Kentucky Election '19 may sway national 2020 strategy

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) — Kentucky's election results are echoing through the halls of power in Washington.

Democrat Andy Beshear is poised to become the next governor in the deep-red Bluegrass State (Source: Gray DC).

Washington insiders are re-calibrating campaign strategy now that Attorney General Andy Beshear (D-Kentucky) is poised to become the next governor of the deep-red Bluegrass State.

Incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin (R-Kentucky) strongly tied his campaign to President Donald Trump, but fell about 4,000 votes short by Tuesday's tally.

"It is a major wakeup call for the Republicans, and I'd certainly expect them to be running scared today," said David Bergstein, the Democratic National Committee's director of battleground state communications.

While Republicans won five of the six statewide races in Kentucky Tuesday night, Bergstein said he sees the results as a major victory. The president won Kentucky by 30 points in 2016, but Bergstein said voters just sent a distinctly different message straight to the White House.

"Because Trump went to Kentucky, he campaigned for Bevin," Bergstein explained, "he actually said, 'Bevin, if you lose, it's going to look really bad for me', and it does."

"I think that's infantile analysis," said Trump 2020 Director of Strategic Communications Marc Lotter.

He said the race may not be over, as a closer inspection of the razor-thin result in the governor's race is likely.

And, while the president is wildly popular in the state, surveys pegged Bevin as the least popular governor in the country. Lotter argues presidential support is the only reason the race was close, and may have boons.

"These governors' races, they're very important... from a state perspective," he said, "but when it comes to the national elections, they don't matter that much."

There's another potential test of the president's influence just around the corner. President Trump is throwing his political weight behind the Republican gubernatorial candidate in Louisiana. Voters there go to the polls in 10 days.

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