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Here are 10 observations about the results yesterday.

1). Utterly meangingless, but it looks like Obama will become the first President reelected with less votes than he won in his first election

2). The odds of us taking back the House in 2014 are very steep. In most midterm elections, the president's party loses seats, and those exceptions that exist (1998 and 2002) theyv'e only gained a couple. There's also never been a wave (i.e. 15 seats or more) favoring the presidents party in a midyear. It's impossible for me to imagine any scenario, short of a huge scandal, where we win back the House in two years. 2016 seems like a better bet.

3). On that note, I think its time for Nancy Pelosi to quit. She was a good speaker, but her reputation is too damaged among centrist voters we need to recapture the House.

4). Is anybody else amazed at the poor quality of the Republican Senate candidates? I'm not just talking Mourdock and Akin, but candidates that looked good on paper like Rehberg and Thompson and Berg were just disasters. It's pretty clear if the GOP hopes to win the Senate in 2014, they have to go beyond the "grumpy old man" candidate.

5). Jon Ralston is God, again. And I eagarly await adtnext's theories on how Heller squeezed out another term.

6). I would not make a bet on the Senate for 2014. We have lots of vulnerable seats. But we can't underestimate the Republicans ability to sabotage themselves.

7). Most gratifying wins: Heitkamp and Tester (neither of which I predicted), and Warren. On the House side, I was happy about Allen West, Joe Walsh and the New York wins.

8). Hardest losses: Richard Carmona, for sure. He made it closer than anyone thought he could. Steve King and Michelle Bachmann returning was also extremely disappointing, especially the later considering how close it was.(and come on Iowa, elect a woman to Congress already. Geez)

9). I'm amazed at how for we've come as a country on gay marriage in 10 years. Good for us!

10). I wasn't as excited as the rest of you about Jim Matheson. He's going to have to be super conservative the next two years to represent this district, and I'm not sure how much he will differ from Mia Love. I didn't like the woman's politics, but I did like her background. Still Matheson's a survivor - I'll give him that. And if Matheson mounts a strong challenge for the Senate, his win will definitely be worth it.  

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Comment Preferences

  •  6) (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fox Ringo, MichaelNY

    What are the D/R numbers for Senate in 2014?

    Your request has bad syntax or is inherently impossible to satisfy. --httpd_err400form

    by Bob Novak Douchebag of Liberty on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:12:47 AM PST

    •  Dems will defend 20, GOP 13 (1+ / 0-)

      I'm not as downbeat as markhanna in our 2014 prospects. The map looks really static, so pick-ups seem unlikely, but so do a lot of losses.

      Alaska will be the GOP's best bet, but they can teabag themselves again. Louisiana and North Carolina are their next best pick-up opportunities. Arkansas and Montana will probably be competitive, but Pryor is well-liked and Dems just cleaned up in Big Sky country. We'll have to watch states like South Dakota (Johnson), West Virginia (Rockefeller), Michigan (Levin), and New Jersey (Lautenberg) for retirements; these states could have competitive races depending on the candidates.  It's a stretch, but perhaps Dems can make a run of Texas, Georgia, and Maine (cross your fingers for a Collins retirement).

      24 ~ AZ-01 ~ that flagstaff dude on SSP

      by Fox Ringo on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:58:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Re #10 (4+ / 0-)

    Matheson's new district is no redder than his old one- in fact it has a higher Obama '08 percentage. He might shift a bit right, but he will certainly differ plenty from the odious Mia Love (she'd probably be in my Top 10 Worst Congresscritters list by the end of 2013 were she elected).

    Male, 22, -4.75/-6.92, born and raised TN-05, now WI-02. "You're damn right we're making a difference!" - Senator-Elect Tammy Baldwin (D-Madison)

    by fearlessfred14 on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:48:08 AM PST

  •  1) is interesting (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, WisJohn, atdnext

    My theory is, Presidents either do a good job in their first term and get reelected by a bigger margin, or they don't do a good job and are voted out of office. It's very hard to thread the needle in the middle.

    For Obama, it's not that he did a bad job, but that the problems he faced were so grave, that we're still only partially out of them, but rising expectations led to disappointment.

    •  Which really makes it a pity that he's barred from (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Berkeley Fred

      seeking a third term, if the economy improves and everything's looking rosy in 2016. But that would provide a good platform for another Democratic candidate (probably not Biden, though).

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 11:34:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  On a lot of important issues (0+ / 0-)

      He absolutely did do a bad job.  Of course, even on those, he's no worse than any Republican would have been and better than most.  And on a whole host of issues, he did a pretty good job.  Restoring some American diplomatic credibility (which is amazing when you consider he did it in the context of ramping up drone strikes and assassinations, and wrapped around the invasion of the sovereign territory of a nominal ally).  Stemming the collapse of the economy, though he was too timid to actually turn it around and unwilling to take on the bad actors to punish them or prevent a repeat.  Finally coming around on gay rights.  And, of course, the big one - Supreme Court Nominations.  Both of his picks look to be solid.

      "And the President of the United States - would be seated right here. I would be here. And he would be here. I would turn - and there he’d be. I could pet ‘im." - Lewis Black

      by libdevil on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 02:07:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Looks like we upgraded the House too (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, NM Ward Chair

    I just got the following from Emily's List.

