Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Reading tea leaves before November

This NYT article suggests that Republicans may have difficulty turning their voters out this November. This WaPo article suggests that anger gives Democrats an edge. What’s more "pink is the new red".

My biggest worry at the moment is the Senate, where races tend to be closer because you can’t gerrymander states to protect incumbents. Of course, it’s only April.

Update: It occurs to me that one of the best mobilization tools for the Republicans is the angry Democratic Left. Some argue that 2006 might be a replay of 1994. I’m at least tempted to argue that Democrats could turn it into a replay of 1998, when Bill Clinton and his party took advantage of anger-induced Republican miscues. (Of course, the Republicans controlled Congress then, which magnified the consequences of their mistakes, making them a little harder to overlook. But it strikes me that the Democratic Left is angrier now than most Republicans were then.)

I also wonder whether a Democratic victory in 2006 would make it harder or easier for a Democratic candidate to win the White House in 2008. I’m tempted to think that angry Democrats, emboldened by a 2006 victory, would overreach and make life difficult for their 2008 standard-bearer.

Discussions - 35 Comments

Maybe it’s time for the Dept. of Der Homeland Security to start tossing out some terrorist warnings (and here we see there’s more than one meaning to "Code Red!") to try to scare back...errr....win back The People - that is, if they can spare some time from their Katrina public-relations cleanup and soliciting kids for sex online.

I think it would be enormously interesting to see Hillary try to run for the Democratic nomination while her party controlled the Senate. There would be enormous pressure for the Senate to pursue all kinds of "gotcha" investigations, move censure resolutions to the floor, cut off funding for the war, etc. On the one hand, it might provide her a "Sister Souljah" moment where she can slap down the hard core anti-war folks; on the other, it would expose her flank to the Kossites.

If the GOP base won’t turn out, the republicans have only themselves to blame. They should have been pushing the issues that rally the base: such as confirming judges, and making the 2003 tax cuts permanent. Instead, Karl Rove has been telling W to use his "political capital" (remember that infamous boast from W’s post-election press conference?), to serve Vicente Fox, and provide a de facto amnesty to 11 million illegal immigrants. Out here n California, that makes the rank and file want to throw up; and give up.
Rove thinks he will get more republican victories by "stealing the democrats issues"; but the base refers to that as "selling out".

The most recent poll: 49 to 33 D, with Ds having a big, big anger or intensity edge. Lots of apparently safe seats aren’t so safe. Even libertarian types are talking about their preference for divided govt. The only question left is whether the D takeover of Congress will help the Rs in 2008. The answer is yes.

and usually that’s not very far!! News items like this sure aren’t going to tempt people to vote GOP.

That’s a fair generalization...sigh

I am a republican and a conservative and I’m upset about runaway deficit spending, I want the tax cuts made permanent, I want more conservative judges confirmed, things could be going a lot better in Iraq and I am tired of the steady drumbeat of bad news coming from democrats and the msm. I am especially upset with the utter silence from George Bush and republican leaders, I want to see some fight back from Bush and republicans and I want to see it now. So as you can see, I’m not particularly happy with George Bush or the republican House of Representatives or the republican Senate, but that does not mean that I will stay away from the polls in November or vote to hand the reins of government over to a not ready for anytime soon democrat party. In addition, I could care less what the Europeans think about George Bush or republicans because they didn’t like Clinton or the democrats either.

We’ve heard this buzz that the democrats were going to take over house and senate before, the msm were printing similar stories in 2004 and 2002. Take a look at this pre-election polling data from 2004,2004 Congressional Polling Data - Pre Election, it seems to be more of the same doom and gloom that we are seeing and hearing now.

There are too many interesting things happening, especially in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Maryland, democratic operatives are insisting that the democrats go negative against Steele in Maryland as soon as possible. If Blackwell wins the primary in Ohio and Swann in Pennsylvania, there will be a steady drumbeat of pressure to go negative on all three and there is a tremendous opportunity that the democrats will overplay that race card and it will blow up in their faces not just in Ohio, Maryland, and Pennsylvania but, on a national scale.

I’m not giving in or up yet because the democrats have blown too many elections just in the past 6 years to believe that their not still stuck on stupid and of course Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are the two very bright spots for total melt down by the rats in 2006. So, I guess you could say I’m concerned but optimistic.

I am tired of the steady drumbeat of bad news coming from democrats and the msm. I am especially upset with the utter silence from George Bush and republican leaders Comment 8 by Mad As Hell Conservative

Dear Mad As Hell:

Please allow me to recommend that you do as I do: Every day, I read Power Line. Then I go to the websites Power Line links to, including NLT. In doing so, I have come to the realization that President Bush and Republican leaders are not silent, but the msm (mostly socialist media) simply refuses to publish their words. Your anger toward the msm may increase, but your upsetness (a word invented by Kato Kaelin) toward President Bush and Republicans may diminish.

Which political party was the champion of the creation of the Dept. of Der Homeland Security?

