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View Diary: Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 1/17 (323 comments)

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  •  Starting to feel the smallest bit nervous... (5+ / 0-)

    ...about the midterm.

    Not very nervous, just the smallest bit.

    But that's a move on my part from being completely dismissive last year.

    I always said and still say the off-year by and large doesn't matter.  So the polling back then I dismissed, and I saw nothing, and still mostly see nothing, that's truly traumatic enough to cause a damaging wave against us.

    But now it's the New Year, the election year, and polling starts to matter.  It's still very early, but we've had some recent cycles where the numbers didn't really move dramatically during the election year, the cake was baked relatively early.  When Charlie Cook wrote his column in February or so in 2010 that Democratic strategists were telling him even that early that we would lose the House, it proved accurate simply because public perceptions seemed set by then.

    But of course, in those recent cycles, there were events shaping public opinion that weren't easy to change.  A recession with stubborn unemployment is a national trauma that drives people to anger.  So does a quagmire of a war, like Iraq.  And in 2012, perceptions of both Obama and Romney and the economy were set relatively early, and OFA's internal polling showed very little movement all year.

    I tend to think that if by the first day of spring we haven't seen some small improvement in Obama's job approvals, back up closer to break-even levels, then we could be looking at a slightly worse midterm than a purely neutral year.  The reality is that a true wave election in the House simply isn't possible because there is very little left in Democratic hands that the GOP can win.  But for state legislatures, Governorships, and U.S. Senate races, there is more peril.

    Ultimately what we need is a smoother year of health care implementation, combined with continuing improvement in the economy.  That U6 rate really matters, if we can get that down a full point, that would really help.

    45, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

    by DCCyclone on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 06:53:16 AM PST

    •  The Senate (7+ / 0-)

      Really worries me.  I never thought we could take back the house this early in the decade without a big wave and that wasn't likely outside of a 2 week stretch in Sept/Oct.

      I think AR, SD & WV are gone at this point.  And now I'm really worried about NC, MT and a few others.

      If the GOP manages to eek out 6 wins in Senate races, the last 2 years of Obamas Presidency will be the biggest lame duck session ever seen in our lifetime.  I doubt anything will get done, which yes is not a major change from now but I think it will be a difference.

      32/D/M/NY-01/SSP&RRH: Tekzilla

      by Socks The Cat on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 06:56:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  It will be more than a lame duck... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gabjoh, Sylv, wadingo

        it will be a bloody nightmare as Pres Obama will have to veto shit left and right, and will have to agree to sign some things or wear the "he's the obstructionist President" not to mention he'll be blamed for any shutdown if he doesn't sign the odious budgets.  

        Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

        by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:30:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  if Repubs do that (6+ / 0-)

        we'll come screaming back in 2016 with a good number of senate pick-ups.

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:07:14 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  The Biggest Worry About The Senate..... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gabjoh

        ....is that Democratic exposure is such that even a moderate GOP wave would yield a gain of 10-11 seats.  Everybody focuses on the big seven, but between open seats in Iowa and Michigan and unexpected vulnerabilities in Colorado and New Hampshire, this thing has the potential to get really, really ugly.

        •  I really disagree here (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gabjoh, nimh

          I don't think the GOP win Iowa or Colorado even in a 2010 scenario.  Their candidates are simply of too low quality.  And it would take a 2010 style wave to win New Hampshire or Michigan.  I really see 8 as an upper bound for the Rs.

          The far bigger problem for us is that the GOP could easily win 6 seats in a neutral election.  Even in a 2012 environment the GOP has a 50/50 chance of winning back the Senate.  The Rs have SD and WV in the bank, with AR and MT leaning their way barring a major blunder.  Senate control really comes down to keeping NC and AK (which is the most unpredictable race in the country).  Or Landrieu winning w/o a runoff, as I don't think Landrieu has a shot in hell in one if Senate control is on the line.

          Racism, misogyny, and homophobia should NOT be protected by the Constitution.

          by TeaBaggersAreRacists on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:11:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  No, that's not realistic w/a "moderate" wave (6+ / 0-)

          It would take a big wave to flip all those.

          That's not going to happen without the economy suffering an unexpected shock.

          45, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

          by DCCyclone on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:13:05 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Agreed (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DCCyclone, James Allen, JBraden

            I have a hard time seeing Shaheen and Udall actually losing but just having them on the board with Iowa and Michigan makes defeat in red states more likely as resources are stretched.

