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Midterm Momentum Is All GOP’s

November Is Looking Grim For Democrats, And It Could Still Get Worse

by Charlie Cook, via, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2010

Whenever someone asks if the 2010 midterm elections will be “another 1994” it makes me roll my eyes. No two election years are alike — the causes, circumstances and dynamics are always different to anyone who takes more than a casual look.

But 1994, and for that matter 2006, were “nationalized” elections, elections where overarching national dynamics often trump candidates, campaigns, local political history and natural tendencies.

Often in these elections, inferior, underfunded or less-organized candidates and campaigns beat more amply funded and better-prepared candidates and campaigns.

The primary difference between this year and previous nationalized elections is that this one looks so bad for Democrats so early.

These kinds of years also see states and districts that normally fall easily into one party’s column inexplicably fall into the other’s hands.

There is no reason to believe that 2010 is not just as nationalized as 1994 and 2006 were, or for that matter 1958, 1974 and 1982. To be sure, the causes, circumstances and dynamics are different, but the trend line is the same for each. At least today it is.

Any Democrats who are content to throw Martha Coakley or her inept Massachusetts Senate campaign under the bus, as they did Virginia gubernatorial hopeful Creigh Deeds in November, should take a casual look at the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll [.pdf], conducted Jan. 10-14 among 1,002 registered voters with a 3-point error margin.

On the generic congressional ballot test, the two parties run even, 41-41 percent. This should be troubling for Democrats because this poll question historically skews in their favor. More significant was that among those voters with the most intense interest in this election (those who rated their interest as either 9 or 10), and the most likely to vote in a midterm election, Republicans held a 15-point lead, 50-35 percent.

This is the second consecutive month of huge GOP advantages among those voters most interested in the election. If this level remains constant, you can count on the Democratic majority in the House being toast this fall.

David Wasserman, the House Editor of the Cook Political Report, estimates, based on what we know today, that House Republicans will make a net gain of 25-35 seats. A month or so ago, he estimated a 20-30-seat pickup; a few months before that, 15-25.


The primary difference between this year and previous nationalized elections is that this one looks so bad for Democrats so early.


The last six months, since we began writing about impending Democratic problems in August, has been like watching a car wreck in slow motion.

ALL of the power and leverage is in YOUR hands right now. But that leverage will evaporate in November if you don’t use it before then.


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    • Edger on February 9, 2010 at 16:04

    post the whole thing I would, but it would violate copyright.

    Read the whole thing here…

    And let your reps and senators who are up for re-election in November that they can easily save themselves… by producing good progressive results in the next couple of months.

    Demand Universal Single Payer as the price of your vote? Don’t ask. Tell.

  1. …. I have a great idea.

    Why don’t we laugh derisively at the thought of actually implementing any of our platform policy planks, show them the grownups are really in charge, and do the exact same things that the Bush administration was doing for the past 8 years ?

    Worked for Karl Rove’s job security !

  2. The Democrats had control of both houses of Congress and the White House after 1992. Instead of pushing their agenda they decided to “seize the middle”. They helped push through NAFTA despite the labor unions threatening them that they wouldn’t turn out in 1994.

      The Democrats laughed off the labor unions…until the Democrats got creamed. It was another 12 years before they got back the House.

     Obama and the Democrats decided to “seize the middle” again.

    Once again the Democratic base is looking to abandon them.

     The only thing the Democrats have going for them is that the Republicans have already discredited themselves and have done nothing to show that has changed.

      Face it. The Democrats won in 2006 and 2008 only because the Republicans were so increadibly awful. That’s still the story today.

  3. mastered one thing:  “Snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory.”  

    If I were a psychiatrist or psychologist (which I’m not) I’d be tempted to say that the Democrats have a fear of success and will do everything they can to sabotage themselves if they get anywhere near success.  I think that winning both Houses of Congress and the WH has scared the bezezus out of them–because in their present circumstances they actually are expected to have some guts, take some risks, and–get things done.  

    This is just my opinion, but I think they’d be much happier in the minority–they’ve gotten used to being a minority, and it does have a lot of advantages for them:  The career politicos in Congress will probably keep their jobs, their salaries, benefits, and of course, their perks. They won’t be expected to get anything done–you know–all they have to say “we’d love to get that done, but we don’t have the votes”–and as a minority, people might actually believe them, and keep supporting them with votes & $$$’s, hoping that some day they’ll be in the majority. Though, on second thought, I sincerely doubt that people’s memories are quite as short as the Dems hope they are.

    If they aren’t actually trying to lose–then they must be astoundingly stupid.  


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