Bush is important but let's not forget the Senate!


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tulsamal
October 3, 2004, 03:36 PM
From a previously linked to site: http://www.electoral-vote.com/

Not much news on the presidential front today, but a lot of news on another, much less talked about front: the Senate. Five Democratic senators from the South are retiring at and end of this session of Congress: John Breaux (D-LA), John Edwards (D-NC), Bob Graham (D-FL), Fritz Hollings (D-SC), and Zell Miller (D-GA). Only three Republicans are retiring: Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-CO), Peter Fitzgerald (R-IL), and Don Nickles (R-OK). In addition to these eight open seats, one other seat is semi-open: Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is fighting to actually be elected to the Senate seat her dad the governor appointed her to.

Early in the year, the Republicans couldn't control their glee at the possibility of picking up as many as five Senate seats in the South, which has become increasingly Republican over the years. But a funny thing happened on the way to the election. The voters had different ideas. Not only are the Democrats holding four of the five seats in the South, but they are leading in all three formerly Republican seats. They are also leading in the only two really contested seats in which an incumbent might lose: Alaska and South Dakota.

If the Senate election were held today, the Democrats would take control of the Senate, 52-48 (counting independent Sen. Jeffords as a Democrat, since he caucuses with the Democrats). And this realignment does not take into account the possibility that Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-RI) might pull a Jeffords and jump ship. He is from a hugely Democratic state and, like Zell Miller, would be much more appreciated in the other party. The only reason Chafee hasn't switched is out of a sense of duty to his late father, John Chafee, who was a respected Republican senator from RI.

I heard a couple days ago that the Republican Senatorial Reelection Cmtee had lots more money left while the Democratic one was running low. I _hope_ we are going to see a swing in this area in the last month. We really will have to worry about the AWB coming back if we lose the leadership in the Senate.

Gregg

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parsec
October 3, 2004, 03:49 PM
I can tell you right now that the Republicans will lose a seat in Colorado. Pete Coors (the NRA endorsed candidate) is behind in the polls. This is actually one where all of you can help out, and have fun doing it. Buy Coors beer! :D

tulsamal
October 3, 2004, 05:45 PM
Yeah, I keep hoping that Coors will win in CO and Daschle will lose in SD. The GOP is putting a lot of money into the SD race.

Gregg

DMF
October 3, 2004, 06:38 PM
. . . and don't forget the house either.

Waitone
October 3, 2004, 07:25 PM
I suspect Bush is more like an historic democrat, strong on defense and foreign policy but a social liberal at home. We will find out pronto what his real belief system is if he is re-elected. At that point, the only check on his forthcoming misbehavior is a split congress. I advocate giving one house to the opposition party just to keep Bush honest.

Checks and balances are a wonderful thing.

tulsamal
October 3, 2004, 08:05 PM
I advocate giving one house to the opposition party just to keep Bush honest.

There has been a lot of work done in PolSc that shows the majority of Americans are comfortable with "split government." I personally don't like it because then everything starts to look like a coalition government. Everything has to be compromised. You end up never being sure whether some ideological policy position is really right or wrong. I would prefer the GOP actually "do what they think is right" for 4-8 years and then face election. If we think their ideas didn't work, we vote them out and the Democrats try it. That's basically the way a Parlimentary system works. I just think we end up with a whole bunch of ideas in both parties and yet we never really find out whether they work or not!

Anyway, that's not what I was going to say! I meant to point out that Americans favor the idea of split government but don't seem to think about it in the polling booth. As Tip O'Neil said, "all politics is local." People in OK won't go in to the booth and think about whether they want the Democrats to control the Senate. They will vote for whether they prefer Carson or Coburn. There are issues surrounding both of them. And the further down you go (to House members and then State Reps and Senators) the more important the individual is and the less important party.

If Daschle really thought "building a coalition" was the important thing, he wouldn't be running all those TV ads showing him hugging President Bush! He just wants you to trust HIM and like HIM. Try not to think about what the national party he represents is actually like!

Gregg

Standing Wolf
October 3, 2004, 09:04 PM
I advocate giving one house to the opposition party just to keep Bush honest.

The Senate is in R.I.N.O. hands. That's close enough, isn't it?

Moparmike
October 3, 2004, 09:58 PM
I hope the GOP has more money for senate. The only ads I see for senate here are for the Democrat incumbent. The sad thing is that this area is the most likely area to carry the seat for the GOP candidate, Holt.:(

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