/sarcasm on/

Of course, we all know that the President just loved the creation of another federal department, don’t we?

/sarcasm off/

Dear Mad as Hell. I think you should do what I do. Since I am crazy as a loon, I find that the MSM does not reflect my version of ANYTHING! So, instead of joining the main stream, I try to read only publications and websites that reflect my own point of view: www.crazyasaloon.com, www.foilinmyhat.com, and www.gwbspeaksmylingo.com.

I find that this serves to reassure me that I am fine, and that the rest of the world is out of touch with reality.

Every day, I read Power Line. Then I go to the websites Power Line links to, including NLT. In doing so, I have come to the realization that President Bush and Republican leaders are not silent, but the msm (mostly socialist media) simply refuses to publish their words.

Wow, I must not be reading the same "MSM" papers that you’re reading, Guido. Socialist? Come on. And what exactly do you people have to be so angry about? Controlling all branches of government isn’t enough, apparently. Now you have to have the comfort of knowing that the Democrats will NEVER again take control of Congress or the White House.

Also, Guido, since when is the President of the United States "silenced" by the media? He (and his remarks) receives tons of coverage in every newspaper and on every news station in the country, and he has PLENTY of opportunities to address the nation with speeches, addresses and press conferences, so I’m just not sure how you can claim that he’s somehow being muzzled.

/sarcasm on/

Hey Dale, If I remember correctly the Department of Homeland Security was the baby of the democrats who attempted to gain political advantage after the 911 Commission Report. Bush was initially against DHS.

/sarcasm off/

/sarcasm perpetually on.....

Regarding the DHS, it was GWB’s genius to fill it with crooks, jerks, and pornographers. Another good idea made better!

Funny (Michael) Moore Groupie, so, on the basis of 2 or 3 bad eggs, you paint the entire Department of Homeland Security as crooks, jerks, and pornographers.

Hmm...let me see, you’re probably sitting in your pajamas (the same pair that you’ve worn without changing since 2000), smoking your endless supply of cigarettes, drinking your not so near beer, and ranting at the gods for your misfortune of being a free american with more rights than most of the world enjoys and in a prosperous era. You really don’t know why you’re angry but the voices in your head don’t like the way George Bush says nuclear so, you must rant, you must garble the truth and/or completely ignore it. It appears thatt you have been condemned like Sisyphus to digitally troll NLT, rolling your rants to the top bar of your browser only to find them spilling back onto your pajamas, your cigs and into your not so near beer. No wonder you rant.

Yeah, Uncle Guido’s starting to really sound like a severely senile old curmudgeon. The MSM is not just liberal, but socialist? What have I been missing? My paper only has a business section that gives me the perspective of investors. Not much labor organizing news and opinion in there. Stock reports and futures charts.

As for any "silence" from the White House, I’ve only noticed that when someone from the White House is being investigated, or the veep shoots his friend in the face (when he mistakes him for a bird). Otherwise, it’s a steady stream of carefully filtered speeches and reminders about 9/11.

Also, why is Uncle Guido quoting Kato Kaelin??? Bizarre.

Like most readers of PowerLine and watchers of Fox, those people are seeking affirmation and comfort, a constant, sugary pat on the head that all is well and they are right in every knuckle-dragging impulse they feel like indulging at the moment.

Wow, I must not be reading the same "MSM" papers that you’re reading, Guido. Socialist? Comment 12 by Phil Thompson

Yes, socialist. In the sense that they back the social programs which perpetuate big gubmint, poverty and dependent classes, socialist. Please do not assume I condemn socialists. They’re just wrong.

And what exactly do you people have to be so angry about? Comment 12 by Phil Thompson

Why do you assume I’m angry? I enjoy taking pot shots at easy targets. I got over my anger when I cancelled my subscription to the LA LA Times, back in ’92.

Mad As Hell:

You’ve got 3 choices. You can do what I suggest, you can do what FMG suggests and become crazy as a loon, as he is, or you can ignore us both.

Reality Bits


FMG always brings sharp sarcasm with solid arguments. If he didn’t comment, I don’t think I’d be inspired to. So, while your picture is amusing, I’d at least follow it up with an argument...something.

Yeah, Fung (I’m old school, won’t give into the "clever" FMG tag) ought to go work for PajamasMedia or something. Oh wait, that’s the RIGHT-WING blogging group. Make a note of that RB - you are supposed to embrace that role of the idle pontificator, as Jammies Media does, not poke fun of it! Reality Bytes seems to be taking the "privacy" tack that David Frisk is so fond of - anyone who doesn’t agree who dares to comment here is necessarily a "troll." I guess this attitude shouldn’t surprise me. Duh....NLT...Love It or Leave It!!

Thanks Fred, I always appreciate the support.

Reality: Since you are apparently trolling for fantasy fodder, I am more of an undershorts guy, and I quit smoking when my wife became pregnant with our first child.

Other than that, you’ve nailed it!

