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Can Republicans Win Back Congress in 2010?



Republicans hope that their numbers in the chamber will grow in 2010. (Photo by Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post)

House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (Va.) said in a recent interview that Republicans retaking the majority is not entirely out of the question in the 2010 midterm elections.

"I'm very confident we will pick up seats midterm if we do the necessary work of finding good candidates," Cantor said. "I don't remove the prospect that we could take the majority back in 2010."

Is this simply spin from a House Republican leader who needs to say something to keep his members and the party's grassroots base engaged? Or is there a real chance for a Republican House in 2010?

The answer is, it depends.

To be clear, the strong probability is that Republicans will pick up seats in 2010 but will come up well short of the 40-seat gain they need to reclaim control.

It's a near certainty that Republicans will have a broader number of targets in 2010 than Democrats -- the silver lining in the dark cloud that has seen the GOP lose a whopping 54(!) House seats in the last two elections.

Those seat losses have come -- primarily -- in swing or even Republican-leaning seats and, in a few cases like Idaho's 1st district and Alabama's 2nd district, districts that strongly favor the GOP.

And so, there should be some bounce back for Republicans as seats that were caught up in the Democratic waves of the last two elections return to form.

"In the game of campaign politics, if you aren't playing to win then you are in the wrong business," said National Republican Congressional Committee communications director Ken Spain. "It is very early in the cycle, but we are already seeing signs of improvement."

A look at the number of competitive races listed for each side by the Cook Political Report (Fix alma mater) confirms the opportunity for Republicans. All tolled, 59 Democratic seats make the Cook competitive race chart while 40 Republican seats are included; among those seats rated as "toss ups" or "leans" -- the two most competitive categories -- Democrats have 23 seats to Republicans' five.

History, too, is on the side of the GOP. In all but one of the midterm elections held in the first term of a president since 1970, the party out of the White House has picked up seats. (The lone exception was in 2002 when House Republicans netted eight seats -- an election shrouded by the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.) In those other five elections, the average seat loss for the president's party has been 23 seats -- although that average is skewed somewhat by Republicans' massive 54-seat pickup in 1994.

Jen Crider, communications director at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, acknowledged the difficult landscape but pointed to venture capitalist Scott Murphy's (D) likely victory in a New York special election as a sign that there is no evidence that the GOP is on the comeback trail in the House.

Does this mean a Republican-controlled House is impossible in 2010?

No, because the crisis state of the economy makes the political atmosphere even more uncertain than unusual.

But, today, it is right to describe a 40-seat Republican pickup -- given President Obama's popularity ratings, the likely fundraising edge for Democrats and the lack of a cogent Republican message -- as a decided long shot.

By Chris Cillizza  |  April 21, 2009; 2:20 PM ET
Categories:  House , Republican Party  
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Comments

Not a chance. What's the platform?
The pro-torture party? Global warming is fake? Say no to Evolution? Never talk to N. Korea or Iran or Venezuela?
Don't teach sex education? Never regulate Business. Privatize Social Security? Let religious extremists run the Government?

Republican policies have made a mess of the Economy, of Foreign Policy, of Education, the Environment. Everything Bush and Co. touched turned to cr*p. Did Bush and Republicans make America safe? Look around. The trashed the place.

Posted by: thebobbob | April 24, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

And now, for dottydo and the rest if the untrained;

Breach of classified information is NOT treason. It may be a felony, but it mostly ends up grounds for firing people, when, due to their failure to properly handle classified information they lose their security clearance.

The authority to classify and declassify documents is set out in various regulations and public laws. I am quite sure that, ex officio, the Vice President does not have ANY classification, or declassification authority. When he is functioning as an adviser to the President, his job may cause him to generate classified material, but the actual authority for that classification is whatever department he is working with that has classification authority.

Misclassification, and especially overclassification can be a crime, either misdemeanor or felony depending on many criteria, but classifying ANY document or other piece of evidence to conceal illegal activity IS a felony. This provision was strengthened after Watergate.

The President of the United States has broad power to declassify information, under several public laws. He does NOT need the CIA directors permission, and except for crypto and certain other special material is more or less free to declassifiy about any thing he wants.

The material on torture that has come out so far appears on its face to be material classified in order to conceal illegal activity in CIA, in the White House, and in DOD under the direction of someone reporting to the President, and was probably of such nature that the classification was a felony.

Nothing that has been released so far would appear to be the kind of compartmented information that the President lacked the absolute authority to declassify and release.

By the way, selling sensitive war materiel, like Hawk Missiles, together with spare parts, maintenance manuals, and theoretical support to a nation with whom we are technically at war IS certainly treason, and Elliot Abrams, Oliver North, John Poindexter, George H. W. Bush, and Ronald Reagan ARE quite probably traitors, but that is a different story.

Posted by: ceflynline | April 23, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

The answer is no, also there is no Santa Claus and no Easter Bunny, no federal judge to stop the count, No Ken Blackwell to rig the voting machines, just Rush, Rove and a few reves left.

Posted by: SWAMPYPD | April 22, 2009 8:35 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to associate myself with bsimon's comments of 9:58 and add that there is an uncanny similarity to The Fix's reliance on old political nostrums to Wall Street's tired, repetition of investment advice that have left so many clients bereft of savings to meet their goals for future financial independence. It might do The Fix some good to think outside the box occasionally, or at least to consider that a reset button of sorts has been pushed, necessitating new thought and logic instead of trotting out the old standards which no longer apply.

Posted by: optimyst | April 22, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Analysis after analysis, statement after statement, scenario after scenario, the song remains the same: GOP success is predicated on something really bad happening to our country.

That's what "God's Own Party" (scary thing: the poster who said that might have actually meant it) is putting out there. Do they have the superior candidates? They do not. Do they have anything resembling a coherent, viable alternative to the policies of the President and his party? They do not. Do they have a vision for this nation that is built on values other than hatred, exclusion, fear, servitude to the wealthy, and boiling, irrational rage? They do not.

