Creative Destruction

June 25, 2006

Why We Won’t Win

Filed under: Politics — Off Colfax @ 6:50 am

I've been doing a lot of thinking lately. (Had to have been a lot of thinking. Sure as hell wasn't doing a lot of blogging, was I? For that, my parenthetical appy-polly-ologies for the lackblog.) And more and more, I've been coming to the realization that we Democrats simply won't win the day come this November. Regardless of what we do.

Let me explain.

Ever read the phrase "Joementum"? Of course you have. All you need to do is flip over to Atrios' blog and you'll see it so much that you'd think Duncan has it on a hotkey. And you'll never read it in a positive spin, either. Hells, Lieberman-bashing has become an official sport over there on Eschaton. Why? Because he's close to the double-yellow-line (If he hasn't gone to the other side and become a Conservative Democrat.) that denotes left from right. And that line is what, to a political partisan of either stripe, also denotes right from wrong. (Of course, all this Joe-bash started when Lieberman joined up with the Gang of 14, along with my own senator Ken Salazar, in order to stop the nukular option.)

Now, Lieberman is far from being the only one that is the target of the progressive blogroll. This post by JEdmunds over on Pandagon (Via Neil's post on Ezra's blog, as I haven't read Pandagon daily since Jesse left.) points to two more bipartisan-leaning Democrats that are raising the ire of the far left: Maria Cantwell, the junior Senator from Washington, and Bob Casey Junior, the "chosen one" to go up against Rick Santorum in Pennsylvania.

So these three, with the probable addition of Lieberman's fellow Mod Squad member Robert Byrd, will have the brunt of the far-progressive wing's ire this year, with every erg of their power going to either unseating them or supporting third-party candidates instead.

And this is why we Democrats will not win the Senate this year. The progressive wing of the party has shown, yet again, that they have not learned the basic lesson of the Republican Revolution of 1994. Namely that the key to political victory is just like the principles of real estate: Party, Party, Party. (Also the creed of Fraternity Row.)

Only once a party has gained political power can they concern themselves with quibbling over who gets what slices of the partisan pie. Instead of buckling down and working on getting ahold of the pie in the first place, hard-core progressives like Atrios, the Pandagon gang, and a good majority of Kossack commenters will waste their energy by keeping their hands out for their big est possible piece before it's even decided whether or not we get that pie in the first place.

(Dammit. Now I'm hungry for pie. Once again, an overextended analogy bites me in the assets. A trip to Denny's for some old-fashioned apple is in order once I click Publish.)

(Oh wait. I can't go to Denny's. I forgot. I'm broke. Never mind. I'll suffer and just sit here cranking the Dropkick Murphys and eating ramen until dawn instead. But the moment any of you mention anything about baked goods, I sweartaBran I'm gonna to santorum all over you.)

All I can do is take comfort in the knowledge that, one of these days, the far-progressive wing is going to get the idea that togetherness is going to be the only way we'll get back into power. Unfortunately, what comfort I can gather from that is diluted by the knowledge that it took the Republicans over 30 years to come to the exact same conclusion.

And I highly doubt that we'll have a Gingrich to hold the battle-standard high, either. Which puts the TradeSports odds of 5-1 for a Democratic takeover of the Senate this year as one of the worst investments on the board.

19 Comments »

  1. Good analysis.

    I have to admit that over the last couple of months I have been depressed by the thought that the Democrats could well retake Congress this year.

    But they aren’t going to. Their inability to capitalize on the war and circular firing squad strategic plan are going to slaughter them.

    Which, actually, is problematic. I’m relieved that Nancy Pelosi will be continuing her search for relevance from the minority leader’s office, but it isn’t good for the Republicans to have such crappy enemies. I’m reminded of going to play pool with a work friend who was really tremendously good at the game – but when he played with us, he was only pretty good, because he only played as well as he had to play to win.

    I wish my party had competitors who made us play at a higher level.

