Republicans have been quite surprised at something they've discovered about the presidential candidate.
House Republicans have gotten a pleasant surprise over Donald Trump’s candidacy: he’s not negatively affecting their own campaigns as much as they thought. Trump’s bombastic and unpopular campaign had many House Republicans worried he’d drag them down with him, but five weeks before Election Day, they only stand to lose a few seats as it currently stands.
While that could change at any point, there doesn’t appear to be much of a chance that Democrats come in an sweep through the House, wresting back control of Congress.
Of course, if Trump has another brutal debate performance or melts down in the last few weeks that could change. But so far his poor performances haven’t impacted other people in the Republican Party.
Democrats are arguing that Republicans shouldn’t get too comfortable, and that there was plenty of time for Clinton to widen their lead. Indeed, Republicans have many incumbents that do not have safe leads. Considering the fact that Americans are in the mood for change right now, and Republicans control Congress, they are certainly at risk.
But the Trump effect doesn’t appear to be playing a part at this point. Even if Trump fails to beat Clinton, voters don’t seem to be penalizing Republicans: after all, Trump doesn’t seem like much of a Republican at all to most people.
And the Democrats are partly to blame for that. Painting Trump as not a true Republican may hurt the party in Congress. Clinton labeled Trump as the representative of the “alt-right,” and President Obama said at the convention that he didn’t resemble much of what the party stood for.