            "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

            by conspiracy on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:21:47 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Agreed...plus (0+ / 0-)

            as we all know, the GOP has blown many winnable Senate races in the last two cycles through awful nominees, awful campaigns, or both.  I think it's a pretty safe bet to say that they'll blow at least one or two more this time around.

            Netting two pickups in 2012--when we were widely expected to lose seats and maybe the Senate outright--gave us a cushion that should not be "misunderestimated".

            Proud progressive stuck in George J. "Mike" Kelly's PA-3 (where birth control is tantamount to Pearl Harbor).

            by JBraden on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:32:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Can I make you feel less nervous? (10+ / 0-)

      Granted, I have no way to predict the future, but we are having Mark Levin tell Republicans to boycott the State of the Union, we have the RNC and the NRCC begging them to not pass another Ryan Plan-lile budget, and of course, a more than decent chance of a fight over the debt ceiling. That's not to mention that the ACA and its rollout looks to be working better and better as well as the likelihood that a new crop of Republicans compares Social Security and Medicare to the any sort of genocide or human atrocity or tells a rape victim she should just lie there and enjoy it.

      I also feel like we need to go on offense in some way--say, as I suggested yesterday, by campaigning on a payroll tax cut to help job growth. The economy is still rough, and virtually nobody on the other side is talking about ways for the government to help.

      You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

      by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:03:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The debt ceiling is the only thing you cite... (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sylv, James Allen, wadingo, bythesea, JBraden

        ...that I think really has a chance to matter.

        The other thing that can matter is FY15 approps, if Boehner loses control of his conference and they go to war right before the election!  It's unlikely, but hell the shutdown last year was unlikely and still happened  because House Rs are a bunch of goddamn morons.

        Other than that, we just need better health care implementation and a better economy.  Those things are much more doable in my mind.

        45, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

        by DCCyclone on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:33:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, I don't see anything happening with either (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DCCyclone

          There are about 20 complete morons among the House Republicans, who would sabotage the party's potential November just to take some idiotic stand, but I think the majority of Republicans, even those who supported the shutdown the last time, are salivating at the chance of picking up the Senate. I also have a theory that Boehner might be a better strategist than people give him credit for - he allowed the shutdown to happen last year because he knew that it would likely be forgotten come the following November, but there's no way he'd let it happen close to the election.

          Nothing the House Republicans have done since the shutdown have indicated they will be as suicidal in 2014, unfortunately.

          •  We probably won't get (0+ / 0-)

            anything truly earth shattering, but as the NM link says, quoting a Republican strategist, merely talking about staging some nonsense protest over the debt ceiling and a government shutdown hurts their numbers. If the negative response we saw to the ACA's troubled rollout fades away, why wouldn't we be on more equal footing?

            You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

            by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:15:02 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Payroll tax pays for SS though... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Sylv, jj32, wadingo

        so it would need an off-set to keep funding SS.  I think the upcoming SOTU will be a big deal in setting the Dem agenda for the next year and hope Pres Obama and Dems go economic populists and push minimum wage hike.  Also Pres really needs to hard sell Obamacare successes - though I suspect he will with the Presidents guest gallery filled with ACA enrollees and what Obamacare is now doing for them.  

        Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

        by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:40:44 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's really accounting changes, (0+ / 0-)

          if I understand the issue correctly, just as it was the last time the payroll tax was cut. Besides, if we were in a position to do something like this, it'd be easy to pair it with a staged tax increase on something else. It'd be nice to be able to have this discussion with the electorate, but I think all we need to do is to promise to fully fund Social Security no matter what, and people will move on.

          I'm all for other ideas about stimulus, but as I said yesterday, I think this one is easy for all Democrats to campaign on.

          You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

          by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:49:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  The Kind Of Economic Growth We Saw In Q3..... (0+ / 0-)

        ....if it continues throughout 2014 with requisite rising job numbers and reined-in energy costs, will be what could yet save Dems (even though I still think a loss of five Senate seats and a 50-50 Senate is a best-case scenario at this point).  But I think we need to always be paranoid about the next shoe dropping with Obamacare.  The public deeply disapproves of it and that impression is baked in to the point that I don't see it changing in 10 months even if the headlines remain positive or neutral.  And given this level of public disapproval and the fragile nature of the law in its early stages, there remain landmines everywhere that could reignite the forest fire of last 2013 as it pertains to Obamacare.  In other words, absolutely never rest easy that the Obamacare forest fire has been contained.   Maybe it has, but common sense suggests there will be more obstacles ahead, with an opposition party ready to pounce on any shortcomings and exploiting an already skeptical public.  

