Last week’s landmark Democratic wins for the Virginia House of Delegates were an extremely big deal, but because election season is never over when it comes to state legislative special elections, Team Blue had another chance to deliver even more victories this Tuesday.
And they did.
Democrats just flipped yet another deep red seat in Oklahoma. This brings the total of Democratic pickups in contested special elections to 14 this cycle—and four of those pickups have been in super-Republican Oklahoma.
Tuesday’s flip was in Senate District 37, a seat just west of Tulsa that went 67-27 for Donald Trump in 2016 and 69-31 for Mitt Romney in 2012. Last fall, Democrats spent $200,000 to try to win this seat, only to lose to the GOP by 15 points. This time, Democrat Allison Ikley-Freeman, a therapist at a non-profit community mental health agency who campaigned on ending Oklahoma’s education crisis and expanding access to health care, won 50.3 to 49.7—performing 40 points better than the presidential results just a year ago to secure this victory.
This flip follows special election pickups for Democrats in Washington and Georgia just last week, flips in Florida, New Hampshire, and Oklahoma in September, and two more pickups in Oklahoma in July. In May, Democrats flipped another state House seat in New Hampshire and a state Assembly seat in New York. In almost all of these races, the Democrat not only won but also over-performed the presidential numbers in their districts by double digits, by margins that range from 11 percent all the way to 48 percent. And let’s not forget Democrats’ epic wins in Virginia on Nov. 7—15 and counting—as well as at least two pickups in New Jersey.
This feels like old news at this point, but it bears repeating: Republicans at every level of the ballot have been in danger all year and have everything to fear in 2018.