Right Wing Nut House



Filed under: Politics — Rick Moran @ 6:57 am

Stop the presses! Hold the phone! Can it be true? Are the Republicans poised to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on election day?

A week ago, I would have laughed at any such nonsense. But as the Foley caper fades into the background and the so-called “marginal voters” start to concentrate on the choices they will have on election day, several trends that are favorable to the Republican cause begin to emerge.

I should emphasize that I still believe that the Democrats will take control of the House and will either have nominal control in the Senate or do no worse than tie the Republicans. But my reading of some individual polls in key House races shows that the bleeding from the Foley mess has essentially stopped and that given other factors, the GOP may be able to steal just enough seats to barely maintain control of the House while doing no worse than having a 1-2 seat majority in the Senate.

Providing that no more scandals give the Democrats any additional fodder for their smear campaign.

Indeed, that will be the overriding factor in any putative Republican comeback. The voters are more than ready to give Republicans the boot but are hesitating to do so simply because as they turn to the Democrats for leadership or any kind of organized message, all they hear are crickets chirping. The Dems are letting the GOP self-destruct - something the Republicans appear to be very good at doing. But instead of offering a positive alternative to the scandal-plagued conservatives, all they can do is point their fingers and accuse the GOP of malfeasance. Running on a platform that encompasses the brave message “We are not Republicans” is not inspiring anybody.

This points up the fact that the Democrats have essentially failed in their efforts to nationalize the election. While they would love to make George Bush and the Iraq War the overriding issues in the campaign, the fact is that the internals for most local and regional polls show voters are not buying into the Democratic view of things. Local issues are still trumping national ones by a large margin. And while many Democrats are running ads about the Iraq debacle, few are making it the centerpiece of their campaigns.

This is driving the netnuts wild. They are accusing Democratic candidates of playing it safe by not going on the warpath over Bush, Iraq, the GOP culture of scandal, and other issues that they have brought to the forefront. The Kos Kids and other lefties are railing against candidates who appear to be taking the advice of professional campaign consultants rather than the self appointed experts in the lefty blogosphere. These Democratic challengers have watered down their message and, in the view of the netnuts, squandered an opportunity to sharply delineate their positions on Iraq especially.

Actually, they may have a point. The problem, as the pros could tell the netnuts, is that the American people are ambivalent about what to do with regards to getting out of Iraq. By large majorities, they oppose the war. But at the same time, they realize the danger of simply running away without leaving behind some kind of stable regime that wouldn’t immediately fall under the control of terrorists or terrorist sympathizing elements. Hence, most Democrats are running ads about Iraq that point up the mistakes made and how they want things to get better.

Here in Illinois, even Iraq War vet Tammy Duckworth is finessing the issue, not even mentioning withdrawal in her TV ads against Republican Peter Roskam. In this primarily GOP district (an open seat due to Henry Hyde’s retirement), the race is a toss up at this point. And Roskam still has more than $1.5 million to spend on TV in the final three weeks while Duckworth has half that much.

This brings up another huge Republican advantage going into the final weeks of the election. Both individual GOP candidates and the National Republican Party will be able to bury their Democratic opponents in TV ads from now until November 7. And since many voters get most of their information from this kind of paid advertising (direct mail being another source for voter’s information), being able to outspend their Democratic challengers by 3 or 4 to 1 on TV could tip the scales in many of these close elections.

At the very least, what the GOP cash advantage does is reduce their potential losses. Three weeks ago, there was the very real possibility that the Democrats could take 50 seats or more away from the GOP. This now appears to be a fantasy and was never really possible. More likely, the Democrats will be held to gains under 30 seats (their best case scenario). This would still mean a GOP loss of control in the House but with the caveat that winning back the chamber in 2008 a real possibility.

But what about 2006? By my count, there are six Republican incumbents who have no chance on election day with another 15-17 in deep trouble. By that I mean that they trail their Democratic challengers by more than 8 points 3 weeks out. All the Democrats need to do is capture 9 or 10 of those 17 seats in order for Speaker Pelosi to bang the gavel next January to bring the new Congress to order. And since the Republicans do not lead in any Democratic open districts, the job for Democrats becomes that much easier.

On the other hand, all the GOP has to do is hang on to 7-8 of those 17 seats in order to deny the Democrats control. So in the end, the huge battle for power between the two parties will come down to a handful of races in the midwest and northeast. These are districts that are nominally Republican, went for George Bush in 2004, and where the GOP get out the vote operations may play the decisive role.

Personally, I don’t think it will be that close. I think it likely that the Republicans lose 21-23 seats with some second tier Republicans who are currently ahead losing in the end as marginal voters are attracted to many of this very good crop of candidates fielded by Democrats this time around. But that could change dramatically in the next 10 days or so as even marginal voters come back to the GOP fold following the coming ad blitz.

Hold on to your hats. It will be a rollercoaster ride between now and election day.


  1. The polls were wrong in 2002 and 2004. They have done nothing to correct the problems that they identified for the discrepcancies after both elections and the distortions have brobably grown further as people shift away from being contactable by conventional ways.