    Comment by Robert — June 25, 2006 @ 3:06 pm | Reply

  2. The Dems probably will lose big in November. Ever since I could vote ( which hasn’t been that long) I’ve always voted a straight party ticket of Democrats. These last 2 years have really changed my mind.

    As I’ve become more and more politically aware and conscious both of my own polital leanings and what I think would be best for this country the less I think the Democrats stand for those things I believe in.

    Don’t get in a tizzy Robert, I’m not changing my voter registration card to Republican just yet.🙂

    But I will be changing it from registered Democrat to Independent and I can seriously see myself voting for more conservative/libertarian type candidates. Who is going to have a plan for Iraq and immigration is going to be high on my list of voter priorities.

    Comment by SBW — June 25, 2006 @ 7:01 pm | Reply

  3. Hey guys,

    Can you explain to this Brit how this ‘voter registration’ business works?

    Comment by Daran — June 25, 2006 @ 7:51 pm | Reply

  4. My enthusiasm for the Republicans is predicated on their being the lesser of two evils, and, if you’re going to come to the party, you have to dance with the folks that brought you. Might as well enjoy the dance, even if your date is kind of a jerk. I’d LOVE to see a better conserva-libertarian alliance arise that could govern.

    Voter registration is pretty simple. When you move to a new place, you register with the county’s voter registration unit. Sometimes this is an arm of the Secretary of State of your state, sometimes its organized some other way, but basically you show paper demonstrating that you’re John Q. Smith and you live at such and such address and they put you on the rolls. They tell you where your precinct is for voting, and where you go to actually pull the lever; usually a school or church. On election day, you go to the polls and tell the nice lady who you are and she looks you up and lets you vote. If you aren’t on the rolls, there are various ways you can still vote, but that’s the way most voters do it.

    In most states, though not all, your party affiliation plays into this. You register as a Democrat or a Republican or a Libertarian or a Green or whatever. Then, in addition to the general election, you get to vote in the primary – that’s where your party decides who it will run in the general. In some places, the primary is the real election; the general election is a foregone conclusion. Other places the primary is unimportant and its the general you have to win; it varies. A few states have open primaries where anyone can vote in (one) primary election, but most Americans don’t like that system.

    SBW’s statement that she’ll be switching to an Independent registration is significant because it indicates that her distaste for the Democratic party is so severe that she no longer wants even to have a voice in their decisions about who to run. Independent registration is a reduction in your power as a voter in most places, and when people are registering Independent it’s a good sign that there’s serious dissatisfaction with a party.

    Hope that covers your question, D. Although, I thought you were a Scot, not a Brit.

    Comment by Robert — June 25, 2006 @ 9:16 pm | Reply

  5. OffColfax (is that this blogger?) blames the Progressive Blog-Roll for calling the Dems out on their mediocracy. Is it really the fault of a bunch of bloggin’ yahooz, if the Dems don’t smarten up, act right, and be a genuinely Opposing Party?

    If they stand up to Bush they win. If not, the people who oppose Bush will by & large stay home. Just like when Dems lost the senate — that Jefford’s heroically spoon-fed them — in ’02.

    But is that the left-wing blog-role’s fault?

    Shit yes it is! The lefty blog-roll has the Power to give Dem leadership the ol’ screw-twist. Give them this choice: Offer Bush the worthy opposition he is so richly due.(Props, Robert. Brilliant.) Play to Win — or the lefty blog-rollers take steps to be sure the Democrats lose.

    Odd, that the Lefty-Blog is faced with a similar choice. Wield the power of your convictions. Or get Trounced, perhaps irrevocably.

    2008? Believe it when I see it. Our only time is Now.

    Great Blog Here — makes me think. Keep On.

    Best Wishes,
    Mike E

    Comment by Mike E — June 26, 2006 @ 12:10 am | Reply

  6. Actually, Mike, I blame the left-hand side of the blogosphere for attempting to drive through their own viewpoint at any cost. And any cost includes dividing the party with under 5 months to go before a decisive election with, as you put it, “the ol’ screw-twist.” They seem not to want the party to win the day, but their part of the party only to win the day.

