I’ll start going out on a limb now, even though I will not make my detailed predictions on the elections until Monday. I believe that the Wellstone political rally/memorial hurt Democrats. Before the event I had a hunch that it could backfire on them, if badly handled. It was badly handled. They know it, even Dan Rather knows it. Jesse Ventura knows it, and he said it most clearly: "The Democrats ought to be ashamed of themselves." The American people now know it. At least Wellstone’s campaign manager has apologized. This will help them to nationalize the elections, but not to their advantage, not in the way they had hoped. It will not help them bring out the vote in any other state, maybe not even in Minnesota. And it will have the effect of bringing out the GOP vote, and even some independents. And in Minnesota they will now send out that great campaigner Walter Mondale to make a go of it and I hope he will bring his beef with him. I think Mondale only has a fifty-fifty shot at winning. See this recounting by Howard Kurtz for some details. All this shows how tough the Democrats are, and how hollow at the core. They are interested only in winning elections, the purpose for the victories no longer matter. Everyone is seeing this. Take a look at these two pieces on these issues, one by Jonah Goldberg and the other by Robert Novak.
Now for my hunches. I am climbing out on the limb. There, I am on it. One, The Republicans will retain the House. They may even gain two or three seats. Needless to say (given the historic losses by the party not holding the White House in off year elections) this will have to be seen to be a massive defeat for the Democrats. Two, The GOP will take back the Senate, barely. You can start sawing off the limb, if you like, but I think I’m right. (I’ll give you the details on Monday). I think I’m right because the only thing that would save the hollow-at-the-core Democratic Party in this election is a great Demo turnout. And I see no sign of that. They are now talking about just holding their own. Drudge reports that McAuliffe is already in trouble. I am smelling panic among the Democratic operatives as I am smelling the need for immediate cash. They are now playing defense, but you can only win if you play offense. Oh, yes, one more thing: The economy raced ahead at a 3.1% annual rate during the third quarter, and I predict that the market will be up for the third straight week in a row.