    The polls will be wrong again for this election. Both houses will remain Republican (and if they don’t it will give the Dems just enough time to screw things up in the House to kill any chance that any Democrat will have in getting into the White House in 08.)

    Comment by Fred Fry — 10/18/2006 @ 8:04 am

  2. I’m not a gambling man, but I would wager that Dems and their MSM operatives will hit Republicans with another dozen or so strategically timed “scandals” between now and November 7th. I wouldn’t be surprised if some anonymous source on the Hill informs us that Dennis Hastert owns stock in a Tiajuana donkey show or Mark Kline rolled back odometers when he sold used cars.

    No doubt the accusations of Republican malfeasance will become increasingly creative the closer we get to election day. And the self-appointed guardians of truth will be right there, eating every single one of these bullshit sandwiches and asking for seconds.

    But in spite of the MSM’s complicity with Dems, Republicans really screwed the pooch this time around. If they lose either or both houses, the lion’s share of the responsibility will rest with their extremely ineffective Congressional leadership.

    Comment by Sirius Familiaris — 10/18/2006 @ 8:06 am

  3. Outstanding analysis, sir. This is going to be a very odd mid-term election, with a huge amount of uncertainty in the electorate. I agree that the War in Iraq is not popular and that neither party has defined a way out of a bad situation. Not even Republican syncophants are buying the “stay the course” slogan any more. The Democrats offer an equally muddy and undefined “don’t stay the course” slogan. The lack of a tangible plan, after throwing Saddam out, has paralyzed American efforts in Iraq and seems to have carried over to the American public. Frequently shifting polling data reflect the uncertainty we feel as a nation.

    The Far Left and the Far Right hurl insults at each other, leaving the old, but still quite real Silent Majority unenthused about either party. My guess is that people will hold their nose and vote in a small Republican majority in the Senate and a razor thin majority for Republicans in the House. The message of fear, far less resonant than in the past (but with Democrats offering no alternative), will have just enough play for the Republicans to barely survive 2006.

    The gutting of Republican power will come in 2008. Some charismatic Democrat not tied to previous administrations(Obama is my guess) will use the Clinton strategy of appealing to the middle (with Clinton it was more words than deeds, but it worked) to sweep Democrats into power in the White House and Congress. This 2006 election will be a wild ride up to election day!

    Comment by ed — 10/18/2006 @ 9:00 am

  4. don’t forget about Carl Rove.

    Comment by Bob Zimmerman — 10/18/2006 @ 10:21 am

  5. Look for the old liberal media, broadcast & print, to generate a new anti-Republican smear campaign on some artificial issue that is favorable to the Democrats.

    Comment by Matt — 10/18/2006 @ 10:29 am

  6. You base your premise on the polls as they stand. I don’t even remotely believe the polls. The House and Senate will stay Republican. Count on it.

    Comment by Terry — 10/18/2006 @ 3:25 pm

  7. “Stay the Course”, in Republican lingo means winning. That is the bottom line and winning is not suggested by the Democrats in any way. Therefore, a losing issue for them.

    I have little doubt that the media and their polls are politicized and they are doing their best to insure Democratic control - but, unless several other MSM gotcha’s show up before the election, I also predict that the Republicans hold both houses (not by much, mind ya). They (the MSM and Democrats) do tend to overplay their hand.

    Of course any relavent terrorist activity that is uncovered before the election will also sway the results. Things remain in flux (and no, that is not anticipated - for the conspiracy minded).

    The bottom line is that the Democrats offer nothing for non hard-core democratic voters and the “but I hate Bush” theme only goes so far.

    Comment by Deagle — 10/18/2006 @ 3:49 pm

  8. I’m not so sure that the GOP congressional leadership has failed. Don’t forget that the GOP in the House are much more conservative than the President, and have gone along with him to support the war effort, instead of giving the Dem’s fodder for breaking ranks with the WH. All this talk about losing seats or control of one or both houses of Congress may be good for the GOP (teach ‘em a lesson) is rediculous. The ones who need the lesson taught to them are the liberal Donkeys! It’s like saying, “yeah, I’ll sure teach them a lesson. I’ll kill myself and then they’ll be sorry I’m not around anymore!” That’s not a sane solution to anything. Liberals have no solutions, no ideas, no leadership. A party that governs by committee and polls is a party doomed to failure. And so the Dem’s will fail, and keep failing until they vanish from the scene like the Whigs. There is no substitute for victory. You can’t affect the outcome by quitting the game. All GOP whiners should go to Blockbuster and rent the movie “Rudy”, and then get out and VOTE! The only poll that counts is the one called “Election”!

    Comment by Bruce — 10/18/2006 @ 4:19 pm

  9. Bruce,

    Great point! The House Republicans have be much more conservative than Bush. Just why would they be voted out - assuming that the same majority voted them in is still active.

    Comment by Deagle — 10/18/2006 @ 4:23 pm

  10. … the GOP may be able to steal just enough …

    At least you got one thing right …

    that’s exactly how they’ll do it.

