GOP flips state Senate seat in Connecticut in potential preview of upcoming elections

Historical trends and conventional wisdom already pointed to Republicans flipping the House in 2022 and beyond. Now, the GOP’s chances in the midterms were just bolstered by a state-level win.

Republican candidate Ryan Fazio won a special election Tuesday night to clinch a seat in Connecticut’s state Senate — a seat previously held by a Democrat, and one in a district won by President Joe Biden in 2020 by a 25-point margin, Breitbart reports.

Notably, this is reportedly the first flip of a legislative seat for either party in a special election since Biden took office.

Flipped seat denies Dems a supermajority

According to the CT Mirror, Fazio prevailed with 50.1% of the vote over a pair of Democratic candidates: Alexis Gevantar, who ran on gun control and received 47.6% of the vote, and John Blankley, who ran a separate campaign after failing to get his party’s nomination, but only managed to garner 2.3% of the vote.

Fazio will now serve out the remainder of a two-year term meant for former state Sen. Alex Kasser (D), who resigned earlier in the year after defeating Fazio last November.

His latest win puts Democrats one seat shy of a supermajority in the state Senate, the Mirror notes.

“A strong campaign”

It’s a development that has Republicans celebrating.

“Congratulations to Ryan Fazio on running a strong campaign,” Dee Duncan, president of the Republican State Leadership Committee (RSCL), said in a statement, according to Breitbart.

“His victory demonstrates that the people of Connecticut are sick and tired of the radical tax and spend agenda coming from Democrats in Hartford and in Washington, D.C.,” Duncan continued. “They’re looking for common-sense leaders who will champion conservative policies that will revive the economy, create jobs, reduce regulations, lower taxes, and keep families safe.”

Duncan also said that with Dems in control of Congress, “it’s more important than ever that we have strong Republican leadership in the states.”

Of course, it didn’t take long for the media to try and downplay the significance of Fazio’s win, with The Hill reporting that Connecticut’s 36th District isn’t actually as “deep-blue” as Biden’s 25-point margin of victory in would suggest. Kasser, the report said, had been the first Democrat to represent that district since the 1930s.

But according to Duncan, Fazio’s victory is a sign of things to come. “Tonight’s result is further evidence that Republicans are on offense this cycle,” he said, according to Breitbart.

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