    And that ain’t how you win elections.

    (Well, maybe you can win the Berkeley City Council seats that way. But it don’t play in Peoria.)

    Like Robert, I made my party affiliation choice by seeing the Democrats as the lesser of two evils. And partly like Robert, if there’s ever a liberal-tarian set of candidates, I’ll be crying their names with loud hosanahs and blaring trumpets.

    Comment by Off Colfax — June 26, 2006 @ 1:07 am | Reply

  7. Go, left side of the blogosphere! Self-destruct, self-destruct, rah rah rah!

    Er.

    What I mean to say is, as a conservative libertarian I certainly hope the Democrats are able to unify as a party and present a compelling and coherent positive message to the American people.

    Comment by bobhayes — June 26, 2006 @ 1:30 am | Reply

  8. I don’t know what, exactly, wins or loses elections, and I’m not convinced that you know, either. I think the “you must do what would match my idealogical preferences or you’re not serious about winning elections!” argument is a sham argument.

    And this is why we Democrats will not win the Senate this year.

    Your prediction is notable mainly for how safe and timid it is.

    Democrats currently hold 44 seats in the Senate, meaning they’d need an additional six seats to control the Senate. There are, at most, 9 vulnerable seats currently held by Republicans (and that may be over-optimistic). So to win the Senate, Democrats would have to win 66% of vulnerable Republican seats while not losing even one of their own seats. If the Dems lose only three seats this year, then that means they’d have to win 100% of vulnerable Republican seats to gain control of the Senate.

    So you’re blaming the fact that the Democrats won’t pull off this nearly-impossible electoral feat on progressives. That’s ridiculous. Why not blame progressives for the fact that fall follows summer, while you’re at it?

    Comment by Ampersand — June 26, 2006 @ 2:12 am | Reply

  9. ah, but I don’t think we disagree fundamentally…I am all for power-balance. I, too, take issue with the left-side of the blogosphere. But are they to blame for party devisiveness? I propose their viewpoint is equal in merit to the centrist’s. No? Perhaps the centrists are the ones ‘attempting to drive through their own viewpoint at any cost.’

    re: the ol’ screw-twist. By that, I mean the effective use of, well — Capital. Political Capital. The blog-left has some; honestly won, to boot. Alas, I don’t see them effectively applying it. But the Republicans will spend theirs.

    I hear the blog-left complain. About centrist democrats, who won’t take the risks neccessary to win. But what risks do the blog-left take?

    They want Dems to unify & stand for something. They’d do well to take their own advice.

    But what they’ve done till now…that, as you say, ain’t how you win elections. On that much, at least, we agree. And unless decisive action is taken — pronto — Dems will lose.

    What specifically do you propose? Do you know how to win elections? If so your voice will be a tremendous boon to your party. Who — with rare exceptions — pretty much don’t win diddly.

    Last question: is the lesser of 2 evils neccessarily?

    Great thread man, thanks. Colfax in Denver I presume? Lived at the Logan Court in the early 90’s…

    Comment by Mike E — June 26, 2006 @ 2:31 am | Reply

  10. Voter registration is pretty simple. When you move to a new place, you register with the county’s voter registration unit. Sometimes this is an arm of the Secretary of State of your state, sometimes its organized some other way, but basically you show paper demonstrating that you’re John Q. Smith and you live at such and such address and they put you on the rolls. They tell you where your precinct is for voting, and where you go to actually pull the lever; usually a school or church. On election day, you go to the polls and tell the nice lady who you are and she looks you up and lets you vote. If you aren’t on the rolls, there are various ways you can still vote, but that’s the way most voters do it.

    All very straightforward, and pretty much what we do here.

