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Doom and gloom among Democrats

In case you wondered how gloomy Dems are feeling about the party's prospects, the new Reuters poll, which finds Republicans poised for massive gains, also finds that more than a third of Democrats don't think Obama will be reelected:

In a sign that Obama has some work to do to improve his fortunes ahead of his 2012 re-election campaign, 52 percent of those surveyed did not think Obama will win re-election in 2012, the poll found. This included 34 percent of Democrats and 75 percent of Republicans.

Obviously there's a long way to go until 2012, but as a snapshot of the current attitude among Dems, that seems to show that Dems are sorely lacking in that old "yes we can" spirit.

By Greg Sargent  | November 2, 2010; 9:41 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, 2012  
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Comments

Woohoo!!! It's election day. Must be on everyone's minds right?

Now lets see what's on peoples minds on Google hot trends.

1.marine corps marathon
2.time change fall 2010
3.when is daylight savings time 2010
4.daylight savings time 2010
5.halloween quotes and sayings
6.trick or treat times
7.halloween parade nyc
8.denise borino quinn
9.when does daylight savings time end
10.rally to restore sanity
11.indiana unemployment
12.reformation day
13.when do we turn the clocks back
14.romans revenge lyrics
15.this is halloween lyrics
16.pumpkin pancakes
17.samhain rituals
18.happy halloween pictures
19.halloween games for kids
20.all saints day

Looks like the Colbert/Stewart Rally beat out elections. Oh wow. Not even in the top 20.

Looks like nobody cares except cable news and some blogs.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 2, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Could be a self-fulfilling prophecy. More polls on Obama's electability, other Dem politicians think it's an opportunity to step in for a primary challenge, so they challenge Obama, diverting resources to defend Obama (instead of attack Republicans) while at the same time dividing loyalties and creating resentments that will carry over into the general election, and Obama loses.

Because--I may have said that--it's rare that an incumbent president loses without deciding not to run, or facing a 3rd party challenge (primary or general, or both).

In polls like these, though, can people not tell the differences between predicting and actual outcome and what they hope will happen? 75%? 2 years out? Really?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Well, looks like the deep south is the only area with heavy precipitation.

That's worth at least 2% points for the Dems right because Democrats are inherently lazy or something and stay home in inclement weather.

At least that's what the village tells us every election.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 2, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Obama and his friends failed to sell the simple message that has to be sold prior to every election: you are better off now than you were x years ago. There were a lot of distractions, but if you got elected on a hope for change platform, you have to realize what that means.

You have to keep that hope for change alive and his mere presence in the White House was not and will not be enough to do that. Now Ds can argue that Americans are far better off than they were two years ago. They really are. But losing the message to focus on Republican failures and foolishness may cost Obama in greater measure than he thinks.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 2, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

What Democrats think generally about Obama's reelection chances now and whether these same Democrats would vote for him themselves are two very different questions. I believe Pres. Obama will easily be reelected.

Posted by: Maezeppa | November 2, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Under Tim Kaine, the DNC has been comatose. He appears to have learned nothing from the early losses in Virginia, New Jersey and Mass.

We need some leadership that is willing to go into relentless attack mode, and stay with it, instead of allowing the opposition to define us, without our leaders ever defining them.

John Boehner, for cripes sake!. If Tim Kaine and the DNC were not able to make that guy the poster child for long term corrupt Washington insiders, they are not capable of running a winning campaign for a candidate in an uncontested race. Clean house, and bring in people who are willing to go on the attack, and keep on taking it to the opponents. The DNC rarely attempted to frame the debate and capture the news cycles.

Mitch McConnell and John Boehner.

If you can not use their long history of reckless spending, without budget offsets, and their history of being in bed with legions of lobbyists, you do not belong in politics.

The time has come for President Obama to also end his efforts to be a Political Gandhi. The opposition wants him to keep on being just that, because they are free to attack him, and define him in negative terms, without having to ever pay a price for it.

White House and DNC. Either go on the attack or become political roadkill in 2012. Almost no one likes a willing punching bag. Voters like someone who is willing to take the fight to bullies, so the time has come for Democrats to do just that.

