fantasy", Watters said.

Said the 77-year-old California lawmaker: "I feel very confident of the support that I have in my caucus". I have enormous respect for her. In 2010, the "Fire Pelosi" campaign paid dividends for Republicans, and they've used it successfully ever since.

In fact, according to a report in Vox, the main takeaway of the special elections held in 2017 is that the Republicans are in trouble.

Pelosi beat back a leadership challenge late previous year from Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), with two-thirds of her caucus supporting her.

She said the Democrats "gave them a run for their money in all of them". They need to win 24 seats to take control of the House in 2018. We don't have either one of those.

  • Zachary Reyes