DEMS/GOP/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “In the 2016 presidential election Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the 18th Congressional District in southwestern Pennsylvania by 58%-38%, and rolled up a margin over his Democratic rival of more than 72,000 votes. That showing was one of Trump’s strongest in a state that he only won by some 44,000 votes. Republican Rep. Tim Murphy, who represented the 18th, was reelected without opposition that year, just as he was in 2014.
But 16 months later, Democrat Conor Lamb has claimed victory and appears to have won a whisker-thin victory in special election to replace Murphy, who resigned after a personal scandal. CNN and other news organizations have not declared Lamb the winner, pending a complete tally of absentee, provisional and military ballots. Whatever the final outcome, the collapse of the Trump vote in a range of places, from well-heeled suburban enclaves around Pittsburgh, to working class townships, from exurbs to rural boroughs, should be a severe wake-up call for Republicans who must defend dozens of similar districts in the midterm elections just eight months from now.
And for Democrats fighting over the future of their party, it’s a message that they can field moderate candidates who can win in Trump country if they can turn out the vote.”
–James A. Barnes, “How the Trump Vote Collapsed in Pennsylvania,” CNN Politics, CNN.com, Mar. 14, 2018 2:40pm