    In most states, though not all, your party affiliation plays into this. You register as a Democrat or a Republican or a Libertarian or a Green or whatever. Then, in addition to the general election, you get to vote in the primary – that’s where your party decides who it will run in the general. In some places, the primary is the real election; the general election is a foregone conclusion. Other places the primary is unimportant and its the general you have to win; it varies. A few states have open primaries where anyone can vote in (one) primary election, but most Americans don’t like that system.

    We don’t have anything like your primaries. Here its up to each party to make its own rules as to how its candidates are selected. Normally only that party’s members get a vote. It would also be considered very improper for State aparatus, such as voter registration, to be used for party purposes.

    Independent registration is a reduction in your power as a voter in most places, and when people are registering Independent it’s a good sign that there’s serious dissatisfaction with a party.

    So does independent registration mean that you don’t get to vote in any primary, except in those states that have open primaries?

    Hope that covers your question, D. Although, I thought you were a Scot, not a Brit.

    That’s a bit like saying “I thought you were a Texan, not an American”.

    Comment by Daran — June 26, 2006 @ 5:18 am | Reply

  11. Amp, let’s look at it down the line, shall we?

    John Kyl (R) AZ — Mostly safe. Kyl’s almost as fundamentally popular as McCain these days.
    Dianne Feinstein (D) CA — Safer than a kiddie ride at Disneyland.
    Joe Lieberman (D) CT — Only safe if the party gets behind him and pushes. If Lamont wins the primary, Joe won’t push for him in the general.
    Thomas Carper (D) DE — 65% safe. I don’t know as much about Delaware politics as I’d like.
    Bill Nelson (D) FL — Only thing that’s making this safe is who the GOP chose to throw against him. If they had a better set of candidates, we could worry about this.
    Daniel Akaka (D) HI — A Republican winning a state-wide race in Hawaii? Such a rare thing has happened in the past, but not this time.
    Richard Lugar (R) IN — Knock out one of the Senate’s only Eagle Scouts? Not bloody likely.
    Olympia Snowe (R) ME — If it wasn’t for her party affiliation, most of the Democratic party would be cheering her on. So she ain’t gonna leave.
    Paul Sarbanes (D) MD — Retiring. Seat open and vulnerable. That Oreo incident in November against Steele will turn around and bite us. Count on it.
    Teddy Kennedy (D) MA — ‘Nuff said.
    Debbie Stabenow (D) MI — 70% safe. Could easily swing the other way.
    Mark Dayton (D) MN — Retiring. Seat open and extremely vulnerable. Unless a miracle happens, there will no longer be a monopoly for the Democrats for Senators named Kennedy.
    Trent Lott (R) MS — I heard that parts of Mississippi are trying to change the motto to “In Lott We Trust.” That’ll make him hard to beat.
    Jim Talent (R) MO — Vulnerable to McCaskill’s challenge. Very vulnerable.
    Conrad Burns (R) MT — Odds between him and Tester are 6-5 and pick ’em. Otherwise known as highly vulnerable.
    Ben Nelson (D) NE — Cornhuskers like ’em moderate, at least when it comes to Democrats. Ricketts may be a serious challenger, but in the end, he’ll only be a rash.
    John Ensign (R) NV — Regardless of how they love Harry Reid, Nevadans aren’t gonna gamble on a replacement. Even if Jimmy Carter’s son jumps in.
    Robert Menendez (D) NJ — The NRSC is drooling over this one like a starving Doberman over a 10-lb. roast. Unfortunately for them, there’s a thick sheet of glass in the way keeping them from getting it. So unless something breaks, this is Menendez’ race to win.
    Jeff Bingaman (D) NM — Swing states like to swing both ways most of the time, and New Mexico is no exception. 85% safe.
    Hillary Clinton (D) NY — Don’t make me laugh. She’s about as safe as Davy Jones’ Locker. (Not the PotC movie.)
    Kent Conrad (D) ND — Originally on the target list, Conrad is considered a safe seat by all but the most optimistic of GOP strategists.
    Mark DeWine (R) OH — Mostly vulnerable, and partly due to the scandals that have rocked Ohio politics. But Brown’s not a sure thing either. Yet again, a 6-5 and pick ’em race.
    Ricky Santorum (R) PA — Ummmm… No. Much as I’d love to see him be vulnerable, it’d take a time-bomb to get him out this election. 10-1
    Lincoln Chaffee (R) RI — Ummm… No. He is vulnerable, but not very vulnerable.
    Bill Frist (R) TN — Retiring. Seat is safe.
    K.B. Hutchinson (R) TX — Not bloody likely. Again, highly safe.
    James Jeffords (I) VT — Retiring. And Bernie Sanders is probably one of the best bets on the board to take it officially into D territory.
    George Allen (R) VA — Vulnerable. How vulnerable he is, exactly, is a matter of debate. Webb will give him a run for his money, and maybe even beat him up for it.
    Maria Cantwell (D) WA — Ummm… No. She may get into tougher territory the closer one gets to Idaho, but the population center is still the coast.
    Robert Byrd (D) WV — Another painfully safe seat.
    Herbert Kohl (D) WI — And I said Byrd was painfully safe? This will be so painful, it’ll make a root canal seem like a stubbed toe.
    Craig Thomas (R) WY — There is no safer seat on the GOP roster than this one.

