2017 Post-Election Day Memo: Enhanced Liberal Operations Result in Blue States Voting More Blue




David James

Enhanced Liberal Operations Result in Blue States Voting More Blue

RSLC Continues to Push Focus on State Races

WASHINGTON, D.C. (November 8, 2017) –  Going into Election night, the Republican State Leadership Committee had helped to build ten Republican majorities across seven traditionally blue states including the Washington Senate and Virginia House.  Democrats and their liberal billionaire allies outspent Republicans by millions to achieve operational victories in already blue states.  For example, going into election night, Republicans held a 66-34 majority in Virginia’s House of Delegates, including 17 districts that Hillary Clinton won in 2016. Democrats knew they had to spend heavily this cycle to compete in districts that they won at the federal level in multiple cycles.

With most of the returns now reported, RSLC President Matt Walter released the following statement regarding Tuesday night’s election returns and what they mean for 2018:

“The numbers show Democrats spent millions more to fight in state and local races. Their money was invested in a network of over a dozen new and enhanced liberal, special interest groups, modeled after the RSLC’s successful 2010 REDMAP program. Virginia, Washington and New Jersey have been blue states, despite what some in the national media may try to suggest, and Republicans moved deep into their turf over the past eight years. Opposition to freedom, security and economic opportunity, led by Barack Obama and Eric Holder, is real and well-funded.  Blue state majorities in Washington, Virginia and other states will remain targets in the coming years, but the results from last night indicate an elevated threat level to more of the 2010 REDMAP successes.  We must be prepared for the Democrats’ enhanced organization and spending abilities.”

Initial data from Tuesday night tells us: 

Virginia – What we know so far, as final results are still to be certified, as the HOD is still in play at this hour: 

  • 96 of 100 state House Districts voted for the same Party as the 2016 presidential election results.
  • Of the 15 seats that appear to have flipped to Democrats, 14 of the 15 voted for Clinton in 2016.
  • Republicans still hold three Clinton districts (HD40, 94 and 100), while Democrats will hold only 1 Trump district (HD85).


  • In the special election for State Senate District 45, an area that stands in the shadow of the statue of Lenin in the Seattle area, initial returns show Republican Jinyoung Englund at 44.58%—nearly 18 points higher than previous federal Republican candidates.

New Jersey

  • In State Senate District 2, Republican Chris Brown defeated Democrat incumbent Colin Bell, 54% (24,170 votes) to 46% (20,528 votes), respectively.  This district had been carried by both Obama and Clinton by double digits.

About the RLCC

The Republican Legislative Campaign Committee (RLCC) is the only national organization dedicated exclusively to electing more Republicans to state legislatures. The RLCC’s primary mission is gaining Republican control of more state legislative chambers by targeting national resources to support winnable local races. Since its formation in 2003, the RLCC has assisted in bringing successes to numerous legislative chambers, and winning historic majorities in states nationwide. In the 2015-2016 cycle, Republicans retained an all-time high of 69 of 99 Republican-held chambers by defending 56 majorities and flipping an additional three chambers in Kentucky, Iowa and Minnesota, as well as bringing the Connecticut state Senate to a tie.


The Republican State Leadership Committee (RSLC) is the largest caucus of Republican state leaders in the country and the only national organization whose mission is to elect Republicans to multiple down-ballot, state-level offices. Since 2002, the RSLC has been working to elect candidates to the offices of lieutenant governor, secretary of state, state legislator, the judiciary and other down-ticket races. In 2016, state-level Republicans maintained a record 69 of 99 legislative chamber majorities in red, purple and blue states, held 31 lieutenant governor seats, and grew to 31 secretaries of state. To learn more about the RSLC, please visit www.rslc.gop or follow @RSLC on Twitter.