So what does the Party of God have? Pathetic PR stunts intended to manipulate the rubes, and the obscene hope that something terrible happens to our country, so they can dance around, orgasmically cry out, "I told you so!", and cruise to victory by exploiting the worst instincts of the electorate.

Hoping for something bad to happen to America so they can regain control. That's not just sad. That's terrifying.

But not surprising. Not at all.

Posted by: WaitingForGodot | April 22, 2009 2:01 PM | Report abuse

The GOP was running in very favorable circumstances in recent elections. The shoe is most definitely on the other foot now. Sure, a Dem incumbent might look weak on paper, but the GOP needs to actually run a decent challenger to win such a seat. On the one hand, there's going to be the midterm bump for the GOP and more chances. On the other hand, the Dems are going to have advantages in terms of message clarity from their bully pulpit position, fundraising high ground and bigger base. Neither side is a massive favorite. Expect a fairly small swing. If the government looks like it's been doin' good, expect small Dem pickups. If the government's performance is still rocky, expect small GOP pickups.

The missing element in GOP strategists calculations is that they expect an Obama fiasco. That's very, very unlikely. Katrina has raised the standard of fiasco and the Dems will be hard pressed to top that. There's also Iraq, which should be back in the news for the last stages of withdraw come 2010, another fiasco that the Dems will be hard pressed to top.

No matter how big the Dems screw up, it's going to look small. And no matter how big they succeed, it's going to look small. Either way, next election is for penny stakes.

Posted by: theamazingjex | April 22, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

This is the country that reelected Bush in 2004, and then elected Barack Obama. Anything is possible. It's far too early to speculate.

Posted by: nodebris | April 22, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

verasoie asks
"how can you support the notion that "it's a near certainty that Republicans will have a broader number of targets in 2010 than Democrats" when the demographic and political tide continue to improve the Democrats prospects?"

That's a reasonable question that The Fix should pursue. A known shortcoming of his analysis is that his model predicts future electoral results based on past performance. He doesn't seem to include a variable for demographic changes among the electorate in a given district - not to mention changes among the actual voters. So what happens is a 'reliable' district for one party sees an 'upset' win one year. Two years later that freshman holds on 'despite' being of the 'wrong' party. Only after a couple election cycles does the district get flagged as perhaps having changed.

Having said that, the historical record is interesting, and shouldn't be ignored when analyzing the prospects of candidates in the next election. But such analysis should include variables such as party affiliation numbers, and approval ratings for each party's leadership.

Posted by: bsimon1 | April 22, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Chris, how can you support the notion that "it's a near certainty that Republicans will have a broader number of targets in 2010 than Democrats" when the demographic and political tide continue to improve the Democrats prospects?

It is highly probably that the Republicans have not hit rock bottom yet, and will continue to lose seats as their unnatural, unholy alliance (religious right, fiscal conservatives, gun enthusiasts) continues to splinter.

Posted by: verasoie | April 22, 2009 12:59 AM | Report abuse

"My reference was to Republican victories in the Senate races in 2002 and 2004. In race after race, the Republican candidate won. Don't forget that."

Oh, yeah. I guess in those years they did.

Don't worry, once the economy is fixed, Republicans will find gay bashing and race baiting to be effective again.

Posted by: DDAWD | April 21, 2009 11:37 PM | Report abuse

douglaslbarber - No, I just remember the one that both of us inhabited prior to 2006. You know. The one where a Vietnam vet who lost limbs in service to our country had his patriotism questioned and lost his seat in the Senate (Ga).

DDAWD - As a former Minnesota resident (Macalester '86), I fully support having two senators. Up to now, (ex) Sen. Coleman was justified in pursuing legal options. I will remind you that Bush-Gore went to the U.S. Supreme Court. I would hope that (ex) Sen. Coleman doesn't go that far. However, he (and his voters) have that right.

My reference was to Republican victories in the Senate races in 2002 and 2004. In race after race, the Republican candidate won. Don't forget that.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | April 21, 2009 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Here is an utterly ridiculous statement:

Republicans are committed to fair elections, and when they lose, they are committed to working with the winning party to forge policies that will be beneficial to Americans.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 9:59 PM | Report abuse

"As for me, I support the decision NOT to prosecute, though there will be an obligatory waiting for the atty gen to weigh in. "

I would like to see Bush or Cheney prosecuted. I just don't think the DoJ has the goods on those two people. I'm glad they chose not to go after scapegoats and fall-guys.

Posted by: DDAWD | April 21, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

"Digital voter - You weren't paying attention. First off, the Republican party made significant gains in the U.S. Senate. There is no redistricting involved in these seats. Republicans won the close races. "

Well, there isn't much that's more significant than cutting Minnesota's representation in half.

Posted by: DDAWD | April 21, 2009 9:52 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade wrote, "the Republican party made significant gains in the U.S. Senate".

You must be living in a universe which is an alternative to the one I inhabit.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Digital voter - You weren't paying attention. First off, the Republican party made significant gains in the U.S. Senate. There is no redistricting involved in these seats. Republicans won the close races.

You're partially right about the Texas House seats. There were gains, but the previous map favored Democrats. Texas has been reliably Republican, but had an oddly disproportionate amount of Democrats in the House. The rest only goes to show the importance of winning at the state level. The political version of winners writing the history.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | April 21, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

DigitalVoter wrote, "Even if Republicans win a bunch of seats in 2010"....

which is equivalent to, "Even if I roll snake eyes twelve times in a row"

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Touché, Jake! Must be bad weather for golfing today.

As for me, I support the decision NOT to prosecute, though there will be an obligatory waiting for the atty gen to weigh in. Mistakes, serious mistakes, were made in my view. Criminalizing this is as petty as impeaching Clinton (high water mark of Republican hubris).