    That makes, by my analysis, a possible Dem pickup in the Senate of between +4 and +6. And what was the magic number you referenced? +6.

    What was the impossibility again?

    If the Democrats lose in Maryland and/or Connecticut, that will put it out of reach entirely. And they ain’t doing much to create positive attention for their candidates these days, are they.

    Between pushing the alienation of Joe Lieberman and (What the hell were they thinking?!?) putting Kweise Mufame on the ticket, the progressives are already seriously damaging the chances of the party to sieze the day on that first Tuesday of November.

    And as for blaming progressives for fall following summer, well… Folks blame the GOP for the entirety of global warming, don’t they? Makes about as much sense, if you ask me. Zero.

    Carpe jugulum.

    Comment by Off Colfax — June 26, 2006 @ 5:54 am | Reply

  12. Not impossible, but nearly so. This CBS news analysis does the math accurately (emphasis added by me):

    The Democrats need only six seats to take control of the Senate, and picking off six [Republican] incumbents is possible. But they have 18 seats of their own to win. And of those 18, there are seven the Democrats have to keep a close eye on, as they could potentially force them to spend a lot of money to defend those seats.

    So while they only need six seats to take over the Senate, they really need 13 victories out of the 15 in this combination — they have to go 7-for-7 in their own column while picking up six out of eight Republican seats.

    It’s not impossible for the Dems to go 13 for 15 in the contested races. But it’s extremely unlikely. Your blame-the-progressives argument only makes sense if the Democrats would be likely to win the 13/15 if not for progressives, and that’s simply not the case. And your inability to do basic political math doesn’t give me much confidence in your ability as a political forecaster.

    * The “oreo” incident is probably fictional. But it says a lot about the fairness of your analysis that you blame progressive democrats even for things that probably never happened.

    * It’s interesting that you list Chaffee (R) as a safe seat – I’d say there’s a 50% chance the Republicans will lose that seat, since Chaffee is running neck-and-neck against Laffey in the Republican primary. If Chaffee loses the primary, the Republicans will probably lose the seat.

    In fact, Chaffee shows that the kind of thing you’re talking about doesn’t happen only in the Democratic party: A centrist incumbent being in danger of losing his seat in the party primary to someone better aligned with the party base.

    The difference is, if Lieberman loses in his primary, then Lamont should be able to easily beat the Republican nominee whatsisname. The only danger to this seat is Lieberman himself, because the only way Democrats will lose the seat is if Lieberman runs a spoiler campaign as an independent.