    (Unconscious authorial intent — ain’t it a bitch?)

    Comment by anonymous — 10/18/2006 @ 4:42 pm

  11. Anonymous,

    Understand you choice of usernames…

    Guess your one of those conspiracy theorists…heh. Good luck in the future, you will need it…

    Comment by Deagle — 10/18/2006 @ 4:57 pm

  12. I think you are overlooking two things. The Republicans have a lot of cash to spend in the next few weeks, some say over $100 million for ads alone. The other significant oversight in your analysis is the immigration issue. You know, that issue that garners 80%+ support from the AMericna people — The fence bill signing will be next week, coupled with a lot of ads that say, vote Democrat for amnesty.

    Game over.

    Comment by bil — 10/18/2006 @ 6:26 pm

  13. My God. As if it makes the slightest difference which party wins. The party of Corrupt State Corporatism vs. the party of Corrupt State Socialism. And both hate conservative middle class white people. Yea. What a choice.

    Comment by Xenophon — 10/18/2006 @ 9:09 pm

  14. In a closely divided race the secret of winning is peaking on election day. If the Democrats succeed in doing that, they’ll take control of at least the House. That hasn’t been their pattern in recent elections.

    Comment by Dave Schuler — 10/18/2006 @ 9:25 pm

  15. Xenophon,

    You have a valid point..Not too sure myself which is the least corrupt party. I really wish that I did not think this way…but unfortunately, facts are in your favor.

    Given that, the Democrats suck! Who else to vote for….

    Comment by Deagle — 10/19/2006 @ 12:13 am

  16. My God, its a smear campaign every other minute brought to you by our msm and the moonbat party .. its getting so tiresome.
    Now this am 10/19 msnbc, the only current news I can get a 4A when I get up shows 11 soldiers killed in Iraq and Bush sitting with george abc stepheopolous comparing Iraq to VN so this is giving the lunatic media new crap to talk about for another 10 days at least.
    I for one will vote Conservative, not wasting my vote by staying home or voting libertarian but I am very worried.
    I’m thinking about getting my Xanax out again to use as a back-up if the dems get in as our last days will be upon us.
    As or Iraq, we aren’t getting anywhere with one arm tied behind the other, we aren’t allowed to fight it war the way it should be fought and I’d tell the Iraq goverment they have NOT been standing up, too many infiltrations from Iran and other areas being ALLOWED TO HAPPEN, TOO MUCH SUPPORT FOR THE HEZZIES from the leaders there, so I’m now for bringing our guys home now, warning the women and children and BOMBING THE EVERYLOVING SHIT OUTTA THE BAD AREAS THERE, after the Iranians have all settled in their new stronghold.
    We got too much shit happening here and in no. k with the little idiot turd wanting to do more tests, the illegals streaming over daily taking OVER our country and the dems poised to TAKE control.
    I’m sorry I am feeling this way, I really am but its time for us to BRING OUR GUYS HOME. NO MORE BLOOD SPILLED FOR UNGREATFUL LEADERS OF IRAQ.
    I am prepared to get a bad tongue lashing so let her rip.

    Comment by Drewsmom — 10/19/2006 @ 4:38 am

  17. I agree with you that the GOP may be able to “steal just enough seats to barely maintain control” of the Congress. Although I doubt you meant that literally.

    Comment by Gary Buell — 10/19/2006 @ 1:01 pm

  18. Hey guys don’t worry Diebold has more machines out there this time still with out a paper trails. As far as I know no new security fixes, so You all might actually win!!!! You know the machines like Repugs more than they like the DemoCraps.

    Comment by KuciNicH — 10/19/2006 @ 4:29 pm

  19. gary and kuc guy … repugs don’t steal votes, yall have that art down to a science, more dead voting than fill entire cemetaries and cut the crap about the Diebold machines .. gripe to your county commissions and the ones in charge of the voting, here in Ala. we use paper and mark em and then they slide thru the machine, the entire state votes that way, where the hell do yall live?
    President Bush did not order Diebold machines be mandatory .. go after the right people here a holes, not me.
    I was just stating my opionion which I hate making on Iraq and I am worried we may lose cuz yall cheat like hell in voting and you know it //// you outdo us everytime on that one plus you have the msm on your side to defeat conservatives and doom us all.

    Comment by Drewsmom — 10/19/2006 @ 6:38 pm

  20. Thursday Night/Weds Morning Links

    Good lawyers can always find an argument. Here’s one: Too fat to die. AOL news. Hanging is needle-free, I believe.How many people think that this is a real disease? Sounds like a crock to me. An infrared detoxifier? I sure hope tax dollars didn’t buy…

    Trackback by Maggie's Farm — 10/19/2006 @ 7:04 pm

  21. Quick you all, from Drudge, and then tell me this isn’t the way ALL the “intel” leaked damaging to the President the past 5 years has come out??


    Comment by Dale in Atlanta — 10/19/2006 @ 10:20 pm

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