The legitimate reason to go after Clinton was lying to the prosecutor. His proper response to the special prosecutor, when asking about sexual affairs, was go to h*ll. If the House wanted to up the ante after that, so be it.

Cheers and buh-bye,

Paul (45 years old today!)

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | April 21, 2009 9:17 PM | Report abuse

One of the primary reasons Republicans won 8 seats in 2002 is that they CONTROLLED REDISTRICTING IN OHIO, MICHIGAN, PENNSYLVANIA AND FLORIDA. (Yes, I am shouting).

The Tom Delay 2004 redistricting in Texas resulted in 6 more seats in Republican hands.

The Gubernatorial elections in 2010 will dictate what much of the 2012 congress looks like. Even if Republicans win a bunch of seats in 2010, losses in the Statehouse will be the main reason that retirements are announced before the 2012 elections and familiar faces are voted into retirement.

Posted by: Digital_Voter | April 21, 2009 9:12 PM | Report abuse

ceflynline wrote, among many other excellent things, "the long knives are already being put to the stone to make them even sharper in pursuit of the hides of RINOs".

Yowsa. I love good polemical prose and even better I love a good political claim. You go!

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Your answer was in the Column immediately above this one. The Republican Party looked at its losses in 2006 and 2008, considered what they might have done wrong to lose so many seats, and decided that the country didn't understand them, because they weren't conservative enough. If the country were as conservative as the republicans, that might make sense, but since the republicans judge the world based on just who they are willing to talk to, and they refuse to talk to anyone who is insufficiently consercative, they have a very skewed view of the electorate.

If the Republicans keep opposing everything barack Obama proposes to get the economy back on track, they risk losing big if he succeeds, and almost as big if his success is seen as less than it might of been had the republicans stayed out of the way.

The Republicans will NOT get "good candidates" because the long knives are already being put to the stone to make them even sharper in pursuit of the hides of RINOs. once the great white hunters finish their purge of anything that smacks of moderation or progressivism, they will face three quarters of the nation divided into two camps, either of which will be bigger then they. The Left will probably have the plurality needed to gain seats, but the center will have to hold their noses to vote, or stay home, or find a new party.

It defies logic that the center hasn't already gone looking for that other party, so it must be that, for now, the center has gone with the current Prez and his party. If he keeps them happy the republicans repeat their failures in '06 and '08, and lose another 20 or so seats. If he loses them, they go off on their own, and the republicans become one with the Know Nothings, Whigs, Federalists...

Only some great disaster would give the current Republican Party any real chance.

I would end, "But please don't tell them that," but should anyone do so, he will just find himself read out of the Party with the rest of the center.

A minority Party WILL probably gain seats in Congress next year, but it will be the American Reform Party, or its successor.

Posted by: ceflynline | April 21, 2009 8:31 PM | Report abuse

With regard to the midterm elections, if I were a professor and I assigned a student to research this, if he only went back to 1970 I would fail him.

1934 was an important year, Franklin D. Roosevelt's first off-year election. So was 1832 - Andrew Jackson's 1'st off-year election (his was a realigning election too, though I'm not sure any living historian being interviewed by mainstream media remembers that fact).

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 8:14 PM | Report abuse

dottydo wrote, "If the charge of treason is brought by the military and CIA on Obama and Emaunuel for puting Intel on line without release of declassification, then Dodd would stand to be VP for Biden."

But that's preposterous. Dick Cheney is not "the military and the CIA", he is just one dirty little old man who's not in very good health.

I can assure you based on personal acquaintance and life experience that the officer corp of the US military was in large part very uncomfortable with what I would characterize as the "Bush-Cheney war crimes", and I think the CIA spoke for itself when President Obama addressed them the other day.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

I can see that national Democrats, who really like Dodd, are trying to speak highly of him in order to improve his image with voters in CT. It's not going to work

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

As for Dodd, he's going to be the one Democrat defeated (either in primary or general), unless he retires. That's one of the few bright spots for the Republicans

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 7:37 PM | Report abuse

That's a very vague definition of treason. I don't believe what Bush has done qualifies as treasonous against the United States, but certainly rises to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors.

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Mark1000,
Release without declassification, and with the head of the CIA saying not do it, is treason.

Standing rules must be followed for protocal reasons.
They didn't follow any protocal and are Benedict Arnolds.

End of topic.

Posted by: dottydo | April 21, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

Dodd really should rise up and call for Impeachment on Obama (since he was inappropriately blamed for the Obama embeded loophole)Dodd could hold some will of the people to see the Party continue if they begin to act like Americans for a change.

If the charge of treason is brought by the military and CIA on Obama and Emaunuel for puting Intel on line without release of declassification, then Dodd would stand to be VP for Biden.

Independent is the new ruling class, with Napolitano slapping anyone on a Republican registration on her terrorist list.

Biden placing a team and a cabinet would be rereshing as the Constitutional Republic regains it'self.

Posted by: dottydo | April 21, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

The comments of Cantor tell the story. Good Candidates will only be sales people. Ask any salesman, if the product is not good you cannot sell it. This is the problem of the GOP. They need to change policies. Then they can get good candidates to espouse them.

Posted by: guytaur1 | April 21, 2009 7:17 PM | Report abuse

If you want to have a serious discussion about charges against Bush, Cheney, and others (even though this blog is not about that) I'll have one

I strongly approve of Obama's decision to release the memos and even stronger his statement today that Bush Administration officials should be held accountable. This is what did he know and when did he know it, and when we truly need our media to investigate. Whoever knowingly allowed torture methods should be prosecuted, all the way to the highest levels of government

This also wasn't Bush and Cheney's only criminal offense either

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

jjedif wrote, "the American people do have the "genius" of electing a new government to bring about change and then almost immediately hamstringing it", and offered the example of Bill Clinton.

Bill Clinton was to Ronald Reagan as Dwight Eisenhower was to Franklin D. Roosevelt. That is to say, he was the politician from the opposition party who "ratified" the main tenets of the game-changer who went before him.

