Darrell Issa, the California Congressman who has been dubbed “Mr. Investigation” for his role as chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, may be on his way out of Congress thanks to a Democratic challenger who also happens to be a Marine Corps veteran.
In 2012 and 2014, Issa won convincingly by 30 points or more. But this time his challenger, Doug Applegate, came within 6 percent of the eight-term Issa. Under California’s open primary system, Applegate’s performance meant he will now compete against Issa for his seat representing the state’s 49th congressional district in the general election this November.
Applegate’s showing in the primary has also helped boost the Iraq War veteran’s fundraising efforts: He raised $128,000 between the announcement of the primary results and the end of June, compared with jus $58,000 he raised beforehand. His campaign manager, Robert Dempsey, said the campaign is now operating with a budget in the neighborhood” of $1 million. Issa’s campaign budget stands $3.8 million. Applegate noted:
“In talking with donors, I was told: ‘If you come within 20 points in the primary, call me back.’ And actually I said, ‘Democrats don’t perform that well in primaries. You are setting a bar that I will never be able to call you back. That’s not fair.’”
And Issa’s ties to GOP nominee Donald Trump are also hurting him. Issa has endorsed Trump, which could prove costly. Arecent poll taken by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) showed that 60 percent of residents in the district have an unfavorable view of the Orange Menace. Orange County Democratic Party chair Henry Vandermeir said the plan is to tie Trump around Issa’s neck like a proverbial albatross:
“Donald Trump has become our best marketing tool. He’s insulted pretty much every constituency in this county, which has helped drive Democratic registration and turnout to new highs.”
So on Election Day, California residents could be saying goodbye to both Donald Trump and Darrell Issa. That sounds like a great result no matter how you slice it.
This article was originally published by the same author at Liberal America.org