Posted by: Liam-still | November 2, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Greg:

"finds that more than a third of Democrats don't think Obama will be reelected"

2 years is forever in politics. In January of 2008 you probably couldn't have found 5 people who thought McCain could win the primaries. I don't think anyone should give two hoots for what people think will happen in 2012.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 2, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Kevin_Willis:

Obama's Next Worry: A Restive Left Flank
Every president who lost re-election in the last half-century has first been weakened by a primary fight.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704141104575588283239100518.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEADTop#articleTabs%3Darticle

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

I think this goes without saying....

It's Bush's fault.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 2, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

ScottC3:

"Key donors have told the White House that the president should decide for certain whether he's running for re-election by the end of December. Should Mr. Obama's approval ratings slip further next year, there's talk that some donors may call on him not to run, or promote an independent candidacy by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

It could go further. Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, a former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, told MSNBC in July that a primary challenge to Mr. Obama "is really possible," especially if he were to go back on his pledge to begin withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan next year.

A disgruntled peace candidate such as former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold or Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich could find the prospect of rallying disgruntled leftists too tempting to resist. All three men forswear any interest in challenging Mr. Obama, yet it's noteworthy that Mr. Dean is stepping up his speaking schedule around the country after the election."

It could happen (keep your fingers crossed ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

John Fund is being cautious though:

"In the aftermath of a disappointing 2010 midterm election, some liberals may follow the path of the tea party. Tom Streeter, the co-author of "Net Effect," a book on the lessons of Mr. Dean's Internet-driven 2004 presidential campaign, says tea party supporters "share with the Deaniacs a sense of being ignored by the powers that be, and an enthusiasm and energy in the feeling that they are striking back."

Progressives are still rankled by White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs's attack in August on "the professional left" for not supporting Mr. Obama sufficiently. David Sirota, a prominent blogger, says that liberals feel "one hundred percent" taken for granted by the White House.

Most liberals I spoke to don't support a primary challenge. Jane Hamsher, founder of Firedoglake.com, a leading liberal blog, is less categorical. She blames Mr. Obama for "appropriating the progressive message, and then not governing as one." She has always backed "a diversity of voices in the primary process as a sign of a healthy democracy."

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

And you libs thought that the TEA Party civil war within the GOP was messy ...

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad!

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

"And you libs thought that the TEA Party civil war within the GOP was messy"

And you Cons think the American people are fools. Watch out when average Americans wake up and realize they've been deceived all along by the GOP as they carry water for their corporate masters. That will be the uprising that really matters. The sooner the better.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 2, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

I felt Biden's "stop whining" message was particularly inspirational.

Saw Howard Dean arguing with Rick Santelli on Squawk Box this morning. It was a very good argument. They seemed to agree on one thing, that all next Presidents should be ex-Governors, so their behavior around budgets that must be balanced can be judged.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 2, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

@shrink2: "Obama and his friends failed to sell the simple message that has to be sold prior to every election: you are better off now than you were x years ago. There were a lot of distractions, but if you got elected on a hope for change platform, you have to realize what that means."

It's a different world now, but FDR won significantly in his first midterms, even though almost everybody was no better off or even worse off. However, he made a compelling case for his efforts. I'm pretty sure neither he, nor any Democrats in congress, ran away or tried to paper over what they had done or were doing as if they were ashamed of it. And, of course, the Republicans couldn't mount a coherent challenge, but FDR and the Democrats at the time continued to make a compelling case for their leadership.

Of course, I think FDR benefitted from something no president will benefit from now, and maybe never again. His opposition was scared of his popularity. Though they did attack, I don't think the Republicans at the time would have ever dreamed of the constant, non-stop attack the Republicans have mounted against Obama, because they would have been afraid of the blowback. And the Republicans are fortunate that the Democrats have been disorganized and ambivalent about what they've done, otherwise their total obstruction could have blown up in their face.

Point being, it's not just "are you better off now than 2 years ago?" but "do you think we're, collectively, the best you can do?" And, right now, I think the answers is that a hog's mess of whackadoodles (to use the standard Democrat nomenclature for right wing and rural politicians) would be better than the Democrats currently in office, in most places.

