What Does It Mean?: Miss. Special Election (Pt. 3)
Thanks for responding to my e-mail. I know you're a busy, busy man.
Before we move on to the Obama and Tom Cole questions, let's stick with this "wave" topic for a moment. You wrote, "It's too early to predict a wave but something is going on in the water out there." I would agree, except we get paid to make highly speculative predictions, right? So here goes: Republicans will lose A LOT of seats in November unless they can figure out how to completely divorce themselves from President Bush's record and legacy, and if they can figure out some way to run more populist campaigns (like Democrats' constant drumbeat against "Big Oil") without completely abandoning the GOP's fundamental principles.
Can Republicans pull this off? It seems like for the GOP it may have to be every man for himself this November. Any centrally-managed campaign strategy emanating out of Washington appears unlikely to work out there in the hinterlands. After all, the Democrats who won in Louisiana and Mississippi did so by running away from many of their party's positions on things like guns and abortion, and they definitely didn't embrace Nancy Pelosi or other party leaders.
Now, on to Obama. Democrats are spinning that their wins in Louisiana and Mississippi prove that Obama won't hurt downballot, and that linking their candidates to the presumed nominee just won't work. But to play Devil's Advocate here: Didn't Travis Childers, the Mississippi winner, basically say he never met Obama? It's not like these Democratic candidates have been embracing Obama, they've just managed to avoid being successfully tied to Obama
So will Democratic candidates in tough districts welcome Obama in the fall? Or will they have to run away from him in order to remain viable?
May 14, 2008; 1:43 PM ET
Categories: What Does It Mean?
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