A Coming Landslide
August 30, 2010
By Bruce Walker
It may seem odd for someone who recently warned conservatives of overconfidence to predict that the November elections may well produce a landslide unprecedented in the lifetime of many Americans. But the indicators of just such a tsunami seem to grow bigger and more persistent each day. Polling data differs depending upon which organization is conducting the poll. So it is no surprise that job approval for Obama is at one level in one poll and at another level in a rival poll. The trend lines of all polls, however, agree: Obama seems in free fall. Democrats who unwisely tied their political fortunes to this latest incarnation of the tired, old mantra of “change and hope” now find themselves in the backseat of a fast car driven by a reckless teenager.
The current generic congressional ballots, as well as the slower changing party identification polls, now favor Republicans and the advantage seems to grow bigger every day. Compounding that problem is the “enthusiasm gap” which have Democrats at the low end and Republicans at the high end, liberals at the low end and conservatives at the high end, which suggests that the vote on election day will be larger – perhaps much larger – than the six point difference which currently separates the parties.
Obama these days appears less like a smooth political operator and more like a tone deaf radical leftist who honestly does not understand why not opposing the construction of a mosque at Ground Zero offends such a large majority of Americans. When the pundits he listens to echo his surrealistic “tolerance of Moslems intent upon destroying the moral foundations of our nation, Democrat candidates outside leftist hothouse constituencies of San Francisco or Vermont can only cringe. Everything Obama does, everything his wife does, seems to show Americans more starkly how their vision of a Joyful Obaman Presidency differs from the reality of this disciple of Alinksy in power.
What does this mean in electoral terms? If trends continue, then Republicans could do more than just win the House of Representatives: they could pick up seventy seats or more, putting the House out of reach for Democrats for perhaps a decade or more. Dick Morris has suggested, and I agree, that many Democrat Senate candidates thought safe a few months ago may not be safe at all. Blumenthal in Connecticut may be the next Democrat in “real trouble.” Gillibrand in New York may too (L’affair du le Mosque may hurt her a lot.) Manchin in West Virginia may slip too. Wyden in Oregon? The numbers look good, until you realize that he ought to be light-years ahead of any Republican and he is not. Is Milkulski safe in Maryland? Is Schumer safe in New York? The more this class of Senate Democrat candidates look desperate, the more Republicans may be able to win stunning victories in even Maryland or New York.
How would Obama work with a Republican Congress that pushed again and again the very sort of low tax, small government, deregulatory proposals which would get the economy moving again? Barack Hussein Obama may be as bedeviled in last two years of his presidency as Hoover was from 1930 to 1932. If – a big “if” – Republicans hold fast to conservative principles and reject coy attempts by Obama to find middle ground with them, then the 2012 election could be as grimly predictable to Democrats as the 1932 elections were to Republicans.
Moving from the grand stage of Washington to the much smaller stage of state and local elections, the races in which Tea Party candidates – relative novices to electoral politics – are most likely to be on the ballot, the prospects for Democrats and liberals look even more frightening. The strength of Republican gubernatorial candidates suggests that Republicans will have a heavy majority of the governorships after November. With some wind at their backs, Republicans could end up with 35 out of 50 governorships, and all of the ten biggest states except New York and North Carolina.
A strong anti-Democrat wave could do much more damage to Democrats in state legislative races, where Republicans are already reasonably strong. If Democrats lose big state legislative chambers and governorships, then the redrawing of congressional districts and also state legislative districts will be in the hands of Republicans, meaning that Democrats will be in worse shape to win House elections in 2012 than in 2010.
Will November be the Waterloo of the Left? Nothing is certain, but conservatives have not been so angry or so networked or so active in ninety years. The left, by contrast, has never seemed so incompetent and unsavory as it is right now. More and more, it looks like a landslide is coming in American politics and, for the first time in the lifetime of nearly every American, conservatives may actually be able to actually govern our nation and bring our values into public life.