        •  Which polls indicate the public deeply disproves (0+ / 0-)

          of ObamaCare?

          I don't doubt that the Republicans will at least entertain the idea of erecting more obstacles if/when it's possible, but at this point, I am not sure what's left. If there's a change that can be made to fix a problem that doesn't undermine the law, won't the onus be on the Republicans to work with Democrats to implement such a change? Many Republican governors and their legislatures have already rejected Medicaid expansion, but that works both ways, in that it creates a group of people directly missing out on something.

          I'm not saying the worst is over, but at least until the election, I am not sure what else might go wrong. Hell, if anything, the shift in the language they are using, indicating that they missed their chance to completely overturn the law, that it's basically here to stay, is pretty significant. Maybe it won't matter if/when they control everything in 2016 and they basically gut it, but my guess is that the longer it's been in effect, the harder it is to take back. And that, more than anything else, makes 2010 and 2012 worth it.

          You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

          by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:08:27 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Has The ACA Been Above 40% in Any Recent Poll??? (0+ / 0-)

            I was hoping RCP would have a polling average of the ACA but couldn't find one.  The recent polls I've seen have all been in the 30s for approval rating, although admittedly I haven't been watching polls too intently lately so I may have missed an uptick.  As for a bump in the road on ACA potentially damaging Republicans if they're seen as obstructionists, I suppose that's possible depending upon the situation, but when public opinion turns against something, it's hard to incur wrath against other people who oppose it as well.  When the public turned on the war in Iraq, there wasn't a lot of fury directed towards Democrats who opposed the troop surge.  Imperfect analogy but I really don't see a scenario where Kay Hagan, for example, benefits by saying her opponent is not being helpful enough in his proposed fixes for the ACA.

            I'm gonna stay out of the prediction business this election cycle in terms of seats gained or lost because the variables are greater than usual with the unpredictability of the ACA rollout, but when I start seeing Mark Udall and Jeanne Shaheen with leads within the margin of error a la February 2010 Russ Feingold, it starts approaching the time when you have to start mapping out worst-case scenarios if only in your mind.

        •  the public disapproves (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Skaje, nimh, JBraden, askew

          but now it's because a good portion disapprove from the left. If you take that plus supporters then only a minority disapprove from the right.

          What other shoe could drop? I don't know how it could get worse.

          ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

          by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:33:47 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Didn't the insurance backstop shoe not drop? (0+ / 0-)

            or is that for another time?

            “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

            by KingofSpades on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:35:41 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I feel (0+ / 0-)

              like I know what you're referring to, but can you be more specific?

              You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

              by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:50:56 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  An initial problem (0+ / 0-)

                getting all the enrollments to the insurance companies on time.

                “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

                by KingofSpades on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:52:36 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I thought you might have been (0+ / 0-)

                  referring to something else, based on a rumor or a misunderstanding about the government subsidizing the insurance companies if XYZ and didn't happen.

                  You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

                  by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:01:30 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  yep (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            nimh, JBraden

            Overall approval is almost always around 40% and disapproval around 50%, and consistently about a fourth of the people who disapprove say it's because it doesn't go far enough.

            The numbers were worse before they fixed the website, but from what I've seen they're back to about what they were before the site went live.

            SSP poster. 44, CA-6, -0.25/-3.90

            by sacman701 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:38:01 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Senate definitely not looking good... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jj32

      WV, SD are surely lost, Montana looks more than likely lost.  Begich probably loses as well, it will come down to Landrieu being able to survive and NC GOP craziness saving Hagan.  

      OTOH I think Gov and State Lege races will not be effected by any National political climate like 2010.

      Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

      by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:22:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  On the other hand.. (6+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        IndyLiberal, madmojo, jj32, wadingo, JBraden, askew

        we have good odds of taking GA and KY. My money is on us taking both.