Ike ratified Social Security and any number of other things. Bill Clinton ratified the Reagan claim that the "era of big government is over".

The American people tire of one party government after about three presidential terms, I'd say. But when someone has really changed the rules of the game, like Roosevelt and Reagan did, when you get that change of party, you get a pale imitation of what you already had.

On the other hand, when a major party realignment is in its first blush, you can expect the American people to stand by it for about three terms.

In the present case, that would be two for Barack Obama, and one for someone else. If it's Joe Biden I'm shutting down all electrically powered devices capable of beating my ear starting in 2012 and ending in 2016.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

The Republican party has so blindly voted for legislation that has hurt so many of even their own consituents, that all the posturing in the world, and all the regular pattern of lies and misdirection that they like to use will not help them.

Here is an example of a "Good Republican's" voting record.

Voted NO on repealing tax subsidy for companies which move US jobs offshore. (Mar 2005)
Voted NO on $52M for "21st century community learning centers". (Oct 2005)
Voted NO on $5B for grants to local educational agencies. (Oct 2005)
Voted NO on shifting $11B from corporate tax loopholes to education. (Mar 2005)
Voted NO on funding smaller classes instead of private tutors. (May 2001)
Voted NO on funding student testing instead of private tutors. (May 2001)
Voted NO on spending $448B of tax cut on education & debt reduction. (Apr 2001)
Voted NO on tax incentives for energy production and conservation. (Jun 2008)
Voted NO on addressing CO2 emissions without considering India & China. (May 2008)
Voted NO on removing oil & gas exploration subsidies. (Jun 2007)
Voted NO on $3.1B for emergency oil assistance for hurricane-hit areas. (Oct 2005)
Voted YES on promoting free trade with Peru. (Dec 2007)
Voted YES on free trade agreement with Oman. (Jun 2006)
Voted YES on implementing CAFTA for Central America free-trade. (Jul 2005)
Voted YES on establishing free trade between US & Singapore. (Jul 2003)
Voted YES on establishing free trade between the US and Chile. (Jul 2003)
Voted YES on extending free trade to Andean nations. (May 2002)
Voted YES on removing common goods from national security export rules. (Sep 2001)
Voted YES on permanent normal trade relations with China. (Sep 2000)
Voted YES on expanding trade to the third world. (May 2000)
Voted NO on negotiating bulk purchases for Medicare prescription drug. (Mar 2005)
Voted NO on allowing patients to sue HMOs & collect punitive damages. (Jun 2001)
Voted NO on raising the minimum wage to $7.25 rather than $6.25. (Mar 2005)
Voted YES on killing an increase in the minimum wage. (Nov 1999)
Voted YES on defunding renewable and solar energy. (Jun 1999)
Voted YES on approving a nuclear waste repository. (Apr 1997)

http://www.ontheissues.org/senate/Kay_Bailey_Hutchison.htm

Posted by: david771 | April 21, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

The American people do have the "genius" of electing a new government to bring about change and then almost immediately hamstringing it but voting in the opposition. E.g., from 1994 to 2000, Bill Clinton was essentially a lame duck thanks to this stupid move by the American people.

On the other hand, Dems like Clinton do have a knack for self-inflicted wounds that favor their own demise. I would love to see Nancy Pelosi booted before she sticks her foot in her mouth again and single-handedly brings the Republicans back to power in Congress.

But if we make the mistake of letting the Republicans back into a share of power in 2010 it may well be the end of our existence as a free and democratic nation. The Republican Party is now firmly anti-democratic and anti-republican, it is essentially a pro-dictatorship party. E.g., the Republican administration managed to appoint many judges who are anti-democracy, which means even when Democrats control Congress and the White House, they don't actually rule the nation. The selection (not election) of Bush as president is proof of that. And if the Republican Supreme Court of Minnosota SELECTS Norm Coleman as senator, that will be an ominous sign.

Posted by: jjedif | April 21, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Mark1000:

It's simply phase 3 of Operation CHAOS ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Jake, I think everyone here can see right through what you're doing. Just go away and go back to Drudge

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

By the way, I have a little sermon for those Democrats who may be on the road to Hell for whatever reason (too much fried chicken, not enough arugula, whatever). Repent. If you are actually a Democrat in Hell when Dick Cheney, Rush Limbaugh and Bill Kristol arrive, part of your eternal punishment will be never to know that you've been joined by those miscreants.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

VG - I think just the fact that Jake is running that impeach Obama BS shows the Republicans are about as far away from dropping the us versus them theme as you can get

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Well, if you Dems don't care whether Cheney is prosecuted or not, fine by me.

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 6:40 PM | Report abuse

If by "congress" we mean both House and Senate, and if the Pennsylvania senate race is any indication, here's my guess how this will play out:

Very conservative core republicans of the Toomey stripe will either unhorse moderates of the Specter stripe, or damage them so badly with the base as to make them unelectable.

Come November, your very conservative core republicans, or your damaged moderate republicans, will lose general election.

Democrats will gain seats, confirming that 2008 was a realigning election akin to 1932 and 1980.

Further prediction: Ronald Reagan will be held in lower esteem in 2016 than he was in 2008, by those who still remember or study him by then.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

"Give us a break with that impeach Obama nonsense Jake. This blog is not about that, go post on redstate.org"
Posted by: Mark1000

Nice try, Mark -- but isn't interested in rational, intelligent dialogue. Instead, he's still just mad the GOP isn't running the show any longer. Well, to quote an old high school line: "Too bad, so sad."

Posted by: vegasgirl1 | April 21, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Give us a break with that impeach Obama nonsense Jake. This blog is not about that, go post on redstate.org

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

It's time to IMPEACH OBAMA for failing to prosecute Cheney! If Articles of Impeachment won't force Obama's hand, then maybe the NEXT President will:

http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/node/41872

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

VeganGirl - I think it's going to take several more election cycles before the Republicans drop the us vs them theme. It's just Republican red meat

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

There is one and only one way that Republicans win congress in 2010. You'll know it's coming if you see Barack Obama with both feet in his mouth for longer than 30 days at a stretch.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | April 21, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse

"This country is against socialism, communism. marxism, fascism, so for sure, we have to throw these bums out..."

