|The following are "independent expenditure polls" performed for the the DCCC in October 2010 and posted on the DCCC blog. Here's how they did.Poll (10/26, CA-20): Rep. Jim Costa 47%-Andy Vidak 41%.|
Actual Result: Undecided, Vidak currently leads 51%-49%.
The poll appears to have gotten the winner wrong and to have overestimated the Democrat by about 8 points.
Poll (10/18, AL-2): Rep. Bobby Bright 51%-Martha Roby 39%.
Actual Result: Roby won with 51% of the vote.
The poll was wildly off on both the winner and the margin of victory. Ouch.
Poll (10/18, AR-1): Chad Causey 44%-Rick Crawford 42%
Actual Result: Crawford won by 9 points, 52%-43%.
The poll got the winner wrong and was off on the margin by 11 points.
Poll (10/11, NC-07): Rep. Mike McIntyre 52%-Ilario Pantano 41%.
Actual Result: McIntyre won by 8 points, 54%-46%.
The poll got the winner right and was pretty close on the margin of victory
Poll (10/11, HI-1): Rep. Colleen Hanabusa 48%-Charles Djou 44%.
Actual Result: Hanabusa won by 6 points, 53%-47%.
The poll got the winner right and was within 2 points on the margin of victory.
Poll (10/11, NC-11): Rep. Heath Shuler 54%-Jeff Miller 41%.
Actual Result: Shuler won by 8 points, 54%-46%.
The poll got the winner right, overestimated the Democrat's margin of victory by 5 points
Poll (10/11, IA-3): Rep. Leonard Boswell 49%- Brad Zaun 41%.
Actual Result: Boswell won by 4 points, 51%-47%.
The poll got the winner right, overestimated the Democrat's margin of victory by about 4 points
Poll (10/11, AZ-5): Rep. Harry Mitchell 46%-David Schweikert 39%.
Actual Result: Schweikert won by 9 points, 52%-43%.
The poll was wildly wrong on both the winner and the margin of victory.
Poll (10/11, PA-15): Charlie Dent 45%-Rep. John Callahan 43%
Actual Result: Dent won by 15 points, 54%-39%.
The poll correctly predicted the winner, but was wildly off on the margin of victory
Poll (10/11, IL-14): Rep. Bill Foster 48%-Randy Hultgren 38%.
Actual Result: Hultgren won by 6 points, 51%-45%
The poll was wrong on the winner and off on the margin of victory by 16 points.
Poll (10/4, NY-20): Rep. Scott Murphy 51%-Chris Gibson 38%.
Actual Result: Gibson won by 10 points, 55%-45%.
The poll was wildly off the mark, getting the winner wrong and also the margin of victory by 23 points. Wow.
Summary: These 11 polls were all over the place, performing well in several cases but abysmally poorly in others. Of the 10 races that have been called, the polls got the winner right in 5 races and wrong in 5 races (and probably another one as well). Margins were wildly off the mark in several races as well. In sum, I wouldn't bet the ranch - to put it mildly - on DCCC "independent expenditure polls."
UPDATE: A reader emails me to point out that at least some of this could have been the result of "selection bias," in that the DCCC "would only release the favorable polls and not the unfavorable ones, so you get a bias towards the Democratic candidate." What do you all think?
