The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Politics 101: Can Democrats Win?

Posted on | February 27, 2018 | Comments Off on Politics 101: Can Democrats Win?


During CPAC last weekend, several people asked my opinion of the chances of Democrats capturing a congressional majority in the fall. Obviously, I don’t have any clairvoyant powers. In October 2016, I was convinced that Donald Trump couldn’t possibly be elected. A month later, he proved me wrong. So I claim no special insight into future political events, mainly because I don’t know what’s going to happen between now and November. There might be a major terrorist attack or some other unpredictable event that could shift things one way or the other. Everybody says that the electoral map favors Republicans to maintain (and probably expand) their majority in the Senate, although it’s possible Mitch McConnell’s clown show could bungle away even a sure thing.

Never underestimate the power of Republican senators to screw things up, but still, given how many seats the Democrats are defending in November, not even Mitch is likely to blow this one. So let’s just count on the Senate to remain in GOP control. What about the House?

Historically, the party that holds the White House loses significantly in the first midterm election after the President’s election:

In the first midterm election for all but two presidents going back to 1946, the president’s party has lost U.S. House seats. Up until President Barack Obama, presidents with an approval rating above 50% at the time of the election lost an average of 14 House seats. Presidents with an approval rating below 50% lost an average of 36 House seats.

President Trump’s job approval is now 41.2% in the Real Clear Politics (RCP) average, but that’s not the only poll number that matters.

Consider the “right-track”/“wrong direction” question. As of today, the RCP average is 56.0% “Wrong Track,” 36.9% “Right Direction,” a 19.1% differential — a major improvement from the eve of the election in November 2016, when the number was 62.2% “Wrong Track,” 31.0% “Right Direction,” a 31.2% differential. Americans now feel much better about how the country is doing than they did before the election, and why shouldn’t they? The stock market is booming — pumping up everybody’s 401(k) value — the GOP pushed through tax cuts that are turbo-charging the economy, and the employment numbers are so good that some economists are beginning to worry about inflation.

Compare this situation to eight years ago. The economy sucked. Democrats led by Nancy Pelosi were promoting “Cash for Clunkers” and “green jobs” and ramming ObamaCare through Congress without a single Republican vote. The RCP “right-track”/“wrong direction” numbers on Feb. 26, 2010, were 34.8%/59.2% — a 24.4-point differential. Whatever people’s personal feelings about President Obama may have been, America objectively was in bad shape in 2010. Trump has never been as popular as Obama, but the country is doing much better, and this objective reality — making America great again, so to speak — is the best reason to suspect that Democrats may be disappointed in November.

Beyond this basic reality, there is also the fact that Democrat voters tend to be isolated in a few major urban areas and their leaders — well, they aren’t exactly mainstream heartland types:

California’s Democrats had their annual convention this week, working to figure out precisely what their agenda will be going forward. There are currently some serious schisms between the hard left and the more traditional elements of the party so they clearly have a lot of work to do. But all the policy talk went out the window when their featured speaker, Congresswoman Maxine Waters took that stage. The event quickly turned into an anti-Trump rally complete with chants and calls to figuratively drag President Trump out of the White House by force. . . .
Waters went on and on about Donald Trump for almost twenty minutes. Her theme was clear… everyone get ready for impeachment hearings. When it finished she was treated to several standing ovations and a chant of “Impeach 45” filling the entire hall.

If America elects a Democrat congressional majority in November, they’ll impeach the President, raise your taxes and confiscate your guns.

Is that what the American people want? Do they really want to put Maxine Waters and her Democrat friends in charge of Congress? My hunch is that selling this Kool-Aid in November won’t be easy. And have I mentioned that the Democrat Party is practically broke?

The Republican National Committee announced . . . it raised $12.4 million in January and has a total of $40.7 million cash on hand. . . .
The RNC also announced it had zero debt and said the total amount it had raised in the 2018 cycle was $144.9 million. . . .
The DNC . . . ended 2017 with $6.5 million in the bank and $6.1 million in debt.

Look, I’m not guaranteeing anything in November, but you can’t beat something with nothing. However unpopular Trump and the Republicans might be, they’re far more popular than Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters and the other kooks currently running the Democrat Party.



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