But I'd argue it's not so much about Obama, or HCR, etc., as it is specific things (I don't thing Angle would have a prayer, had Obama not gone out of his way to torpedo the Las Vegas tourism industry) and the Democrats unwillingness or incompetence regarding defending themselves and making their case. I think they whole, "Don't for the scary Republicans" strategy was wrong-headed. There's an implicit "Yeah, we totally suck, and all that hope and change stuff? Lies. All of it. But do you really want scary Republicans in charge? I didn't think so." taking-the-base for granted there.

But we'll see. There have been lots of polls, but it ain't over until the fat lady sings.

Race I'm most rooting for? Ruth McClung takes out Raul Grijalva. I'd also like to see Barney Frank handed his walking papers, but let's be realistic.

Who you guys rooting for to really pull it out?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 10:40 AM | Report abuse

"The sooner the better." wbg

But I've been waiting all my life for that.
You know, that book has not been written. Why something that seems so inevitable, so obvious, that just has to happen soon (your point) never does.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 2, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

All, great post by Krugman on why Dems were right to do HCR:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/11/why_dems_were_right_to_do_heal.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | November 2, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Joe Biden had a rally in Delaware last night and only 200 people showed up.

That is amazing.

Then Biden went to Vermont? Anyway, if only 200 people showed up to a rally with Biden, Christine O'Donnell may do better than we think.

Posted by: MyHairLooksFantastic | November 2, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Jake:

"It could happen (keep your fingers crossed ; )"

Don't get me wrong...I am hopeful. I just think talking about 2012 now is a waste of time.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 2, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

We'll see.

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

@JakeD2: "Every president who lost re-election in the last half-century has first been weakened by a primary fight."

And most of them in the previous century-and-a-half either declined, faced a primary battle, or actually didn't get their parties nomination. It's a very strong indicator. But if Obama faces a primary challenger, it makes it significantly more likely that he will lose than he will win.

I wonder how many first-term presidents who have been handed their walking papers were also non-governors?

That being said, I probably like Obama more than any other current Democrat politician that isn't also a blue dog. And if the 2012 election was between Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama, I'd probably vote for Obama. I think it's probably been a good thing that current circumstances were under the Democrats, rather than a McCain presidency (where McCainiacs would have had 2 solid years to sabotage Palin from every direction).

If it was Sarah Palin and Obama then, yes, I'd definitely vote Palin.

I just hope is that Chris Christie runs, and is elected president, in my life time. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

"Who you guys rooting for to really pull it out?"

Seeing Barney Frank go down (stop that!) would be fantastic.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 2, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Kevin

I'm really pulling for Alex Sink in FL, that Scott character has no business IMO running for public office and Patty Murray in WA is another one I'd hate to see lose. I also predicted last night that Reid squeaks one out over Angle. I'm not in love with Reid but Angle is just too far right to be taken seriously.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 2, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

"If it was Sarah Palin and Obama then, yes, I'd definitely vote Palin."

Careful...you don't want to send any of the libs here to the hospital, do you?

"I just hope is that Chris Christie runs, and is elected president, in my life time."

I am with you. I've come to like him quite a bit. He might have to drop a few lbs, though.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 2, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: " That will be the uprising that really matters. The sooner the better."

Wait until everybody wakes up and the realize that they are almost identical to me in every way. And they all say, "You were right all along! We will vote just like you! The scales have fallen from our eyes! Praise LBJeebus!"

This doesn't happen. Find your favorite and most ideal quasi-socialist European democracy and you will find folks who are still deeply dissatisfied and wondering when and anticipating the day when the sheeple finally wake up and realize that "x" has been all lies and deceit and "z" has been the one, true way all along!

It's hardwired into our brains. Even if outside circumstances reflected a very different reality, we'd still fall into some form of our customary dichotomous roles. Either attack the status quo (or most of it), or defending the status quo (or most of it). Those who disagree with us would either be intentionally evil or foolish dupes, long deceived, and those who agreed with us would be smart and enlightened (and we could lament together why more people don't wake up and agree with us).

Chop wood, carry water. Every day is an opportunity for small victories. And deep satisfaction from very small, yet important, things. Don't wait to give yourself permission to be happy until everybody in the world wakes up and finally "gets it", because that ain't happening. At least, chances are highly unlikely.

