It’s Wednesday, January 29. The CDC has confirmed another U.S. case of coronavirus. “Based on what’s known so far, the virus is dangerous,” James Hamblin writes, “but not unprecedentedly so.”
On Capitol Hill, the question-and-answer portion of the impeachment trial started on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Republicans seem poised to block the testimony of new witnesses—including John Bolton.
In the rest of today’s newsletter: Republicans come back to life in Texas. Plus: What Iowans of color really think of the state’s caucuses.
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Texas Isn’t Purple Just Yet
In 2018, Republicans in Texas got caught napping.
Accustomed to one-party rule, the GOP lost control of two House seats and nearly lost a Senate race to Democrat Beto O’Rourke.
But this week, Democrats got a rude awakening that Republicans aren’t going to easily cede more ground. In a special election that had captured the attention of national figures in both parties, a Republican candidate for the Texas state House walloped his Democratic opponent.
It’s just one election, but as my colleague Russell Berman writes, it still has lessons for both parties as they head into November.
Democratic operatives I spoke with this morning conceded that it was a stretch to call Texas a winnable state for the party’s eventual presidential nominee in 2020. (These dampened expectations are a contrast to the hype that built up after 2016, when the nine-point gap between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in Texas was smaller than the gap in Iowa and barely larger than the one in Ohio.) … In 2018, O’Rourke’s near-upset of Cruz was a wake-up call for Texas Republicans. Yesterday, in their first 2020 test, they answered it.
Texas’s quickly changing demographics have long given Democrats a sense of hope. Since 2010, as Ronald Brownstein writes, Texas has added four times the number of new Latino residents as white residents.