Fred, where do you see solid or rational argument in comment 14? It might be better argued that FMG always brings sharp sarcasm and at times brings solid arguments. Facts are solid because they can be verified while the contents of comment 14 are baseless and as vapid as two day old warm near bear.

...crazy...loon... Comment 11 by FMG

...angry...Comment 12 by Phil Thompson

genius ... crooks jerks pornographers.Comment 14 by FMG

severely senile old curmudgeon...Bizarre...seeking affirmation and comfort, a constant, sugary pat on the head... knuckle-dragging Comment 15 by Craig Scanlon

If clever adjectives were the way to win arguments, you guys would never lose. But they’re not.

make that near beer.

...why is Uncle Guido quoting Kato Kaelin??? Bizarre Comment 15 by Craig Scanlon

Read the comment again Mr. Scanlon. I did not "quote" Kato Kaelin. During the O.J. Simpson trial, Kato Kaelin, while testifying, spoke the word "upsetness" Marsha Clark then perpetuated the idiocy by repeating the new word.

The MSM is not just liberal, but socialist? What have I been missing?

Mr. Scanlon, I can only speak from my own perspective. My 80 year old parents get their news from ABC TV and the local newspaper exclusively. They were very worried about their perception that President Bush is constantly attacked and he never fights back. I send my parents copies of articles from the websites mentioned above, indicating that the Bush administration does regularly respond, and does so effectively, quoting the texts of the responses. These articles reassure my parents.

I think "angry" is more of an ACCURATE adjective than a clever one, since I was addressing someone who identified himself as "Mad as Hell." And where’s your evidence that the MSM "backs social programs that perpetuate big gubmint?" Anyway, that wasn’t your initial claim- you said that the "mostly socialist media" refuses to publish the words of Bush and other Republican leaders. What’s your response to my assertion that Bush is quoted frequently in the media and has numerous venues through which he can address the public?

Thanks for that important clarification, Uncle Guido. Correction: you didn’t quote Kato Kaelin, you borrowed his yet-to-catch-on neologism - for some reason. Have you considered writing a book of O.J. trial trivia? Dain might buy it.

That’s great that your printouts of PowerLine and NoLeftTurns are being used to reassure worried geriatric conservatives. They’re like a soothing balm, a Ben-Gay for the crippled mind.

They’re like a soothing balm, a Ben-Gay for the crippled mind. Comment 26 by Craig Scanlon

It occurs to me that one of the best mobilization tools for the Republicans is the angry Democratic Left. Post by Joseph Knippenberg

You, Mr. Scanlon and your cohorts, are excellent examples of Professor Knippenberg’s point.

See, I thought that the purpose of the news was to inform, but Uncle Guido seems to think that its purpose is to reassure. But those meanies in the "socialist" media keep on reporting bad news!

Re: Comment 28 by Phil Thompson

Mr. Thompson, your interpretation of what I "seem to think" speaks volumes about you. It speaks nothing about what I actually think.

But, Phil does accurately reflect what you wrote in post 9. You don’t like what you read in the news, and so you find biased outlets that print what you like, and you feel better. So, if that is not what you "think," then why did you write it?

Guido, regarding comment 27, I’m not a Democrat and I engaged in a brief chuckle as I wrote comment 26. I was hardly feeling angry. As a matter of fact, I’m not angry now either, as I picture your parents getting into the Oldsmobile to get to Denny’s in time for the early bird special. "Hurry up Gladys, and don’t forget those PowerLine printouts from Guido! They help me to digest my patty melt!"

"Guido, regarding comment 27, I’m not a Democrat and I engaged in a brief chuckle as I wrote comment 26."

Sure you aren’t, Chris/ Anna/ Democratic Party man.

Why is it that 99% of the bloggers and right-wing commenters here seem to think that 1) if you’re not a Republican and/or you don’t like Bush (becase of his policies), then you MUST be a Dem? Has no one told them that people can register to vote as independents, as Greens, as Libertarians, etc.??? and 2) that anyone who’s more liberal than, say, Lieberman, has more than a few reasons to be dissatisfied with the Democrat party these days, from both the principles perspective and the strategy perspective. I am no Democratic partisan. They frequently disappoint or disgust me. But - now try to understand this - that doesn’t mean I like Republicans & their policies. Hope you can grasp that, Dain.

Yikes - Fox News (!!!) poll says that only 33% of Americans approve of Bush. An all-time low!! Pretty soon, it’ll just be down to NLT bloggers (and 90% of its readers).

Now, Craig, you know that polls don’t mean anything!! Why, 33% means that ONLY 67 percent disapprove! And 67 is in the 60’s, while 60 is nearer to 50 than it is to 100, so we might say that Bush’s approval rating is split evenly among voters.

Not only that, but plenty of other referents have enjoyed low ratings, and have come back to shock and awe their opponents: viruses, for instance. The current approval rate for viruses is only 35%, and the projection is that viruses are going to be around for a long time. GWB can take heart from this.

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