        Landrieu will very likely hold on. She's got a mountain of cash she's sitting on, and she's personally quite popular. MT, well, we'll see what we'll see there. I'm not sold on Begich losing at all. I think he's even money at this point.

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (TBD - Likely Celia Israel-D)

        by Le Champignon on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:39:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm somewhat optimistic about Nunn in Ga... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aamail6

          I think we'll be heartbroken by a close Grimes loss in Ky as I can't see Kentucky ultimately voting to give away a potential Senate Majority Leadership in McConnell.  

          Ga will come down to who wins the GOP primary.  

          Nunn could be our spoiler/majority savior though - Dems should really look into pumping a lot of money in there in organization and ground game.  

          Glenn Greenwald promotes far-right fringe extremist group The Oath Keepers - https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/statuses/377787818619064320

          by Jacoby Jonze on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 07:45:51 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  What about Hagan? (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mark27, Avenginggecko, wadingo, aamail6

          I think she's even money like Begich is.

          •  I give her (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            madmojo, JBraden

            about 80% chance of hanging on, mostly because I think Tillis will be the nominee and he's currently "generic Republican" in the minds of most voters. Plus, the Kochs have been hammering her with ads for the past couple months, and she hasn't had much of an opportunity to fight back.

            We'll see her poll numbers rebound once the campaign season kicks off and she has a singular opponent she can paint with a brush. And honestly, I think if Tillis is the nominee, that 80% goes to 90%.

            NC isn't a red state, it's a purple state, and I'm still clinging to the theory that Dems are going to have a pretty good year in November.

            TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (TBD - Likely Celia Israel-D)

            by Le Champignon on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:06:58 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  if you're going by the numbers now, yeah (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            madmojo, JBraden

            if you're projecting to November, I still think she's got a lot of campaigning she's going to do and she'll pull through. Doesn't Tillis need to get through another legislative session?

            ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

            by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:10:15 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Sounds About Right..... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            madmojo

            If everything goes right with the economy and ObamaCare, and there are no campaign gaffes, I'll go along with Hagan and Begich being even money.

        •  if we're losing Arkansas, Montana, and (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DCCyclone, wadingo

          any of our other races we haven't already mostly written off, the year is probably too bad for us to make gains. That is unless the Republican GA-Sen nominee completely implodes.

          ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

          by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:13:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I would argue... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BKGyptian89, wadingo, aamail6

            Georgia is a demographically more favorable state for us at this point than a number of states where we currently have senators, including Arkansas, Montana, West Virginia, Alaska, and Louisiana.

            Pragmatic progressive. Oregonian, Cascadian, and American. Keeper of the DKE glossary.

            by SaoMagnifico on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:15:09 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  yes, but we have fewer white voters (5+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Mark27, wadingo, gabjoh, BKGyptian89, JBraden

              and the midterm will probably not have sufficient turnout of non-whites. It's more racially polarized than most of our other states. I assume more than all, including Louisiana. That's why we need a disaster Republican nominee. Which I think we have a decent chance of getting. I have not been impressed by the ability of Kingston and Gingrey to avoid saying stupid shit.

              ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

              by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:22:25 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't know (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              JBraden

              Alaska is a weird one. It's always favored moderate legislators. Murkowski is probably the most moderate Republican Senator, and Begich is among the most moderate Democratic Senators. It should be pretty favorable terrain for a guy like Begich.

              AR has a lot of ancestral Dem ties, and the Clinton brand has likely sustained the AR Dem Party far longer than it otherwise should have. AR isn't significantly different from, say, MS in terms of its god'n'guns culture, yet AR Dems held on while MS Dems have become practically extinct.

              MT is better terrain even than GA. Remember, Obama damn near carried MT in 2008, and it's had two Democratic Senators since 2006. It also reelected Tester in a very neutral year in 2012.

              WV is like AR, except its strength is in the unions. If it weren't for Obama completely screwing up the "war on coal" narrative and refusing to consider the impact of environmental policies on people with real jobs, it'd still be a Democratic stronghold.

              And LA has been happily ticket-splitting for ages.

              GA's problem is the polarization of the state, much like MS. What makes GA more attractive than MS is the simple fact that the white population is starting to acquire people from outside the state who are more moderate, thanks to GA's modernized economy; and also that the black population is growing relative to the white population; and also that the older Demosaurs are giving way to a more moderate, less racist and conservative young population.