Um, poster: You do realize that these political systems do not work together, right?
You really should take a political science course (or turn off the talk radio for an hour), as posts like this just make you sound very, very stupid.

As to the question: Yes, the GOP could -- but it has to drop the "us vs. them" mentality that has turned off so many moderates and independents.

Posted by: vegasgirl1 | April 21, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

of course the republicans will stack congress in 2010-the people see how they were fooled and where we are headed. This country is against socialism, communism. marxism, fascism, so for sure, we have to throw these bums out.

Posted by: sgtdave | April 21, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I think it is worth mentioning that usually the minority party reclaims seats by having ideas and proposals...not Glenn Beck. If the GOP want to regain some traction they better come up with something better than gay marriage or their extremely hypocritical arguments for fiscal responsibility. The latter won't start wooing voters until people forget 2000-2008 and the $5 trillion they spent on nothing.

Posted by: maurban | April 21, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

For all those who don't think the Republicans can win back Congress, how about this: I am (honestly) willing to support impeachment of Obama if he doesn't turn Cheney over for prosecution. Will any of you sign a petition for that or not?

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Here it is again:

http://www.iwar.org.uk/homesec/resources/olympic-security/romney.htm

"The after-action reports we received from Atlanta, and the lessons that were passed on to us by the public safety community, indicated that many of the problems in Atlanta reflected how slow we were as a nation to begin to recognize that terrorism was becoming a security issue inside the United States. When Atlanta began preparing for the 1996 Games, there had not been a successful foreign terrorist attack on US soil. Then, in 1993, the first World Trade Center bombing happened, and most of us heard of Osama Bin Laden for the first time. Not long thereafter, Timothy McVeigh stunned us all by his brutal attack on innocent people in Oklahoma City. Meanwhile, in Japan, terrorists used Sarin gas in the subways – showing how easy it was to wreak havoc and death in what had previously been regarded as a safe urban area. The reports we received indicated that with each new incident, the planners would develop ways to prevent and respond to these types of attacks. However, the planning effort faced an incredible obstacle due to the dozens and dozens of federal, state and local law enforcement and public safety entities involved in Games security and safety – with no clear command and control structure for Games planning. There was relatively clear understanding of who was in charge after an incident occurred – but there was no structure establishing who was in charge of planning for Games safety and preventing a terrorist incident from happening."

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Scrivener50 is but mad north-northwest. When the wind is southerly, he knows a hawk from a handsaw.

But this act is getting old.

Posted by: mattintx | April 21, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, EarlC, for that "answer" (although I don't recall asking you any "question"). I hope you read the Romney thread wherein I gave you his sworn testimony on domestic terrorists.

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

To answer JakeD, Disaster did hit for the last 8 years. We Americans went to the polls in record numbers and almost 70 million of us voted the party of disaster out of office.

2010 will tell the tale about whether Americans will chicken out on the march into the future with our heads held high or retreat in fear. The rightwingnuts hope that fear will take over and then they can regain power and finish balancing their inflated checkbooks.

The party of disaster also shows us that our votes are not safe. Minnesota cannot get their second senator thanks to endless vote tallying, something that didn't want in Florida.

Posted by: EarlC | April 21, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Assuming that Gallup knows anything about polling, the GOP will be lucky to keep the number of seats they already have. The problem is they have nothing to offer. They are against everything except lower taxes and inactive government at a time when people don't feel that strongly about taxes and want to the government to actually do something.

Posted by: cdierd1944 | April 21, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Overall I think Cillizza is missing the story here. The question is not whether or not the GOP takes the majority (b/c that's an obvious "NO").

The question is will the Democrats annihilate the Republicans or will the Republicans play some successful defense. Write a story on that

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Dear Secretary Napolitano. It appears there are some glitches in your software at the "Fusion Center" in Newtown, PA. For instance, you are only catching a subset of scrivener's posts (see his post on this thread at April 21, 2009 5:01 PM for an example of one that got through). Other examples can be found on nearly every post of the political blogs here at the Post.

Posted by: bsimon1 | April 21, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

hisroc:

They are not blocking his posts -- he's just imagining that too -- I hope you are going to the next TEA Party July 4th!

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

We really, really, need a third party... All the spin coming from both party's flacks leaves me nauseous...

dr. o

Posted by: ad4hk2004 | April 21, 2009 5:08 PM

*************************************

dr. o,

I could not agree more. Neither party has the moral authority to rule anymore. All incumbents of both parties need to go.

Posted by: hisroc | April 21, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

There were moments in Bush's presidency when he did get a bounce up of a few points here or there (i.e., Saddam, reelected, Roberts on SC) and you'll see this in many negative slope graphs. But it never shot up significantly like it did after 9/11, and never bucked the overall downward trend of Bush's presidency

As for Obama, he doesn't need to have an 88% approval. In fact, such support is lofty and emotionally based. I'm content with the 63% where he's settling

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Unless the nation takes a serious turn to the right, I doubt Republican gains will be significant enough to win a majority. The conservative ideology and supply-side economics has now run its course and until Republicans can come up with significant new policies they have little appeal to mainstream voters.

Posted by: lhettinger1 | April 21, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

No the thugs won't take back congress. Come on, CC. Not a chance.

Posted by: drindl | April 21, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Janet,

Please stop blocking Scrivener50's postings. His paranoid rantings are the best comedy relief that I get all day. I have this mental imagine of some guy sitting at a computer in his parents walk-out basement with a tinfoil lined baseball cap on his head.

Posted by: hisroc | April 21, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Mark1000:

Don't forget that there was just enough "refill" after Saddam was toppled. I would bet you that Obama NEVER sees 88% even if we have another 9/11 attack.

