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« Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 660 -- Texas Outperforms On Bankruptcies. | WILLisms.com | Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 662 -- Obama & His Congressional Enablers. »

Trivia Tidbit of the Day: Part 661 -- 2010 GOP Comeback?

My "Gut" Odds: 25%-

Republicans need to pick up 41 seats to take back the House of Representatives. There is a great deal of chatter around that possibility.

The somewhat left-leaning (but really great blog, graphically-speaking) FiveThirtyEight says it is a definite possibility:

It's still early--and there's a lot of scatter in those scatterplots--but if the generic polls remain this close, the Republican Party looks to be in good shape in the 2010.

P.S. Is there any hope for the Democrats? Sure. Beyond the general uncertainty in prediction, there is the general unpopularity of Republicans; also, it will be year 2 of the presidential term, not year 6 which is historically the really bad year for the incumbent party. Still and all, the numbers now definitely do not look good for the Democrats.

It is way too early to make any prediction, but my gut tells me that Democrats are going to lose a lot of seats in 2010. 40 seats? Probably not, but it is definitely possible. There are, after all, 55 seats that flipped from Democrat to Republican from 2004 to 2008:


Indeed, Larry Sabato believes it is possible for Republicans to retake the House in 2010:

Roughly three-fourths of the districts (42) voted Republican for president in at least one of the last two elections. Twenty-one districts voted for the GOP presidential candidate in both 2004 and 2008.


What ultimately happens in 2010 could depend on how closely the electoral backdrop next year resembles 1994. At this point, there are some strong similarities. Like Bill Clinton a decade and a half ago, Obama is an ambitious young Democratic president who has seen his poll numbers drop sharply in the opening months of his administration. And like Clinton, Obama has invested a good bit of his political capital into a massive effort to overhaul the nation's health care system. As in 1994, it is so complex an undertaking that foes are finding it much easier to pillory the project as "big government" than supporters are able to defend it as needed reform.

Yet will history necessarily repeat itself? Even on election eve in 1994, only the most optimistic Republicans were forecasting a GOP congressional takeover. The Democrats were largely blindsided.

My guess is that the media will pull a full-court press in favor of the Democrats, similar to what they did in 2006 and 2008. There is also still a lot of left-wing money that will be thrown at 2010, because if Obama loses a lot of seats or even all-out control of Congress, it will essentially mark his "Waterloo," as Jim DeMint would put it.

Chris Stirewalt believes independent voters are the key, and they are already turning on Obama:

For the first few months of the Obama administration, independents, who make up about 43 percent of the electorate, reflected overall public opinion in giving the president consistent approval ratings of about 60 percent. But now, unaffiliated voters are less positive than the overall electorate, which is holding steady at 51 percent job approval for Obama.

More shocking is that independent voters now favor a Republican-controlled Congress by a four-point margin and would overwhelmingly like to see their own member of the House replaced.

Those are the kinds of numbers you see before electoral hurricanes like 1966 or 1994. And if independents are already at that point after so recently enduring the shoddy performance of the previous GOP majority, it's a sign of real dissatisfaction. Democrats have grown very jittery about the congressional elections in 2010.

Michael Barone is more skeptical:

...the chances of the Republicans recapturing the House have to be rated now at well below 50%. But I think they’re not as negligible as I thought even a few weeks ago.

Newt Gingrich believes three things have created this new conservative opportunity:

1. The economy is so bad that people want straight talk about creating jobs. Since the American people believe, by 59 percent to 21 percent, that business tax cuts will create jobs better than government spending, this concern about jobs is becoming an increasingly anti-left phenomenon (the opposite of what the left expected).
2. The world remains dangerous and the Obama administration's confusion on fighting in Afghanistan, releasing terrorists and trying to punish those who have been defending America is beginning to arouse great anger among the national security wing of American life.
3. The radicalism of the Obama-Reid-Pelosi team has aroused a level of suspicion unseen in the last 40 years. The intense reaction to the president's plan to talk with students (something both Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush also did) is a reflection of the intense hostility to radicalism which is building in the American people.

I tend to remain skeptical about it, but I think one thing is abundantly clear: Democrats will lose dozens of seats in 2010. How many dozens will depend on just how organized the opposition to Obama/Pelosi/Reid really is, and how well our people can articulate positive conservative alternatives to the nation's problems.


Previous Trivia Tidbit: More Proof That Texas Leads: Bankruptcy Statistics.

Posted by Will Franklin · 24 September 2009 04:28 PM