Representative Max Rose defeated incumbent Representative Daniel Donovan in 2018 in New York’s 11th Congressional District, which voted for President Donald Trump in the 2016 election by 10 percentage points. The 11th District was certainly not the only district that fell to the blue wave in the 2018 midterm elections. According to Rasmussen Reports, Democrats flipped 31 districts that voted for Trump in 2016 and overtook many districts that narrowly voted for Hillary Clinton. I firmly believe, however, that many of these districts, including NY’s 11th District, will flip red in 2020.
Rep. Max Rose recently made headlines because he initially refused to support impeachment proceedings while many other House Democrats quickly got on board after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made the announcement on Sept. 25, as reported by the New Yorker. But that changed when Rose proclaimed that he was in support of impeachment at a town hall meeting in his home district on Oct. 3. To say the least, Rose’s support of the impeachment inquiry is risky. He is telling voters that he stands directly against President Trump in a district that is more favorable to the president than anywhere else in New York City. Furthermore, Rep. Max Rose has only voted in line with Trump’s position 4.3 percent of the time. To put this in context, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a self-proclaimed Democratic-Socialist, votes in line with President Trump 14.9 percent of the time. I judge people by their actions and not their words. Max Rose isn’t a “centrist populist,” as he usually calls himself; he’s a liberal Democrat who doesn’t represent the will of the people in New York’s 11th Congressional District.
Strong Republican candidates are beginning to emerge as challengers to Rose in the district, including Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, who is the only Hispanic Republican official in New York City, as confirmed by her campaign website. In her failed mayoral run, Malliotakis garnered 70 percent of the vote from Staten Island, which makes up much of the 11th District. A valiant Trump supporter, Malliotakis has proved that she has what it takes to win in the crucial swing district.
This trend, which should worry Democrats, is unfolding around our nation. In the 2018 midterm elections, the blue wave overcame four districts in Orange County, California. But I think that most, if not all, of these districts will fall back into Republican hands in the 2020 election. Like Rep. Max Rose, Rep. Harley Rouda who represents the 48th District of California routinely votes in line with the more progressive wing of the Democratic Party. A recent poll by Politico put Rouda neck-and-neck with a GOP opponent. This should be surprising because Hillary Clinton won this district in 2016 by five percentage points. From what I can see, House Democrats that embrace progressive plans like Medicare for All and tuition-free college may face enormous difficulty getting re-elected in swing districts around America. Even voters who are disillusioned with President Trump could vote against their Democratic representatives for supporting such nonsensical plans.
Rep. Max Rose’s standing in the 11th District of New York is a prime example of what is occurring in districts around the nation. My two-cents on this issue: don’t be surprised to see Republicans take back swing districts in 2020.