Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Democrat political tide-is lowering

As I expected, the tide is slowly beginning to turn where the race for control of Congress is concerned. If the numbers in the latest USA Today Gallup Poll are any reflection of the national reality, here is the scenario we can expect in November: Democrats will gain some seats, but not control of the House and perhaps not control of the Senate, as they were hoping. Just as in 1998, the Democrats will lose the election but claim that they won it because they gained some seats.

In fairness to the Democrats, this sort of thing is a common electoral tactic the world over- "we will lose the election but claim victory anyway."People are disenchanted with the administration, and the thing that a lot of the pundits on the Left don't seem to understand is that there is a real disgruntled attitude among conservatives and Republicans with the situation in Washington-this isn't some massive national shift to the Left.

I live in what is arguably the most Republican Congressional District in America. This district has not elected a Democrat for 126 years and it won't this year, either. The First was "Republican Red" long before the 1994 landslide. However, just because the area is so Republican (and over the years it has evolved into a very conservative district) doesn't mean that all is well in GOP-ville. You don't hear the fellas at the Sanitary Drugstore saying "man, this Iraq thing is really going well," when they stew over their morning coffee. It is not common to hear "wow, the price of gas is really tolerable." What is heard are things like "this federal spending is rediculous, it needs to be brought under control," or "I wish the government would get out of our business." These are things you expect to hear from conservative people, and often the complaints reek of one central theme: Congress and the President are not conservative enough.

The reason that a lot of people in Red States won't break down and vote for Democrats is not because they are satisfied with the present situation, but that they are not at all excited by the alternative. People do not feel that the core values of the Democratic Party (as a whole) are values that are shared by the "silent majority" in Middle America. People understand that we have a two-party system in this country whether we like it or not, and they have to make their choice based on which party best represents their long-term values and interests. For a lot of us "out here," that makes the Democrats a non-option.That is precisely why the Republicans will suffer some seat losses-but win the election.


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