Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Is The Senate In Play? Yes And No

Most pollsters and political handicappers are predicting a veritable tsunami come November.Even the dinosaur media is predicting that the Republicans taking the House by a wide margin is a foregone conclusion, and according to pure numbers, the Senate is definitely in play.

Is it?

It is if you look at pure numbers. The Republicans now hold 41 seats and need 10 seats to pull it off. They're currently on track to pick up seats in Arkansas, Colorado, Indiana, Pennsylvania and North Dakota. They're slightly ahead in Washington and statistically tied in Illinois and Wisconsin. Assuming they win Washington and pick up either Illinois or Wisconsin, that gives them a gain of 7 seats...while losing none to the Donkeys.

The GOP also has a decent shot in Delaware, California and Nevada, and even Connecticut and West Virginia are long shots. Richard 'hey I was a war hero' Blumenthal has seen his double digit lead over former WWF exec Linda Mcmahon melt down to a mere 7 points and trending downward while Democrat governor Joe Manchin will be running against a well known John Raese for Richard Byrd's old seat in one of the reddest, anti-Obama states in the nation. So out of thirteen potential contests, they need to win 10,7 of which are pretty sure bets.

My main concern is not so much the quantity as much as the quality. If the GOP establishment merely manages to get a Congress elected that promotes the status quo, the Republicans will never be trusted with governing again - and rightly so.A third party will arise.

There will be a number of outstanding freshmen Senators in the new crop who have the potential to really turn things around. New faces like Marco Rubio, Mike Lee, Joe Miller, Pat Toohmey and others can help take the country back. But only if they're not overly hobbled by the GOP establishment and the accompanying RINOS.

Delaware is a good example of how this dynamic works. Mike Castle is a well known Republican face who's running for Joe Biden's old open seat.Right now,he leads the Democratic nominee Chris Coons by ten points and would be a sure bet to win the seat if he gets the nomination..

Castle is also fairly Left bent, which accounts for his being a Republican Congressman in a decidedly Blue state since 1993.He is a reliable vote for unrestricted abortion and supports embryonic stem cell research as well as cap and trade and the farcical and unconstitutional DISCLOSE act.

On the other hand,his challenger for the GOP nomination, Christine O'Donnell espouses fairly conservative principles, although she's never had a chance to act on them. She's run for the Senate 3 times previously and gotten beaten like a gong every time, as well as carrying some personal baggage relating to her finances. She also trails Democrat Chris Coons by 10 points in a potential matchup.

So therein lies the dilemma. Given the fact that in Delaware, Castle will likely win the nomination anyway, do conservatives try to pull of an insurgent victory with O'Donnell like they did in Alaska with Joe Miller - only with a far less bankable and able candidate? Or do they back the RINO, who will likely be a pain in the neck later on?

Ronald Reagan's old and wise dictum in these circumstances was that you back the most Conservative Republican who is likely to win. Sarah Palin seems to be using that strategy in endorsing Carly Fiorina in California..but the country was less divided then than it is now.

The biggest danger is that enough RINO's will continue to go along with Obama's poisonous agenda 9 or at least not combat it) to give him a natural tagline for 2012 - 'Look even Republicans agree with me.'

There's less danger of this in the House, simply because there are more bodies. But it's something to think about, when talking about what's in play and what isn't.

Lest I sound to pessimistic, on the plus side a number of good conservative Congressmen with the right leadership can easily create their own momentum.

We'll see.

(via memeorandum)

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louielouie said...

So therein lies the dilemma.

i see no dilemma.
americans are dumber than a sack of hair.
a typical delaware voter

Anonymous said...

All of that means nothing because we are still too far away from the election. Many things can happen between now and Nov 2nd. There is no way the Democrats will let this happen without resorting to dirty tricks. Perhaps an October suprise. Maybe massive voter fraud.

Freedom Fighter said...

Hi Louie,
Delaware has had serious economic probs recently, which is why the Bidens didn't hang on to their hereditary seat.I merely point out that one has to decide how far one is wiling to go in a Blue State to get someone in with an R after their name.

Hi Anonymous,
Yeah, there will be some of that,but not as much. The smaller turnout in a midterm makes it tougher to cheat.


Anonymous said...

You broached en passant the subject of a possible 3d party arising. This, in my opinion, could only occur successfully from within the existing seated parties in Congress. Eg, many of the American Whigs ( including Lincoln ) felt that they could not continue within the Whig party proper per se, &, thus, many of the already-seated members in the House & Senate formed a new party, the Rep party or GOP, whilst remaining in their seats. The Labour Party of the UK was born from the Lib-Lab elements ( trades-union supported members ) already seated in the UK's Parliament : certain MPs simply declared that they were affiliating with a newly-created party. ( The old Liberal Party eventually collapsed into a minor, ghostly 3d party. ) The Social Democratic Party of the UK was created in 1981 by a couple of sitting Labour members & a couple of former members which had become disgusted by their party's drift to the extreme left & the dominance of the trade unions. ( The SDP & the Lib Party ( the Whigs ) subsequently merged in 1988 into the Lib Dems & have formed a coalition gov with the Tories ( Conservatives ) in 2010.

My point is that a truly successful party would be founded only by already seated members of Congress. The new members sent to DC should be encouraged to be independent & to oppose any effort by the GOP leadership ( whom I do not trust ) to repudiate & spurn any corrupt, rotten back-room deals involving the funding of a single red cent for Zero's medical Dr Strangelove Rx for America. Zero might threaten to halt or to defer or to postpone moneys for Iraque or Afghanistan or for GOP objectives unless Zero received some financing for his wretched programmes -- legal extortion or blackmail. They must say no. If the GOP leadership essays to sneak a corrupt deal past them, they must be prepared to disobey, revolt, & walk out.

I'll be leaving on Friday for a business trip. Very quickly, here is reprise of a past meditation from about 2 months ago : The GOP must remind people of the consequences of the Dems' draconian med care alterations in the Autumn. At some point later this year, Congress will have to vote re the Medicare cuts. They might, for election purposes, temporarily continue with current funding, or they can face the wrath of a lot of old people immediately. As the Massachusetts Senatorial election demonstrated, this is the 1 issue which is the Achilles' heel for them. The GOP must publicise this vote & matter in any manner & fashion possible. Perhaps, they could copy the suffragettes & their methods. The congressional Republicans could conduct sit-ins & slow-as-snail walks through Washington to the Capitol building. After all, under Article 1, Section 6, they are privileged from any arrest in going to & returning from their House & Senate ( save for treason, felony, & breach of the peace -- but we're talking about walking in this case ). The media will sneer, but the people will cheer. This is the issue.

Have to prepare for Friday. Thank you for your blog. Ciao !

Respectfully, dragon/dinosaur