    The U.S. House will reconvene in January a more diverse and inclusive body with 15 (and counting!) new pro-choice Democratic women, due in no small part to your steadfast backing of Elizabeth Esty, combat veterans Tammy Duckworth and Tulsi Gabbard, Michelle Lujan Grisham, Gloria Negrete McLeod, Cheri Bustos, Joyce Beatty, Julia Brownley, Lois Frankel, Suzan DelBene and Grace Meng, first Asian-American to represent New York in the House.

  •  Giving Up (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    markhanna, MichaelNY

    Apparently, I struck a nerve. Once again, I apologize. I never intended to seem like I was criticizing you.

    As far as taking back the House goes, it does seem like the steep odds inject a sense of defeatism in some. Not you, necessarily, markhanna, but enough people that it hurts us. In a lot of places where we aren't hurting badly at all levels, as we are in a lot of Southern states, we aren't suffering from a lack of good candidates or a shift against us. We're just running into the natural problems, like incumbency and gerrymandering, any party out of power faces. The only thing we can do is to try harder and harder until we win.

    Melissa Bean is certainly the exception rather than the rule, but she was hardly running in a swingy district in a particularly great year for her party when she defeated Crane. Not everyone will face someone like Phil Crane or end up with Bean's money (the second time), but given the sheer number of turds in the Republican caucus and our expanded fund raising reaches, I'm sure a few people can give them a run for their money, at the very least.

    By itself, districts and situations like the one Bean was in won't be enough to take back the House. But just a handful of wins would get us closer to that point.

    "The election of Mitt Romney and a supporting congress this November would be a...disaster for America. Think of the trainwreck that has been the Conservative government in Britain since 2010. And square it."--Brad DeLong

    by bjssp on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 02:52:36 PM PST

    •  Makes sense bj (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, bjssp, jncca

      The only thing I'd say is that we are likely to win some seats, like the one Bean won way back when, in isolation in 2014, but I just don't see a chance to take back the House, barring a Mark Foley type scandal and cover up

      Also, I apologized to you on another thread. Sorry I'm touchy today. Lack of sleep from watching election returns. I get what you're saying.

  •  I'll have more... (6+ / 0-)

    Later this week. But since you gave me this shout out, I'll give you a sneak preview. Here's what happened here in Nevada:

    1. Once again, we had enough Obama voters "stopping at the top" to cost a few of our down-ballot candidates the election (like Shelley).

    2. While Shelley tried to contain "Kidney-gate", she could have done better in simply discrediting all that stupidity... Or maybe not, since the House Dems on that panel were so willing to throw her under the bus.

    3. I know some folks here have been saying another candidate would have done better... So why didn't he/she just run? Once Ross Miller and Catherine Cortez Masto turned down DSCC pleas, Shelley was the only serious candidate left standing.

    4. And remember that despite the nonstop "Tea Party, Inc." smear campaign on Shelley, Heller only edged her by 1% and with 46%. It really shows how difficult it's becoming for Republicans to win statewide.

    5. And with Obama's comfortable win statewide, Steven Horsford's surprise thumping of Danny Tarkanian in NV-04, and Democrats' almost surprise save of their State Senate majority, they all confirm that Nevada will indeed remain a Blue State.

    •  Thanks -good analysis (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, MichaelNY, NM Ward Chair

      Cant wait for the full report. While you didn't specifically say she was a bad candidate, it sounded like she could have handled the faux scandal a bit better.

      I still don't get what the Dems on the ethics panel was thinking

    •  Thanks for the post mortem (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      nimh, jncca, CF of Aus, Audrid

      Can I ask something of you for the next cycle, though? You are always so optimistic about every NV race you cover. Would you be willing to give us more balanced reporting in advance of the next election? I would respectfully submit that you don't need to cheerlead so much on DKE, in my humble opinion.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 04:50:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  some people are natural optimists or pessimists (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY, CF of Aus, Audrid

        Bjssp and Atdnext and SaoMagnifico are on one end, and Mark27 and Jacoby Jonze on the other, for example.

        19, CA-18 (home), CA-13 (school)
        Socially libertarian, moderate on foreign policy, immigration, and crime, liberal on everything else.
        UC Berkeley; I think I'm in the conservative half of this city. -.5.38, -3.23

        by jncca on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:07:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The problem (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CF of Aus, Audrid

          is that atdnext, in spite of all the wonderful and enthusiastic detail he reports for us, has proven his pre-election predictions to be unreliable, and I think that's because he hasn't been willing to give us straight-up predictions, rather than because he's not capable of doing so - atd, please forgive me if I'm misjudging you on this. He was right about Reid, but he was wrong about Dana Titus in 2010 and he was wrong about Shelley Berkley this year. If he stopped cheerleading so much and spoke soberly about their chances and their strengths and liabilities, he could increase his credibility a lot.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 10:23:34 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I wouldn't (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY, Audrid

          classify SaoMagnifico as a natural optimist. He was very pessimistic about certain seats that ended up just fine (AZ-09 and RI-01 for example). No offense to him, just pointing out that his "bias" isn't a "house effect," if you will...

          Living in Kyoto-06 (Japan), voting in RI-01, went to college in IL-01.

          by sapelcovits on Thu Nov 08, 2012 at 06:51:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

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