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

rharring:

They stopped Dawn Johnsen.

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

We really, really, need a third party... All the spin coming from both party's flacks leaves me nauseous...

dr. o

Posted by: ad4hk2004 | April 21, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

In regards to Bush's approval, I believe he is almost completely unique in how it unfolded during his presidency, so you can't compare it to Obama.

He started off averaging around the 50/50 mark for his first 8 months, a little above it to start and below it by August. Then, his numbers shot up to 88% after 9/11, and for the remainder of his presidency, went steadily down with the public across his two terms. It was like a pitcher of water being slowly poured out

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

ATTENTION: DHS Secretary Napolitano


It appears that your "fusion center" in Newtown, PA is censoring my attempted posts to The Washington Post's political blogs.

The article linked below explains.

Could you please look into this? Perhaps someone didn't read the memo.

Thanks.

"Scrivener"


http://nowpublic.com/world/govt-fusion-center-spying-pretext-harass-and-censor

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | April 21, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

So what has the GOP done in the last 80 days to clean up their image from the last 8 years? NOTHING. Their winning anything in 2010 is just a big pipe dream. When your coming out tea parties feature speakers are the same people that caused this mess it shows just how clueless they are. And when their star Jindal doesnt even use his real first name and got his Bobby name from the Brady Bunch, shows just how bad off the GOP is........

Posted by: rharring | April 21, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

ajackson3 writes
"I just pray that Congresswoman Bachman out of Minnesota gets voted out of office the next time her seat is up for election. She does not belong in the Congress."

Don't hold your breath; she will be tough to beat. Her likelihood of surviving redistricting following the 2010 census are somewhat lower, however. Some pundits are predicting her district will be swallowed up by the surrounding districts: Paulsen (R), Ellison (D), McCollum (D), Petersen (D) and Oberstar (D).

Posted by: bsimon1 | April 21, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

jimfilyaw:

You are calling me a "stupid American"?

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - certainly the Democrats are not invincible. The Republicans will pick up some Democratic seats and knock off a few incumbents. However, I think the Democrats will net more, and add to their majority in both Houses

In fact, I think the Senate Republicans are in a lot of trouble and could lose up to 9 Senate seats

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

of course they can win back seats and will probably make gains off year, but as long as the Republican Party continues to run off moderate (what they refer to as RINO's) republicans they are going to have a problem. There is a broad swath of folks like me who will not go back to the party until their mainstream stops demonizing their opponents and shuts their extremists sway in a corner. Unfortunately the inmates have taken over the asylum in the GOP.

Posted by: chet_brewer | April 21, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

unless there's a sea change in the political climate between now and november, 2010, the g.o.p. will be hard pressed to hang on to what its got. there simply aren't a sufficient number of stupid americans.

Posted by: jimfilyaw | April 21, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Fine, everyone, keep thinking that the Democrats are invincible. Pride goes before the fall.

P.S. to BB / FairlingtonBlade:

I wasn't referring to a NATURAL disaster ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

I actually think Obama has been somewhat polarizing in the sense that people have strong opinions on him, interestingly enough. That means regardless what he does or doesn't do I don't expect his approval to fall out of the 58-65 range or so, or his disapproval to fall out of the 27-34 range for a very long time. That combined with the Democrat's advantage tells me they'll do quite well in the midterm elections, for a third straight electoral victory

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I am sure they can pick up seats too, this is America. We hold our elected officials feet to the fire more now-a-days, including the ones we like! But, the republicans have been so bad of late, they will ONLY pick-up a few seats. If they campaign using patriotism as a campaign tactic against their opponent, they will not pick up those few seats.

I just pray that Congresswoman Bachman out of Minnesota gets voted out of office the next time her seat is up for election. She does not belong in the Congress.

Posted by: ajackson3 | April 21, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

The economy will be improving by 2010, what with all of the freshly printed money in the pipelines. And the inflation combined with a devalued dollar, the unavoidable price on monetizing debt, will not have hit hard yet.

No, the Republicans will not be viable on the national scene for many years, until all of their crimes are forgotten...and the consequences of all the mistakes being made right now by the Democrats (Larry Summers has to go the way of Tom Daschle!) are on full display.

Posted by: shrink2 | April 21, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - remember your history. It was Clinton's response to the midwestern floods that started his comeback from the low of Nov 94. It was Bush's heckuva response to Katrina that was the beginning of the end of the "permanent" majority. Kinda like the 1000 year Reich. If competent professionals are in charge of FEMA, it can be a bright spot.

BB

---

Yes (especially if some disaster hits).

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | April 21, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Are you kidding me?

So long as they remain the party of No, the party of unpatriotic people who back CEOs being overpaid while the American Middle Class suffers, they have ZERO chance.

None.

And their lack of diversity and uniform old people won't help them at all.

America is so over them.

Posted by: WillSeattle | April 21, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - have you seen the advantage Democrats currently have on registered voters? 8 points roughly

I think Obama is too tactful to drop in approval with his core support within his first two years, but we'll see as time goes on

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

The answer: No, it's not possible for Republicans to gain control of the House or Senate in 2010. Republicans still have their collective tails between their legs defending Bush's inept administration, and none of them have figured out a way to make their policies palatable to the American people. Republicans are somewhat adept at marketing. Unfortunately, the product they're trying to sell the American people is so crappy that no one wants to buy it. As soon as voters scratch the surface on Republican policies, they realize that those conservative ideas don't help the majority of Americans.

Posted by: sdecker | April 21, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Mark1000:

Just curious -- what was George W. Bush's approval rating on April 21, 2001?

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Please give me a chance to live like HUMAN, I am tired of living among BARBARANS last 8 years.

If we make the same mistake like last time electing these WAR_PIGS, we will be living in our GRAVES (permantly) not in TENTS.

