Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Wild Voters?

Larry Sabato offers his analysis of the considerable place of anger in the 2006 elections. He goes on to give a race-by-race analysis that shows that both the House and the Senate could go either way. My own study of his study shows that there’s more hope for the House than some say, but the Senate appears more vulnerable than we’ve thought.

Discussions - 5 Comments

I agree. The Senate is at risk. Certainly there is a grave risk of sinking down to 51 seats. If one of those is Chafee, that probably makes it 50. If (as I devoutly hope) Chafee meets the fate he deserves at the hands of Rhode Islanders, 51 is still bad because a senator can die or resign at any time.

Senators are more identified with national policy than congressmen, who are often seen, not incorrectly, as errand boys. If voters are sufficiently anti-Bush and anti-war on Election Day, GOP senators will pay much of the price.

Concretely, Burns may simply be too clumsy and gaffe-ridden to be re-elected, especially against Tester, the kind of left-wing hayseed (phony moderate) the Democrats are so good at producing in red states. Santorum is much more talented, but probably reminds many people (who should vote for him) of every extra-bright, conscientious, articulate, moral nerd they remember from Catholic school. Not good. DeWine has perhaps alienated too many conservatives, good jobs have melted away in Ohio, and Soccer Mom knows -- from the drive-by media -- that she is supposed to vote Democratic this year because Ohio Republicans have screwed up and are unpopular.

David F--good analysis (OH and MT aren’t really anything near close right now), and the Rs could also lose in Tenn and NJ, for reasons I have no time to explain now...Santorum, no matter what he does (and I think he’s campaigning well), has no chance against an even vaguely pro-life cand. And that Casey is doing what he has to do to win, which is simply to be less pro-life, but not too much less, than S.

I think any of the senators I named can be re-elected. And Santorum at least will run an effective campaign, no matter what. But it doesn’t look good for these three -- at the moment.
In addition, the phony moderate schtick may work in TN and VA, with Ford and Webb. I also agree that NJ isn’t quite as promising as it may seem. If the Dems can push Menendez out, Kean’s challenge could collapse. I saw him in a debate on C-SPAN and he was unimpressive. Menendez, who is simply the usual machine-Democrat crap, actually did better.

The most recent senate polls show MT trending strongly D, and some D trend in MO and TN. VA is too close for comfort. On the other hand, Bush is up a bit and gas prices are way down. And Santorum’s private polls put him near the margin of error (but I really doubt there’s much hope there). Hope and fear are both quite justified at this point.

And the experts who call OH a toss-up aren’t looking at the actual numbers, it seems to me.

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