Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Some Very Basic Electoral Math

In November 2008 Barack Obama won 53% of the popular vote in the state of Virginia. Twelve months later, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate there won 41% of the popular vote, 12 percentage points less. Obama won 57% of the vote in New Jersey, one year before incumbent Democratic governor Jon Corzine won 45%, also a 12-point difference. In Massachusetts Obama won 62% of the vote. Martha Coakely appears likely to wind up with 47% of the vote in today's special senatorial election, a drop of 15 percentage points.

One way of connecting those three dots is to say that any Democrat running for senator this year in a state that Obama carried with less than, say, 56% of the vote is likely to have an interesting election. Sen. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota, which gave Obama 45% of the vote in 2008, has already decided to spend more time with his family. Sen. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, which gave Obama 39% of its vote, has one of the most difficult challenges facing any incumbent in 2010.

Among the states Obama did carry, but not overwhelmingly, are these:

  • Indiana, where Obama received 50% of the vote, and where Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh is seeking election to a third term.
  • North Carolina, where Obama got 50%, and where Republican Sen. Richard Burr is seeking reelection to a second term.
  • Florida, where Obama got 51%, and an open Senate seat held by an appointed Republican will be contested. 
  • Ohio, where Obama got 52%, has an open Senate seat due to the retirement of Sen. George Voinovich.
  • Colorado, where Obama got 54%, and where Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet will run for election to a full term after being appointed to fulfill the term to which Ken Salazar was elected in 2004.  (Salazar became Secretary of the Interior in 2009.)
  • Iowa, where Obama got 54%, and where Republican Sen. Charles Grassley will seek reelection to a sixth term.
  • New Hampshire where Obama got 54%, has an open Senate seat due to the retirement of Republican Senator Judd Gregg.
  • Nevada, where Obama got 55%, and where Sen. Harry Reid, the Democratic Senate Majority Leader, will seek reelection to a fifth term.
  • Pennsylvania, where Obama got 55%, and where Democrat-turned-Republican-turned Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter is seeking a sixth term.

If the pattern in New Jersey, Virginia and Massachusetts holds that would be five Republican holds and four Republican gains.

Categories > Elections

Discussions - 1 Comment

Yes, the Republicans are resurgent, but the real question is this: Has this political party learned anything from its brief sojourn in the wilderness? I'm truly sick of rinos and their ilk. Do these people even understand the notion of "less government" and "lower taxes?"

Our republic is in a dangerous position -- half the people pay 97% of the Federal income tax. We are becoming milk cows for the Left. The GOP needs to understand who they are representing here!

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