Posted by: sam34 | April 21, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

The most likely scenario was posed by "wapo9" below: economy still in the dumps around October 2010 and Romney comes riding in on a white stallion to save the day!

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I actually believe the Democrats will pick up seats in both the House and Senate in 2010, exemplified by NY-20. President Obama has a 63% approval, and Democrats have much greater favorability than Republicans. Plus there are a lot more Republican held open seats than Democrats, and the trend in the public is to the Democrats

The idea that the Republicans will come remotely close to taking the majority is pure nonsense, pushed forth by media talking heads looking to stir drama where none exist.

Posted by: Mark1000 | April 21, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse


just how are the repulsives going to gain control back?

listening to Romney?

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | April 21, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

The surest way for it to happen is for all the Democrats to insist it could "never" happen to them ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

As long as people remember the Bush & Cheney years, as long as Rush Limbaugh keeps taking his drug induced fits in public .... the Republicans will never gain control of anything in Washington DC.

Posted by: wasaUFO | April 21, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

"The Fix writes
"History, too, is on the side of the GOP. In all but one of the midterm elections held in the first term of a president since 1970, the party out of the White House has picked up seats."

You sound so hopeful, CC. But just look at the idiocy of the rightwing posters here and you will understand that the gop is now the party of the tragically ignorant only -- and happily they are still a minority. Until they come up with something different than the stale, failed ideas they're flogging today, they'll stay that way.

Posted by: drindl | April 21, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

If Americans select these rogues, America will be lost, looted further and Americans prove themselves to be DUMBEST people on EARTH.

Posted by: sam34 | April 21, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

It is critical for the Democratic party & president Obama to enact immigration reform so we can register more & new naturalized US citizens. The immigrant communities can be strengthened for Democrats nation wide from city council to US Senatorial & governorship contests. It is important we keep our focus & solve the nation problems we inherited from Bush & Company- everything else will take care of itself, the GOP is predominantly a shrinking Southern White male party increasingly associated with right wing, Christian fundamentalism.

Posted by: yog2541 | April 21, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

I'm not so sure it's correctly characterized as "spin"-- I think "wishful thinking," or maybe even "fantasy" describes Cantor's comments more accurately. While Obama's approval ratings have dropped somewhat, Republican approval ratings are far, far lower. I doubt many Democrats or independents have forgotten the disasters of Iraq or Katrina. Likewise, the GOP is identified with a focus on social positions that is very far to the right of the mainstream public.

While Obama will not always enjoy the stratospheric approval ratings he had on Inauguration Day, it's a sure bet that the American public won't want to return a party to power that believes it's acceptable to force it's social views on those who don't accept them. The few moderates in the party are being driven out; witness the backlash against Meghan McCain.

The GOP will probably gain a few seats in the House, possibly have a net loss in the Senate, maybe a small net gain in governorships, and stay a minority party for some time to come. They'll begin to gain seats again only when the party swings back toward the center again.

Posted by: dcgrasso1 | April 21, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Sure, it can happen. I don't think anyone thinks it's particularly likely, but the mid-terms are more than 18 months away, which is an eternity in politics.

What would it take?

-A couple of corruption scandals (Dodd is a good start, Harman could get big.)
-Obama fatigue. At some point, people are going to start to get tired of BHO being on the cover of every magazine every week, and disrupting prime-time every couple of weeks with a boring speech. At least that's what I keep telling myself.
-Unemployment rates staying in the 8-10% range in many purple & red districts currently represented by Democrats.
-Some sort of international or domestic snafu.

Even that stuff might not be enough. But in the long run, it might be better for the GOP to get close without taking over Congress. When the GOP took over in 1994, it gave Clinton a perfect foil. He could co-opt their policies while blaming them for problems. The GOP should be content to make big enough gains to cause mischief and keep Obama from doing anything meaningful in the last two years of his term.

Posted by: wapo9 | April 21, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

"Energy are exponents of renewable energy."

What kind of exponents? Squares? Cubes? The dreaded Fourths?

Posted by: VTDuffman | April 21, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

God's Own Party is CERTAIN to gain back ground;

But;

as is demonstrated by the incredibly "Thick" and delusional supporters of the Left, they will continue to deny the Messiah any justifiable culpability for these disasters his incompetency is causing, for at least a few more Years!

Four L-O-N-G Years! :-(

Posted by: SAINT---The | April 21, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

No.

Posted by: spidey103 | April 21, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse

The Fix writes
"History, too, is on the side of the GOP. In all but one of the midterm elections held in the first term of a president since 1970, the party out of the White House has picked up seats."


The numbers to watch are 1) party affiliation and 2) Obama approval ratings. Currently, Obama's approval rating is still high and party identification for the GOP is still low. Swing voters still side with Obama, and the Dems have higher party ID; strategically speaking, that means the Dems are in a better position than the GOP. Right now, the GOP's hopes for winning significant numbers of seats are pinned primarily on continued economic turmoil, which seems like a very weak strategy, at best.

Posted by: bsimon1 | April 21, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

This column is nonsense. The GOP is no longer a national party. It is regional party, based in the South consisting of white conservative older males and x-treme christians.

Posted by: bobnsri | April 21, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27 - LOL, Good grief, is there one negative, gloom, doom, trite over the top comment you did NOT make. I know, I know America will cease to excist.

Posted by: sinya | April 21, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse


you're joking, aren't you.

no way in heck repulsives get back a majority in 2010.
not even 2012.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | April 21, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

"All tolled"?

Ahem. Not exactly a ringing endorsement of your editor! :D

Posted by: PMaranci | April 21, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Rassmusen, Gallup, and several other polls are reporting step drops in Obama's approval rating following his trial balloon, last week, or using a treaty with Mexico to enact new gun control laws. His strong approval rating has dropped to 32% with voters strongly disapproving. Obama's overall approval score has dropped to it's lowest point, now at 54% (somewhat approving), with 45% disapproving. Tracking these numbers, the Democratic Congresses numbers have fallen to their lowest point in more than a year with the spread between those preferring a Democratic to a Republican Congress now at +6. Compare this with a +35 spread as recently as January and you will get an idea of how badly things are going for Democrats.

