Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Keep the populace alarmed

It appears that the Republicans have all but conceded the House of Representatives to the Democrats. What remains in contention is the Senate. Democrats there would have to pick up an usually high number of seats to take control and that was impossible -- until recently. The Theopublicans have become so unpopular that Democrats across the board are being given a boost.

Rasmussen polls also show that the number of Americans considering themselves Democrats is back on the rise while those saying they are Republicans has been declining. One year ago the Democrats were leading Republicans by just 1.5 points. The latest survey asking people which party they felt they were associated with showed the Democrats enjoying a 6.2 point lead. The numbers claiming no allegiance to either party has increased to 30.7%. So the independents are gaining on the Republicans and the Democrats hold the lead.

But among these three groups we find that most Democrats intend to vote Democratic while about a third of Republicans are considering bolting for the Democrats as well. And the majority of independents say they want the Democrats to win as well. Only the politically drawn districting that Republicans have put into place over the last few years is saving them from a total slaughter.

And even there they have some bad news to consider. Congressional districts are drawn up at the state level. The number of state legislatures that shift to the Democrats is not being followed very strongly. While the new districts don’t get drawn up for another four years a big swing to the Democrats in the state legislatures and in gubernatorial races will give them a stronger ability to draw districts boundaries more favourable to themselves. And that will shift more seats into the Democratic column.

In the Senate race in Virginia the big government conservatives George Allen has squandered his massive lead with racist remarks and dirty campaigning. He once had a 20 point lead but Rasmussen polls says that among likely voters he now trails Webb by 5 points. That is a swing of 25 points in a few months time. And this in spite of a campaign budget several times bigger than Webb’s.

Rasmussen doesn’t have current figures on New Jersey but other polls now indicate that the Democrat Bob Menendez is leading there. More recent polls in Tennessee indicate that Democrat Harold Ford, Jr is ahead in the race as well. In Montana Democrat Jon Tester continues to lead the race. If the Democrats gain these four seats they need just one more victory for control of the Senate. And that state will need to be Missouri but the race there is tied up. Republicans were hoping to pick up Maryland at one point but the Democratic lead there has grown and it is unlikely the Theopublicans can close that gap before the election.

God’s Own Party is hoping to terrify voters into backing them for another term of domination. They have gone into a full out effort to get out the message that if they vote Democrat the terrorists and the homosexuals (sometimes it appears Republicans think them the same thing) will get them. LIke a parent warning a naughty child “that the boogie man will get you if you get out bed” the Theopublicans are pushing a similar warning. As H.L. Mencken said, “the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed--and hence clamorous to be led to safety...” (And in honour of those comments we include a photo of Mencken today.)