Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Again... The Democrats Have No Chance To Take Back The House, Not Even If Trump Is The Presidential Nominee


I knew one-term Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman at PS-197 in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn. Bernie had already moved on to Madison High School-- where we both went-- by the time we arrived at 197. He was a dweeb from a weird family of social climbers in an almost all Jewish neighborhood. His family switched to Episcopalian or Anglican or something like that. In later life, I've been told, he went back to his original Jewish faith. This week, Coleman, who was defeated by standup comedian Al Franken in 2008 when he ran for reelection, told NY Times reporter Alexander Burns that "If it were me and I were running, and Trump were going to be at the top of the ticket, I would disavow him."

Monday, Upstate New York Congressman Richard Hanna did just that. In fact, Hanna said he wouldn't vote for either Trump or Cruz if either is the GOP nominee. Easy for him, though; he's retiring from Congress in January. He told his constituents that he wants "a president that my children can look up to, and this campaign is beneath the dignity of the American people. Our unwillingness to push back when we hear remarks that are callous, intolerant and bigoted is hurting our party. It’s hurting our country.

"Before Trump had even declared he was going to run, it looked like the GOP was likely to lose the Senate anyone, just based on the fact that so many Republicans in blue and purple states looked vulnerable and few Democrats did. And the House looked safe for the Republicans; it still does-- primarily because if a corrupt, incompetent and totally debilitated DCCC.

The Democrats look like they have good shots to take back Senate seats in Wisconsin, Illinois, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Florida and Ohio and possibly North Carolina, Iowa and Missouri, while protecting their own vulnerabilities in Nevada and Colorado. If there were a wave election, something a Trump nomination could precipitate, Republicans could even lose Arkansas, Kentucky, Indiana and Arizona, which would mean that the Democrats's Senate majority would be protected from the expected reversal of fortunes in 2018 when the shoe is on the other foot when vulnerable Democratic seats in North Dakota, Virginia, Montana, Indiana, West Virginia Missouri and Florida are up and where Republicans could very well target Ohio, Wisconsin and New Jersey (the corruption scarred Menendez). In 2018 the only contest the Republicans would have to watch out for is in Nevada. The rest of their seats are all safe. But, big wins in 2016 would be a useful cushion.

The House would be within reach if a competent DCCC existed but there is no such thing and never will be while Pelosi is Democratic Leader. The one we have now will be lucky to not lose seats, let along make up a massive 30-seat deficit. Their usual ideologically-driven sub-par recruiting is worse than usual, with winnable district after winnable district being given up without a fight-- political malfeasance from California to New York and all places in between. So, yes, Trump makes it harder for Republicans down the ticket to win but it doesn't matter when the Democrats either have no candidate, a really bad candidate or are refusing to support good candidates who aren't DCCC zombies. So, as Burns pointed out, "While Mr. Trump would most likely draw throngs of white, working-class voters in Democratic-leaning states like Michigan and Ohio, he would also drive away women, nonwhites and voters with college degrees in conservative-leaning states like Georgia and North Carolina." The DCCC has weak no candidates in either Georgia or North Carolina to take any advantage of that. And even if their were opportunities in Ohio and Michigan, the DCCC had an extraordinarily batch of weak candidates if districts that would need great candidates to be competitive.
Democrats see Mr. Trump as increasing their chances, especially in diverse and fast-growing states like Arizona and Virginia, where the party often struggles to turn out Hispanic voters who can help its candidates. And the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is mounting a late push to stretch the political map by recruiting candidates in as many as 10 conservative-leaning House districts, in states like Florida and Kansas, where analysts believe Mr. Trump will harm Republicans.

The Democratic committee, eager to cut into the Republicans’ majority, has begun a large data project to model both support for and opposition to Mr. Trump. Meredith Kelly, a spokeswoman for the committee, confirmed that its data team was studying which of Mr. Trump’s ideas and comments would be most offensive to key voting blocs, and how best to project those themes in congressional races.
The theory is valid but DCCC candidates in those states-- Arizona, Virginia, Florida and Kansas-- are, for the most part, ghastly and where there is a decent candidate here and there, the DCCC is actively working to sabotage him or her in order to put in a candidate more amenable to the corruption and conservatism party leaders like Hoyer, Crowley, Luján, Clyburn and Wassermann Schultz thrive on. Candidates the DCCC is not supporting includes 17 of the 18 outstanding progressives on this list:
Goal Thermometer

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At 8:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not only will they not capture the House in 2016, they will likely lose any ground they may gain in 2018 with Clinton and her incrementalist, neo-liberal economics souring turnout. The Democrats just don't run on anything anymore except fear of Republicans or small-time, identity-based policies that don't really work as a national rallying point for the midterms.

Imagine if Democrats were running on trying to enact Bernie's plans in 2018. There should always be some big picture trophy policy Democrats should be running on, something that obviously helps the majority. Imagine if the Democratic Party was marching lockstep to try and get single payer passed rather than the minor tweaks Clinton is trying to sell as progress. The Democrats might have a chance to win a midterm if people thought they were going to actually benefit in the next two years.

The Democrats can continue to win the White House based on fear, so long as the Republicans continue to trot out horrible candidates. If Mitt Romney were making his 2012 run this year, I think he would probably trounce Clinton. We know Democrats don't turn out at as high a rate as Republicans when they aren't enthusiastic. I fear a recession in 2018 will ensure a Republican president because Clinton will likely never earn majorities in Congress and even then she won't do anything to help save the middle class.

At 10:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If Mitt Romney were making his 2012 run this year, I think he would probably trounce Clinton."

If Rmoney ran a more centrist campaign instead of denouncing a mythical 47%, he should have defeated Obama, whose legacy will be one of an administration promising to deliver what the people want only to kick them to the curb after the election and call them derogatory names. No administration facing a real candidate could ever win with a record like that!

Obama should have sent Rmoney a large bouquet after the election to thank him for running such a lousy and inept campaign and saving his job.


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