The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


The Rundown

Does two make a trend?

By Ben Pershing
When reporters look for patterns worthy of coverage, they usually follow a rule -- three makes a trend.

Three or more similar examples are enough to merit a story. So what exactly does it mean that Republicans won governor's races Tuesday in two states that backed President Obama in 2008? Does two make a trend in this case? And what about the race in New York's 23rd district that supposedly heralded the rise of conservatives but instead just became a Democratic pickup? The morning-after analysis shows little consensus on the answers to those questions. The results surely matter, but no one can say yet quite how much.

The GOP wins in New Jersey and Virginia, Adam Nagourney writes, "put the party in a stronger position to turn back the political wave President Obama unleashed last year, setting the stage for Republicans to raise money, recruit candidates and ride the excitement of an energized base as the party heads into next year's midterm elections." Dan Balz cautions that "off-year elections can be notoriously unreliable as predictors of the future," but the results still "delivered clear warnings for the Democrats." Howard Fineman surmises that "the deep skepticism that the (shrunken) electorate showed toward Democratic candidates can't be interpreted in any other way than as a vote of not-quite-confidence in the man in the White House."

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Posted at 8:27 AM ET on Nov 4, 2009  | Category:  The Rundown
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"He would have one"
Sorry, should read won. Not enough coffee in my system, yet.

Posted by: kctaz | November 4, 2009 2:00 PM

Where is it written that it takes 3 to have a trend? I have never heard that one before.
Also, re NY 23, Hoffman ran as an Independent. He would have one if the idiots who voted for the Rhino after she dropped out had voted for him. However, they could have sent in their absentee ballot some time ago. I wonder, can you request a new ballot if someone drops out of the race and you voted for them?
Odd how NY 23 has become such a big deal for the MSM but Va. and NJ don't mean anything or set a trend.

PS What is with this "sixteen years" thing I am suddenly hearing lately re the GOP and Bush? vmonroe_valnesio mentions it above and I heard it on tv last night from a Dem as well. The Bush had the Presidency for 8 years and his Father for 4. That equals 12. The GOP had Congress from 1994 to 2006 which equals 12 years. Just wondering. I know there is no point in arguing with vmonroe_valnesio, BDS is beyond rational thought, but I don't get the numbers.

Posted by: kctaz | November 4, 2009 1:58 PM

The Obomanition has been unmasked. When you buy a pig in a poke you usually get the wrong end of the shaft. .

Posted by: cropsey71 | November 4, 2009 1:01 PM

Now that we know who Obama really is and he is clearly not the man he claimed to be in his campaign... He will go down as a dishonest Jimmy Carter, one term failed Presidency.

It's too bad he has to tarnish Jimmy Carter's name so. At least the former President Carter didn't lie to everybody, he was just seriously too liberal to have any economic sense or international relations understanding.

Obama knows what he is doing and is purposely using deceit to advance his Marxist agenda!

He will get his do in the next life.

Posted by: Obama_TRAITOR_in_Chief | November 4, 2009 10:45 AM

It's not mid-term. The mid-term elections will be next year. However, the extent to which the GOP succeeds during the mid-term elections will depend directly upon the Democrats. If the Democrats continue to be passive while the GOP continues to throw haymakers at them, then yes, the GOP will definitely take over the Senate and come close to taking over the House. All the relevant facts and figures show that mud-slinging works.

For Christians, we already have a passive person in the form of Jesus Christ. We don't need more in the White House and on Capitol Hill. But that’s what we got. Though well justified, these Democrats seem incapable of showing any outrage or anger seasoned with a hint of arrogance. Even though the GOP left a trail showing the totality of their incompetence, they are being permitted by the Democrats to prance around as if they won the elections last November.

The GOP got this country into two unnecessary wars, came up with a coalition of "ONE", in effect, to fight them, destroyed the country economically and for sixteen years did nothing to fix health care, giving the huge surplus, left to them by Clinton, to the rich in the form of tax cuts. What are the rich doing with the windfall? The evidence suggests that they are stashing it in Swiss Vaults.

Without apology, they (GOP) left a colossal mess. Yet, with all of this material on their laps, the Democrats can't make their case before the voters. If this ineptitude on the part of Democrats continues, then the GOP will once again rise to the top. Perhaps, they should.

Posted by: vmonroe_valnesio | November 4, 2009 10:41 AM

This is just the beginning. This is a rejection of the leftist agenda of this President. This is outrage at the Stimulus bill that stimulated the palms of leftist interest groups and did not provide the jobs promised. The Obama administration has lied and said they wanted transparency. In Bloomingrove, Texas the Stimulus bill provided $26,000 to replace the roof of a housing project. The roofer hired six people at 450 hours. The government site listed the jobs provided at 450. The roofer Mr. Gray kept calling to have it changed. This government website does not provide a true reflection of how this money was spent and wasted. This is not about jobs. People are hurting and these liberal Democrats want to push through this expensive horrific healthcare bureaucratic entitlement that is not about cost reform and everything about the take over of one sixth of our economy by the government. These liberal Democrats have destroyed our dollar and have created a debt that will burden our children and their children. Shameful is not the word. Criminal comes to mind.
We cannot afford these liberal politicians and we need to send them packing in 2010. They need to go home and find one of the jobs that the Stimulus supposedly provided. Good luck and don't let the door hit you as you leave which cannot be too soon for us.

Posted by: greatgran1 | November 4, 2009 10:35 AM

This is just a small step on a long road - had the Republican "leadership" stood up behind a true Republican in NY rather then a true turncoat, the New York citizens, and Congress, would have had more of a balance.

Posted by: us1156 | November 4, 2009 10:25 AM


Both Corzine and Deeds were exceptionally poor candidates. Corzine never connected with regular people and his failure to address high Jersey taxes sealed the deal. Deeds' shortcomings are well-known in this space.

Far more significant: Owens' victory in NY-23 and the splintering of the GOP by their grassroots Gestapo pitchfork people. If Levi Johnston hasn't already done in Sarah Palin, this should do it -- and, God willing, the results will deflate the gasbags Limbaugh and Beck.

On the positive side for the GOP, New Jerseyans have granted Chris Christie an exceptional opportunity to recast the party as reasoned and moderate. But Christie, a Bush "pioneer" and unabashed cheerleader during the Bush-Cheney Reign of Terror, should renounce his former political idol and embrace Libertarian positions on civil liberties and human rights issues.

He can start by reversing course on warrantless wiretapping, surveillance and cellphone/GPS tracking of innocent but "targeted" citizens -- the electronic backbone of a grassroots Gestapo that Christie knowingly enabled as a U.S. attorney.

Perhaps he can take some lessons from recent songs by his musical hero, Bruce Springsteen, whose lyrics scold those who have allowed "national security" to be used as pretext for an ideological purge.



See his first-person attack account in latest comments to this article: OR (if link is corrupted):

Posted by: scrivener50 | November 4, 2009 10:23 AM

The election yesterday flies in the face of what the main stream media and the Democrats have been telling the American people.

The American people have been trying to articulate that we are worried about deficits, bailouts, the national debt and increased taxes.

The Democrats and the media have mocked those who raise these concerns.

In the future they might well listen or the Democrats might find thmselves in the position that the Republicans faced in 2006 and 2008!

Posted by: mwhoke | November 4, 2009 9:03 AM

Is the Mid term election sweep by the Republicans indicative of results in 2012?


Posted by: usadblake | November 4, 2009 9:02 AM

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