March 19, 2007

EBB'N EASIER:

Was '06 a Starting Point for Democrats or Was It Their High-Water Mark? (Stuart Rothenberg, 3/19/07, Real Clear Politics)

Probably the best way to show the Democrats' challenge next year is to look at what happened in 1996, when Republicans made the same kind of argument about allegedly vulnerable Democrats that Democrats are making today about Republicans who had a close call in November.

The accompanying table lists 46 Democrats who were elected in 1994 with 55 percent of the vote or less. Two years later, with Republicans salivating at their presumed opportunities and making a major effort to win most of those seats, Democrats retained 41 of those districts. Only two Democratic incumbents seeking re-election (out of 38) went down to defeat, while three other Democratic open seats flipped to the GOP. [...]

The 1994 election constituted a Republican tidal wave, which means that, by definition, it was an aberration. Two years later, the political environment returned to normal, and Democrats who looked ripe for the taking because of their narrow 1994 victories suddenly looked stronger.

In fact, those Democrats were stronger, in part because they had survived the difficult year and in part because the Republican challengers weren't as strong as they seemed without a stiff wind at their backs.


The particular problem for Democrats in '08 is not just the number of new seats they likely couldn't defend in a vacuum but that the top of the ticket will be such a drag.

Posted by Orrin Judd at March 19, 2007 7:22 AM
Comments

Which one will be in drag, Hillary or the Breck Girl?

Posted by: erp at March 19, 2007 7:48 AM

Breck girl.

Posted by: Dave W at March 19, 2007 9:59 PM
« 750 MILLION PITCHFORKS WILL DO SOME DAMAGE: | Main | THE REACH OF RUSH WITH THE SENSE OF REAGAN: »