              But I'd say GA is a tougher get than, say, WV right now. The only reason we're looking at a pickup opportunity there is the fact that we have both Nunn and Carter at the top of the ticket, and the fact that the Republicans are screwing the pooch on their nominees. We should be able to have a "last gasp of the Demosaur coalition" this November. WV, on the other hand, is looking so bad because Capito is by far the best the Republicans could do in that state, and we're plumb-out of Manchins to bury them with.

              TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (TBD - Likely Celia Israel-D)

              by Le Champignon on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:58:20 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Agreed..... (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              BKGyptian89, aamail6

              I'd give Nunn better odds of getting Georgia at this point than of Grimes getting Kentucky, contrary to Rothenberg's updated predictions.  Not sure we're quite there yet to be able to win a Senate race in Georgia in a midterm year, but Georgia in 2014 strikes me as similar to where Virginia was in 2002.

      •  I don't see Begich losing (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        madmojo

        Rs in Alaska are deeply divided and Begich holds Ds solidly and leads with Is. I see Landrieu holding, too. I tyhink SD is leaning R and Montana is swing.

        WV chances may improve since Rs have ties to Freedom Industries that could prove deeply damaging in the months ahead.

    •  I've been a bit more pessimistic too nationally (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DCCyclone

      here I think we're okay short of another 2010. Obviously Kitzhaber and Merkley don't have serious opposition. Neither do I count the tea partiers running against Kurt Schrader as serious (the more prominent of them lost to his ex-wife in a county commission race in 2004, and she always has performed worse than Kurt). I think probably we hold on to the state house even if it turn the wrong way by a bit, and even though we only hold the state senate by one seat, I think we're automatically picking one seat up where a popular incumbent retired in a D+7 district, so we can afford to lose a seat, and I don't see us losing any of the seats we held in 2010 either.

      ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

      by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:03:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think you're worrying too much (6+ / 0-)

      The ACA sign-ups are getting better month by month. In all honesty it was the stupid website problem and the media acting like rabid dogs like they are, talking about it non-stop, because they want something to write. This is a game to them.

      I always believe and still do we'll have a neutral tear like 2012. Dems will make gains in the House, but will not take it. And Dems will lose a handful of seats in the Senate, but will not lose it. Our real succes will be in the Governor races.

      In all honesty you should be encouraged with the meeting Obama have with Senate Dems on Wednesday, when they are focus in keeping the Senate in Dem hands like a laser beam.

      NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

      by BKGyptian89 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:05:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  re: the meeting (0+ / 0-)

        I'm curious what you meant by that. Was there news that should bring us encouragement?

        TX-17 (Bill Flores-R), TX Sen-14 (Kirk Watson-D), TX HD-50 (TBD - Likely Celia Israel-D)

        by Le Champignon on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:00:04 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wadingo

          It means he's hell bent on keeping the Senate. He usually don't do things like this. He's not a guy who enjoys politicking. He planning to ratchet up fundraising appearances for DSCC and DCCC.

          It was on Hardball the other day, on how he planning for the 2014 elections.

          NY-9/NJ-10; Russians can give you arms but only the United States can give you a solution. -- Anwar Sadat

          by BKGyptian89 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:18:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Senate races in red states are a killer (7+ / 0-)

      I think the House is more of a wash and gubernatorial races should tilt Democratic. Basically, 1986 redux. But things change.

      "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

      by conspiracy on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:09:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I Was Thinking 1986 As Well.... (0+ / 0-)

        ...but most frightening is that the Dems gained all those 1986 seats with an incumbent President at well above 50% approval.

        •  That's not frightening, twas just a different era (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wadingo, Mark27, jncca, David Jarman, JBraden

          Back then results weren't so linear because the parties were still ideologically much more internally mixed than they are today.  Realignment was still in process, and was completed only at the Presidential level.  It had not yet filtered down to U.S. Senate elections.

          Now is different because voting is much more linear, with far more people voting for or against a party's candidates based on partisan leanings or their then-current opinion of the President.

          45, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

          by DCCyclone on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:18:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Or rather than "linear," the term I should use... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            wadingo, gabjoh

            ...might be "vertical integration" in voting.

            My voting is vertically integrated, Democrats all the way.  Same for everyone here.

