The Republican Party’s election night gains in the House of Representatives alarmed moderate members of the Democratic caucus.

“We need to not ever use the word ‘socialist’ or ‘socialism’ ever again,” Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-Virginia, reportedly yelled at her colleagues during a post-election conference call.

Even in California, where  Democrats are securely in charge of every branch of government, the Republican Party has now retaken four of the seven House seats it lost to Democrats in 2018.

Not that it was a rout. The margin of victory was razor-close in District 25, where Rep. Mike Garcia again defeated Assemblymember Christy Smith to hang onto the seat he won in a May special election after Democrat Katie Hill resigned. Further north, former Rep. David Valadao won back the seat he lost to Democrat T.J. Cox by a margin of 50.4 percent to 49.6 percent.

In Orange County, Republican Young Kim ousted Rep. Gil Cisneros by a margin of 50.6 percent to 49.4 percent, and the GOP’s Michelle Steel won a relative landslide of 51.1 percent to defeat Harley Rouda.

The close margins set up a civil war in the Democratic Party over whether the next candidate for those seats should be more moderate or more progressive.



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