    Between pushing the alienation of Joe Lieberman and (What the hell were they thinking?!?) putting Kweise Mufame on the ticket, the progressives are already seriously damaging the chances of the party to sieze the day on that first Tuesday of November.

    This sentence only makes sense if you’re using “progressives” as a code word for “black voters.” Mfame isn’t on the ticket yet (that primary doesn’t happen until September, I think), but if he wins the primary and then loses the seat, it will be because centrist Dems have worked so hard at alienating black voters in Maryland, and have insufficient party loyalty to support a black left-winger in the general race once he’s won the primary. If centrist dems in Maryland are stupid enough to do that, it’s not progressives’ fault.

    Folks blame the GOP for the entirety of global warming, don’t they?

    No, they don’t. They do blame the GOP, correctly, for denying the facts and for opposing policies to mitigate global warming. But nice strawman.

    (Edited by Amp to change “if [Mfame] wins” to “if he wins the primary and then loses the seat.”)

    Comment by Ampersand — June 26, 2006 @ 11:16 am | Reply

  13. In most states, though not all, your party affiliation plays into this. You register as a Democrat or a Republican or a Libertarian or a Green or whatever. Then, in addition to the general election, you get to vote in the primary – that’s where your party decides who it will run in the general. In some places, the primary is the real election; the general election is a foregone conclusion. Other places the primary is unimportant and its the general you have to win; it varies. A few states have open primaries where anyone can vote in (one) primary election, but most Americans don’t like that system.

    Another point about party registration: Registering as a member of a party doesn’t obligate you to support that party financially, at the polls, or in any other way. I’m registered as a Democrat, although I frequently vote third party and occasionally even Republican in local general elections.

    One dirty trick sometimes practiced in areas where the general election has some real meaning but the primaries are controversial as well is for sympathizers of one party to register as the other and vote for the candidate they believe would be weakest in the general election. (They, of course, vote for the other candidate.) For example, in the last presidential election, a person with basically Republican sympathies might have registered as a Democrat then voted for Sharpten in the primary or a Democrat might register as a Republican and vote for Buchanan or write in Pat Robertson, etc. Personally, I think an open primary or even a parlimentary system would be fairer.

    Dianne Feinstein (D) CA — Safer than a kiddie ride at Disneyland.

    I love this analogy.

    Comment by Dianne — June 26, 2006 @ 11:45 am | Reply

  14. One dirty trick…

    Cough, cough. But nobody here would ever have done such a low thing. (Shuffles feet.)

    Comment by Robert — June 26, 2006 @ 12:31 pm | Reply

  15. Amp,

    But it says a lot about the fairness of your analysis that you blame progressive democrats even for things that probably never happened.
    The Oreo incident did not stop when they got done tossing their metaphorical cookies, you know. Look at the responses from the African-American-progressives for a ton of ready-made soundbites for the Steele campaign to use against whomever comes out of the primaries. The entire thing was completely mishandled and, even if the event itself was fictional (Such judgement I don’t immediately accept, but will agree that it is possible.), the rest of the story wasn’t. (Apologies to Paul Harvey.) For remember, in politics, it’s not the event, but the spin. And they’ve got more spin for this one than at the solar equator.

    If Chaffee loses the primary, the Republicans will probably lose the seat.
    From my reading of the numbers and trendlines, that’s a fairly large “if” up there. My money’s on Chaffee winning the primary by an easy 6 points. (AKA, outside the margin of error.) If anything, the last two presidential elections have taught me to not simply look at the polls, but to analyse the under-poll. (Note: Someone remind me to write a post on this topic in a few weeks. Might be of interest to some.)

    And your inability to do basic political math doesn’t give me much confidence in your ability as a political forecaster.
    Tell me then, where’s my math wrong? Did I miss a decimal place somewhere? Should things fall the way I’m seeing them, the races to bring the cheerleaders for are Maryland, Connecticut, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.

    Should those fall the right way, a net gain of 6 is entirely possible. And those races falling the right way are also well into the realm of the possible.

