On Politics With Lisa Lerer: A Midterm Wave? Maybe It’s a ‘Cyclone’

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This is the same district that voted for President Barack Obama by nine points in 2012 but voted for President Trump by 10 points in 2016. In other words … it’s Maine politics. We’re hoping to wrap up our polling in the district tonight. You can follow it live here.

Sharice Davids is part of a wave of L.G.B.T. candidates this election cycle. She’s a Native American, a progressive Democrat, and she’s really good at mixed martial arts. She’s also leading our poll of Kansas’ Third District against a Republican House incumbent in a typically conservative state.

How? Many Republican incumbents are struggling in mostly white and well-educated suburban districts ringing America’s major cities, and that includes the Kansas City suburbs. We expect to complete our polling there tonight. You can follow it live here.

Learn more about our real-time polling project here.

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A day after the second (and perhaps final) debate in the contested Texas Senate race, Manny Fernandez, who covers Texas for The Times, sent us this dispatch from Houston:

It’s been a rough week, politically speaking, for Jim Mattis.

In a “60 Minutes” interview broadcast on Sunday, President Trump said Mr. Mattis, his own defense secretary, was, in a sense, playing for the other team: “I think he’s sort of a Democrat, if you want to know the truth.”

And then on Tuesday, Mr. Mattis received, through no fault of his own, a shout-out from the current prince of Texas Democrats.

At the end of a combative debate in San Antonio, Representative Beto O’Rourke — the El Paso congressman trying to unseat Senator Ted Cruz — stepped from the podium and made a closing statement centered on, of all things, Mr. Mattis, the retired four-star Marine general.

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