Not since 1982 has the Democratic candidate for the ballot’s top office prevailed. Five times since, the top ballot candidate was the worst performing Democratic candidate for statewide office.

In baseball, it’s easier to score runs if the leadoff batter gets on. In elections, it’s easier for down-ballot candidates if the leadoff race is a win. No top-office Democrat has cleared even 45% — measured head-to-head against the Republican candidate – since Bill Clinton in 1996, the first year of Republicans’ ongoing sweep of statewide offices.

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