    Should Lieberman get forced into an early retirement, he will investigate his options as a spoiler. Why? Because he’s an asshole. Or, to cite Harry Truman (I think.): He may be a son-of-a-bitch, but he’s our son-of-a-bitch. And if keeping the asshole son-of-a-bitch in the Senate is the way to keep the hopes of victory alive, we keep the asshole son-of-a-bitch in the Senate. For appeasing one arrogant ego-trip political whore while in pursuit of a higher goal is far from the worst thing a party can do. (I could say something about the Executive Branch right now, but that would be superfluous.)

    Hells, I’m suprised that Bob Hayes hasn’t jumped in and said something about my partisanship calls on Conrad and Menendez.

    So seriously. Even taking your corrections to my math into account, that leaves a +6 gain even more in the realm of the possible, as your corrections add in a possible loss for Chaffee. But should Lieberman chooses to play spoiler and Steele uses his already available ammunition, it reduces to a possible +5, which preserves the status quo.

    Where exactly did my math go wrong?

    But nice strawman.
    Thanks, but I already knocked it down before you posted. Reread the rest of that part.

    Comment by Off Colfax — June 26, 2006 @ 2:46 pm | Reply

  16. There is every indication that Democrats will increase the number of seats that they have in the House and in the Senate, and elsewhere (probably even Colorado), in 2006.

    You know that things are going bad for the Republicans when Republicans give a Republican controlled Congress lower approval ratings than Democrats do.

    The Democratic party naturally favor the left, just as the GOP naturally favors the right wing of the political spectrum. Democrats hold no monopoly on trying to bring down those who don’t support the party. Hell, Joel Hefley, conservative Republican from El Paso County in Colorado’s 5th CD was ousted from his ethics committee seat and basically encouraged to retire based on his willingness to show some backbone on ethics issues with his own party.

    But, what people say on Daily Kos and what the party is actually doing are two different things. Colorado would not be running people like Bill Ritter for Governor if they did. And, Colorado primary voters wouldn’t have put Ken Salazar in the Senate, and John Salazar in the House if they did. The Montana Democratic party is similarly not putting forward people who could be considered hard core progressive caucus members, and is winning.

    Connecticut is not Colorado (key differences: Connecticut is not square and has good rail access to New York City). Running a Ned Lamont against a Joe Lieberman in a state that went decisively for Kerry and Gore makes sense. Running the same kind of candidate in Colorado would not.

    The GOP didn’t start running hard core conservatives in Pennsylvania and Connecticut and Maine. It started running them in the deep South and went from there. Democrats, likewise, need to get safe votes out of safe states, and moderates out of purple states. A strategy that maximumizes Congressional power needs both components. The increasing popularity of a 50 states strategy among even Kossacks, is a recognition of the fact that both elements are necessary.

    Just as the Democrats in Colorado were wise to run John Salazar in CD 3, they would be fools to run a John Salazar clone in CD 1 (Denver). All politics is local. It isn’t just about party, party, party.

    Comment by ohwilleke — June 26, 2006 @ 7:01 pm | Reply

  17. The Kansas Republican Party chairman just changed affiliations to the Democratic party.

    And, who was the darling of the blogosphere last time around: Stephanie Herseth, one of the most conservative Democrats in the House, from South Dakota. She won. I personally gave her money because of Kos appeals. Bloggers recognize that reality isn’t the same all over the nation.

    Comment by ohwilleke — June 26, 2006 @ 7:08 pm | Reply

  18. Cough, cough. But nobody here would ever have done such a low thing. (Shuffles feet.)

    “Canary, what canary?” asks the cat, picking a stray feather from his teeth…

    Comment by Dianne — June 26, 2006 @ 8:55 pm | Reply

  19. […] No, Duncan. I tried to warn you. […]

    Pingback by Pay It Forward « Creative Destruction — October 20, 2006 @ 1:08 am | Reply


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