Don't just sit around waiting for the rapture, in other words.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Kevin_Willis:

I don't know.

What I do know is, starting this January -- or earlier if Reid and/or Pelosi abdicate -- the GOP will be passing spending cut bills left and right, so Obama can either veto those (proving once and for all that he's not for reducing the deficit) or HE can go along for the ride and sit in the back of the bus ...

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

@ScottC3: "I am with you. I've come to like him quite a bit. He might have to drop a few lbs, though."

Yup. We haven't had a fat president in years. But that wouldn't stop me. In fact, I'd love to see a bunch of skinny liberals pontificating on how risky it is to have a fat president, and keep on going on about how fat he is, thinking that that's endearing and effective while the majority of our overweight populace watches with grim and determined expressions. ;)

@lmsinca: "I'm really pulling for Alex Sink in FL, that Scott character has no business IMO running for public office and Patty Murray in WA is another one I'd hate to see lose. I also predicted last night that Reid squeaks one out over Angle. I'm not in love with Reid but Angle is just too far right to be taken seriously."

Not terribly familiar with the Patty Murray race, but I'm sympathetic with Alex Sink. Scott has much baggage, and his campaign could have taken the high road and let the text-message-at-the-debate "incident" speak for itself, but like an over-excited 4th grader who thinks they've just found a totally awesome putdown, they were everywhere saying it proved Alex Sink was deeply immoral. If I were in Florida, I'd probably vote a split ticket.

Naturally, I'm not worried about how far to the right Angle is, but I don't she's the best candidate. While I'd like to see Harry Reid handed his walking papers, I'd much prefer that he be ousted by someone like Ruth McClung (rocket scientist) or Sean Beilat (builder of robots). Sharron Angle, future power-broker of payback "juice", isn't nearly as exciting. She's like the Republican version of Harry Reid! Couldn't we have done better? ;)

@ScottC3: "Seeing Barney Frank go down (stop that!) would be fantastic."

Well, um. That was an interesting way of saying that. So, I'll just stand a few feet further to the right over here, okay? And you just stay there. And keep your hands were we can all see them. All right? Okay? Okay. ;)

Heh. Always punchy on election day.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

@ScottC "I don't think anyone should give two hoots for what people think will happen in 2012."

Agreed on both sides of the aisle. Talk of Obama being primaried or Palin running is nothing but we bloggers and pundits playing games...kind of like the huge growth in NFL fantasy football. It may be fun but it doesn't mean a thing.

Still it's fun to play and so IMHO...there are no real R leaders right now for 2012.
I think the R's will find somebody new...like N.J.'s Christie...I realize he's already getting mentioned but of course the focus still remains on Mittens and Palin...again IMHO I don't think either of these two get the nod. Although as a progressive I'd love to see either of them...ESPECIALLY Palin because they are so beatable. Christie is the R who scares me most at the moment...but as you point out Scott...2 years is eternity in politics.

Posted by: rukidding7 | November 2, 2010 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Jake, I think you need to pray harder for O'Donnell because surly that'll help.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 2, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

"Christine O'Donnell may do better than we think."

Do you mean you think she'll ONLY lose by 10-15 points instead of 20-25?

Posted by: rukidding7 | November 2, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Even if Ms. O'Donnell loses, it will still be a glorious night! I'll be back.

Posted by: JakeD2 | November 2, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

"Do you mean you think she'll ONLY lose by 10-15 points instead of 20-25?"

If she loses by only 10, I think the Dems are going to crushed in all the other close races across the country.

Posted by: NoVAHockey | November 2, 2010 11:48 AM | Report abuse

@NoVAHockey: "If she loses by only 10, I think the Dems are going to crushed in all the other close races across the country"

Bingo! I think you are exactly right. So, here's hoping O'Donnell loses by 10.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

If it was Sarah Palin and Obama then, yes, I'd definitely vote Palin.

I just hope is that Chris Christie runs, and is elected president, in my life time. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 2, 2010 10:49 AM |

................

You would actually vote for Quitter Palin to become President of the USA? She is a dangerous, and vindictive ignoramus.

Posted by: Liam-still | November 2, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

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