            But even among swing voters, they stick with the same party up and down much more than they used to, even though that doesn't translate to sticking with the same party from one election to the next.

            45, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

            by DCCyclone on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:19:42 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Not really (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          James Allen, Skaje

          Republicans were exposed because of all their wins in 1980 just as Democrats have to defend the 2008 wave this year.

          "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

          by conspiracy on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:25:20 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  The most important question is (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lordpet8

          HOW did they gain those seats?

          Trends without mechanisms to back them up are just coincidences.

    •  Remember when we thought we'd lose seats in 2012? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BKGyptian89, Avenginggecko, JBraden

      But we actually gained two?  Yeah, that won't happen this time of course, but remember that Republicans don't seem to think before they speak very often.  All it takes for their chances to go way down is to talk about how rape isn't necessarily a bad thing, or that some women deserve it... or that Obamacare is bad because more poor people will live and bring us all down.  Even in a midterm those things make headlines.

      •  Look at the states where the competitive races (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nimh, lordpet8

        were in 2012.  Except for Montana and North Dakota, they were all in blue/purple states.  In 2014, they are all in red, often dark red, states.  

        The Ds are defending 7 states that Romney won, with 6 of them where Romney won by 10+.  The two states where we are playing offense are Kentucky and Georgia, which Obama lost by 20+ and 8% (but has a much more R electorate in midterms).
        And these are the kind of states where Todd Akin can win a race against a D.

        Racism, misogyny, and homophobia should NOT be protected by the Constitution.

        by TeaBaggersAreRacists on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:21:02 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I would put Missouri in there too (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aamail6, lordpet8

          Brunner or Steelman would have given McCaskill much more trouble.

          "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

          by conspiracy on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:28:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I suppose Indiana too (0+ / 0-)

            But Indiana/Missouri are not on the same level as a Louisiana, Arkansas, Kentucky, or West Virginia.  (And I'm totally unconvinced by the argument that some of these states are still D at the local level, as anyone associated with Obama even loosely is just totally unacceptable to the majority of voters in that state.)

            Racism, misogyny, and homophobia should NOT be protected by the Constitution.

            by TeaBaggersAreRacists on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:36:49 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

              •  Hell, they didn't just support it, (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                madmojo

                they voted for it.

                I feel pretty confident that Republicans--either through awful candidates, awful campaigns, or a combination of the two--will blow at least one winnable Senate race this year, just as they blew so many in the past two cycles.

                Proud progressive stuck in George J. "Mike" Kelly's PA-3 (where birth control is tantamount to Pearl Harbor).

                by JBraden on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 08:51:43 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  you're right that IN is different (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              madmojo, aamail6

              Indiana is much more Republican than any of those states except maybe Louisiana. Other than the 2008 fluke it is much less likely to elect Democrats statewide.

              ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

              by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:39:08 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I'm not sure Indiana's changed all that much (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                TeaBaggersAreRacists

                like Louisiana or Arkansas have. It was always center-right to begin with. Democrats are in trouble in the state, but that's more a matter of timing in that 2010 let Republicans lock in gains. They'll still vote for us, but it's harder because we struggle to develop a bench.

                You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

                by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:04:33 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  Indiana is more conservative than it is Republican (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                lordpet8

                Until Mitch Daniels, we controlled the Governor's mansion for 16 years. We had the Attorney General's office from '93-'00. Evan Bayh. Joe Donnelly. Glenda Ritz. Majority of the congressional delegation for 4 years. Majority in the State House for 8 years since 2000. We came within 3 points of the Governor's office again in 2012, with very little attention paid to John Gregg. And that's not even mentioning the "fluke" of Obama winning in 2008.

                Hoosiers are more than willing to pull the lever for Democrats, as long as it's one that ideologically fits us.

                25, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

                by HoosierD42 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:05:41 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  compared to the other states, though, (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  lordpet8

                  Indiana has long been the reddest Midwestern state east of Minnesota, going back decades. I mean at the presidential level alone before 2008 you have to go back to 1964, and before that 1936, 1932, and 1912. Basically years when Democrats won everything. It has long been a lone island of red. It is historically Republican.

                  ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

                  by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:13:00 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  But we also have a long history (0+ / 0-)

                    of decent statewide victories. So yes, we've been red federally for a long time. But you know that's not the whole story.

