Democrats whistling past the midterm graveyard
II’m always entertained by those on either side of the political spectrum who, when faced with an obvious and impending defeat, begin lists of why that won’t happen. This whistling past the graveyard is truly a testament to thinking which can somehow put aside every negative fact out there and some how spool up a "positive" outcome for his side. Today’s example is from a Democratic strategist who has discovered four more reasons Democrats will win in the mid-terms.
He sounds strangely like Republican strategists about a month before the 2008 presidential election who had umpteen reasons why McCain would win, none of which panned out. I have a feeling our Democratic strategist will have to reevaluate his ability to objectively analyze political races after the vote in November.
Nevertheless, his four reasons are, 1) Democrats will end up spending as much money as Republicans, 2)Voters aren’t voting for "generic" Republicans and that’s not good for Republicans, 3)Obama has switched to "campaign mode" and will save the day, and 4)the "enthusiasm gap" will close.
I feel for the guy. This is the thin thread upon which he hangs his hopes that Democrats won’t lose the majority in the House or seats in the Senate.
Feel free to read his "reasoning". It is full of stuff that might appeal to a political junkie who is knee deep into the whys and wherefores of this election. But for the average Joe – meh.
As the public’s attention as a whole slowly turns toward this November election, they will be guided by their overall perception of the shape of our country and its economy and who it is they think got us in this shape. It is going to be incredibly hard shift the blame on the Republicans. Crying about partisanship and in-fighting isn’t going to answer the mail. For most, I would guess, the blame has already been placed. So massive expenditures and “robust” GOTV efforts are unlikely to have the effect this gentleman might expect. And, as he notes, the other side is going to be spending too – as well as mounting their own GOTV effort.
As for his point about Obama and campaign mode, let me beg to differ. When has he ever switched out of that mode? That’s part of his problem and why his job approval rating is 42% and only 38% say they’d vote to reelect him if the election was held today. You’ve got politicians running from him. HIs signature “accomplishment” is something not a single Democrat will campaign on. And, you have professionals like Charlie Cook continuing to move races, as he did with 4 today, from “Solid Democrat” to “Likely Democrat” (see bottom right).
And that fact naturally speaks much more eloquently to this fantasy of closing the enthusiasm gap than anything else I can think of.
The Democrats are in a pickle of their own making. They have had control of the Congress for 6 years and are hooked up to a failing presidency. Those stark facts are what the public is going to take with them to the polls, and barring some economic miracle within the next 30 days, all this talk about generic politicians, the savior Obama, enthusiasm gaps closing and money to be spent is going to sound a lot like “we know McCain’s going to win and here’s why”.
Sometimes what is going to happen is just obvious – and this seems to be one of them.