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Elections 2005: what do they mean?

Michael Barone (who else?) tells you more than you ever wanted to know about Virginia (and promises more about other states later). Here’s his very tentative bottom line:

[T]he Virginia and New Jersey results show state electorates pretty much where they were in 2001. You could argue that means the Bush and Republican turnout and percentage increases of 2004 have disappeared. But that would still leave us as the 49 percent nation we were in 2000—and not a nation that is swinging as heavily to the Democrats as it did to the Republicans in 1993-94.

There is, of course, much more here, all of it worth reading. Hat tip:
Ken Blanchard of South Dakota Politics.

Update: Here’s Barone on New Jersey.

Discussions - 6 Comments

Let’s not forget that the Lt. Governor of Virginia went from being a democrat to a republican. (And the Attorney General, however, I am not sure what party the last AG was.)

The last AG was Kilgore, so that didn’t change. Note that Barone points out in the article that New Jersey actually became more Republican. This is not the victory that Howard Dean is pretending it is.

Dean is over the top.

Barone is right in all the right places, but this Virginia Republican must add what I think Barone did not point out: namely, that for most of the campaign, Kilgore was clearly ahead in the polls (as much as a 10% spread) and it was seen as "his to lose." So how did he lose? His commercials were so bad, and consistently bad, that even die-hard Republicans held their nose at them. Where Kaine’s were consistently upbeat, friendly, and down-right approachable, Kilgore’s were negative, manipulative, and simply undignified. For the uninitiated voter, Kaine’s ads gave you a lift, whereas Kilgore’s sent you to the curb.

Howard Dean is a terrible leader for the Democratic Party. They ran two races in states that already had Democratic governors, and they maintained the status quo while actually losing a little ground in Jersey. They got the living crap beat out of their nationally-funded initiatives in Ohio. But this guy sends out a press release pretending it was the greatest day in the Party’s history. Are the Democrats really so accustomed to losing that they need to celebrate every little non-victory as if it were the battle of Agincourt?

This new poll done by the wsj
is a little disheartening. To quote a few lines

"Among other findings, the poll indicates that voters no longer prefer Republicans to Democrats on handling taxes, cutting government spending, dealing with immigration and directing foreign policy."

Perhaps that is because they don’t do those things well anymore. "Cutting government spending." Hah!!!

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