                    25, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

                    by HoosierD42 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:17:10 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I don't disagree with that (0+ / 0-)

                      but we were talking relative to certain other states which have a much greater history of voting for Democrats, aside from probably just Alaska.

                      ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

                      by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:36:34 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  Obama got 43.85 percent in 2012 in Indiana. (0+ / 0-)

                    Considering that it was simply not contested like it was in 2008, isn't that good, even if that's the result of efforts from 2008 still paying off, Obama being from a neighboring state, or something else?

                    When was the last time before 2008 that it was contested? There might have been plenty of good reasons to ignore it compared to, say, Ohio, but ignoring it wouldn't help us.

                    If HRC decides to contest the state in 2016 and gets within, say, 4 points, maybe contesting it will become a more regular part of a Democratic campaign.

                    You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

                    by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 11:41:26 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Before Obama I couldn't tell you a single Prez (0+ / 0-)

                      campaign that targeted Indiana.

                      25, Practical Progressive Democratic Socialist (-9.38, -8.51), Gay, IN-02 - Defeat Wacky Jackie!

                      by HoosierD42 on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 12:05:27 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  FDR 1936? (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        lordpet8

                        Indiana was then considered a swing state, with much of the Democratic vote coming from the rural southern part of the state, and Dems were probably scrambling for all the votes they could find since it was by no means clear that Roosevelt would win nearly as many states as he did (note the much circulated Literary Digest poll which pointed to a Landon win.)

                        38, MD-8 (MD-6 after 2012) resident, NOVA raised, Euro/Anglophile Democrat

                        by Mike in MD on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 12:15:42 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  Exactly my point. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        HoosierD42

                        There'd be more of a reason to target the state if we didn't have an Electoral College, but even though we do, I still think there's reason to target it.

                        You're a Constitutional conservative. I'm a Constitutional conservative. Who isn't a Constitutional conservative? We are all proud Constitutional conservatives. Ted Cruz in 2016!

                        by bjssp on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 12:24:57 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

    •  What worries me about Obama's approval rate (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      markhanna, nimh

      is that I dont really know what can be done to improve it.

      No more controversies/mistakes regarding ACA would be great, but that's a legacy issue. If it's working(and I think it will), we wont know for a couple of years, and certainly GOP wont admit it's working until at least 2017, when Obama is out of office.

      Anything foreign policy related, especially the Iran deal, is similar. There is more downside than upside. In the most optimistic  scenario,  they get a comprehensive deal with Iran, but again, we wont know if it worked for a couple of years, as we see if they actually uphold the conditions of the deal.

      The only two things that could boost Obama's approvals this year:

      The economy. It seems like it is improving and has been for a while. The vast majority of the data has been good, but it's troubling that it hasnt seemed to have affected Obama's approval at all.

      Immigration reform: I'm skeptical that this gets done this year, but if something at least somewhat comprehensive(at least a pathway to legalization) gets done, then it's a substantive, and probably political victory, for the president.  

    •  We already knew 2010 was going to be bad by now (8+ / 0-)

      Scott Brown, the Tea Party, the huge rallies against the ACA. The writing was on the wall there.

      Just a few months ago, Democrats swept all three statewide races in Virginia.

      Alex Sink may pick up a Republican held district in Florida.

      ACA news is vastly, vastly improving and the people are starting to realize the law isn't the devil incarnate.

      Democrats are rebounding in generic house polls.

      And like someone said, in 2012 at this time we thought we'd lose seats. We ended up gaining.

      2010 really f*ked with Democrats' heads. Phew.

      •  didn't we win some special elections (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aamail6

        in 2010, too, though?

        ...better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity, than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference. -FDR, 1936

        by James Allen on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:35:59 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  We may have (can't recall) (0+ / 0-)

          But that's only part of the equation. When looking at the big picture, we are at worse looking at a neutral year for our party (as of now). That could get better or worse depending on what happens over the next 10 months.

          It was clear we'd get routed in 2010 by now.

          •  The favorability gap between the parties (0+ / 0-)

            Looks less favorable to Republicans than it did in 2010. That comes with becoming part of the problem as opposed to offering a solution.

            "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

            by conspiracy on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 10:54:01 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  PA-12 helped tamp down the narrative (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Avedee

          “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.” -The Doctor

          by KingofSpades on Fri Jan 17, 2014 at 09:45:37 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

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