Nw, I happen to think the Republican's are an even worse disaster than the Democrats, but both camps are filled to overflow with self serving clueless morons who support free trade, job outsourcing, big business in general.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | April 21, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

A political party ruled by hate and name-calling, with no agenda except to ruin the sitting President, and basically one issue [abortion] couldn't win Dog Catcher. They'll be lucky if they get it together by 2016. Not likely.

Posted by: icantstandit | April 21, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

It's becoming apparent that the President's choices for Energy are exponents of renewable energy. That's fine, but the very high costs of mandatory use of renewable energy by power companies will be passed to the public. out-of-work Americans cannot pay their bills now. An increase of electricity of 25% or more will really hurt. In short, if the GOP seems to take on the limo liberals and their proposals for Americans to pay more for electricity, health care (because Obama wants employer paid premiums taxable to workers) and water, they can win back the House in 2010.

Posted by: sperrico | April 21, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I heard you the first time ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Again, if Republicans win big in 2010, it will be their death in 2012. The American people are not going to give Republicans full control of Washington again after what they tried to do to Social Security in 2005 and 2006.

Posted by: Odil | April 21, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Again, if Republicans win big in 2010, it will be their death in 2012. The American people are not going to give Republicans full control of Washington again after what they tried to do to Social Security in 2005 and 2006.

Posted by: Odil | April 21, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Again, if Republicans win big in 2010, it will be their death in 2012. The American people are not going to give Republicans full control of Washington again after what they tried to do to Social Security in 2005 and 2006.

Posted by: Odil | April 21, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Ah, the GOP: Party of No, superstition, fear and anti-intellectualism...I suppose it could happen. However I'm betting the American people have had enough of that the past 8 years and won't turn back to the losers who presided over the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil in history, a disastrous, anything goes economy we are all suffering under now and runaway government spending. As Bush said, "Fool me once, shame on...won't get fooled again."

Laughable.

Posted by: soonerthought | April 21, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Not only can they, but they probably will. Obama's popularity, the hordes of blind fools and assorted sophomoric bubbleheads that have bought into him as their New Age Messiah, is going to cost the Democratic Party dearly. The economy wont even be close to a recovery in November 2010. It will almost certainly be much worse than it is today. Obama's economic team is repeating the same global economy folly as Bush's and job outsourcing is increasing while public debt is piling up ever deeper. We are just now sliding into this depression. The real effects wont even be felt until later this year and nearly everyone else in the world expect peak unemployment to occur just about the same time as those 2010 elections. Couple that with Obama's willingness to at least float some of the crazier policies advocated by the far left and nut cases like the Brady Bunch, and we are starting to witness he erection of a brick wall that will doom any of the reforms the idealist Obama of the primaries promised. Right now, the polls are just beginning to show it, but the general public is turning against him. So, if the Democratic Party sticks with Obama an his jolly band of Transnationalists, it will be committing political suicide. You an pretty much count on their drinking that poison until it is too late....

Posted by: mibrooks27 | April 21, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Odil:

There's ALWAYS a chance ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Jake D, If Republicans take back the House in 2010, you can say goodbye to any chace Republicans have of taking back the White House in 2012. Obama will be able to run his reelection campaign in 2012 against a far right Republican Congress that would Social Security and Medicare if there was a Republican President. Thats how Clinton won reelection in 1996.

Posted by: Odil | April 21, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Blarg:

The GOP take back Congress and the White House in 2012.

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Another, really - really bad day for the DEMOCRUDS and Baracky Hussein Obama suporters.

Posted by: hclark1 | April 21, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, the people will have learned from their mistakes and return to a more balanced congress. If democrats retain control of both houses, then you can kiss the American way of life goodbye.

Posted by: charlietuna666 | April 21, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

"Yes (especially if some disaster hits)."

Yep! More of be fearful. After all conservative republicans did to rebuild NOLA, abandoning Afghanistan and fuzzing up Iraq, I'm not sure Americans have faith in conservative republicans ability to handle another crises.
I sure don't.

Posted by: knjincvc | April 21, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

What scenario?

Posted by: Blarg | April 21, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Idaho does not have an at large district. It has two seats, each covering half the state, one of which Democrats picked up last November (the first Democratic win in a federal election there since 1992.)

Posted by: mkarns | April 21, 2009 2:40 PM | Report abuse

President Obama is popular, Congressional Republicans are extremely unpopular. Democrats will gain several Senate seats. Few House seats will change hands. Anyone who says otherwise is kidding themselves.

Posted by: jgoodfri1971 | April 21, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Blarg:

We are currently discussing exactly that scenario on the other thread.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/white-house/romneys-critique-of-the-obama.html

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

It's pretty much impossible.

The obvious model for Republicans would be 1994, when they gained 54 seats to take control of Congress. They don't need to gain 54 seats in 2010, so they have an easier job than 1994.

But the situation today is very different. In 1994, the Democrats had controlled Congress for decades, and had been wracked by scandals. Also, in 1992, the Republicans gained 9 seats, so they had some momentum in 1994. Republicans have been beaten too badly in the last 2 elections to suddenly mount a huge comeback.

The best the Republicans can hope for is to narrow the gap in 2010, gaining 10-20 seats. Then they can hope to retake control of Congress in 2012.

Posted by: Blarg | April 21, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

""I'm very confident we will pick up seats midterm if we do the necessary work of finding good candidates," Cantor said. "

That is the conservative republican challenge.

Anyone who does not who does not adhere to their extreme policies is run out of the party.

Posted by: knjincvc | April 21, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

to rephrase properly:

Can the press cover up the failure and ineptitude of the Libs sufficiently to fool the voters?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | April 21, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Yes (especially if some disaster hits).

Posted by: JakeD | April 21, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

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