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Posted by Lowell at 8:38 AM
Friday, November 5, 2010
|First, here is how Peter Daou explains the "Triangle."|
Looking at the political landscape, one proposition seems unambiguous: blog power on both the right and left is a function of the relationship of the netroots to the media and the political establishment. Forming a triangle of blogs, media, and the political establishment is an essential step in creating the kind of sea change we've seen in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.Simply put, without the participation of the media and the political establishment, the netroots alone cannot generate the critical mass necessary to alter or create conventional wisdom. This is partly a factor of audience size, but it's also a matter, frankly, of trust and legitimacy...In sum, as Nate Wilcox and I explained in our book, Netroots Rising, "a story that managed to 'close all three sides of the triangle - press, bloggers and elected officials' would dramatically impact the public debate," while "any story that only closed one or two sides of the triangle would have diminished impact."Let's look at the 2010 election results from a "Daou Triangle" perspective. First, recall that in 2005-2008, Democrats had a strong "Triangle," fueled in large part by opposition to the Iraq War and the Bush Administration on a wide variety of issues. The narrative, conveyed by all three legs of the "Triangle" - corporate media, new media, the political establishment and candidates - was all about George W. Bush's deep unpopularity, a strong desire for change by the American public, the Hurricane Katrina debacle and specifically the Bush administration's incompetence/callousness in handling it ("heckuva job!"), Republican scandals (Tom DeLay, "K Street," Jack Abramoff, Mark Foley, etc.). Given all this, the progressive blogosphere - aka, "the leftosphere" - was strongly united against Bush and the Republicans, as were political candidates (Jim Webb, Paul Hackett, Ned Lamont, many others) and even, I'd argue, the corporate media.
Clearly, anger and intensity were on the Democratic side during the 2005-2008 period, with Republicans increasingly demoralized and divided. Out of this came "movement" candidates and campaigns, not the least of which was the Jim Webb for Senate "Draft" and campaign right here in Virginia in 2006. With Webb's 14,000-strong "ragtag army" and a constant drumbeat of George Allen's 97% voting record with George W. Bush, Webb did what many thought was impossible back in 2005 - defeat the invincible George Allen and take back the U.S. Senate for the Democrats.
The 2007-2008 presidential campaign season demonstrated the same themes as 2005-2006, but even more intensely. Adding strength to the anti-Republican, pro-change "Triangle" narrative was a newly collapsing economy, with a recession officially beginning in December 2007 and a frightening financial meltdown in September/October 2008. The end result of all this - a perfect firestorm against Republicans and for Democrats, an incredibly strong progressive "Triangle," and an overwhelming victory for Barack Obama and the Democrats in November 2008.
Flash forward to November 2010, and the situation couldn't be more different. What happened? Follow me to the "flip" for that analysis.
Posted by Lowell at 8:34 AM
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Thanks to great work by NRDC's Rob Perks, we can dispose of the theory that Democrats' votes for clean energy/climate legislation -- which Republicans demonized as "cap and tax" (despite it being their own idea!) -- hurt them at the polls on Tuesday. In fact:
...a whopping 84% of Democratic representatives who voted for the House climate bill won their elections yesterday. (This does not include four races that are still too close to call as of this writing.) On the other hand, nearly 60% of those who voted against the bill went down in defeat. (This excludes two races that were not decided as of this writing.)Here in Virginia, Glenn Nye voted "no" on ACES (and also "no" on health care reform) and lost on Tuesday. Gerry Connolly voted "yes" on ACES and won on Tuesday. On the other hand, Rick Boucher and Tom Perriello voted "yes" on ACES and lost on Tuesday. In the case of Perriello, it's extremely unlikely that vote had anything to do with his defeat, as you barely even heard it mentioned by the Hurt campaign.What about Rick Boucher? Now, that's an interesting case - possibly the proverbial "exception that proves the rule?" - and one worth looking into further. My guess is that Boucher was hurt somewhat by his vote for "cap and trade" in "coal country," but he was hurt even worse by his failure to explain what role he played in that bill - watering it down and larding it up with the coal industry wish list; basically, doing what the coal industry corporate overlords wanted, then getting little if any credit (or support) from them for doing so. Ouch.
P.S. I'd love to see this same analysis for health care reform.
UPDATE: Statistical analysis backs up NRDC's case, big time.
|Has anyone else noticed that the Democrats are already screwing the pooch for the 2012 elections? While we should rightly be humbled after Tuesday's losses, we should not be buying into this self-proclaimed Teapublican mandate bullsh*t.Failing to Finish Off the 2010 Elections|
While Democrats are busy trying to figure out what went wrong, how to fix it, or just kissing up to the non-existent mandate, the Teapublicans are busy trying to convince the American People that the American People really did give them a mandate. They're trying to make us feel good about our new purchase after the sale. That's smart marketing, especially when the American People, as a whole, really didn't buy the product in the first place.
ATTENTION DEMOCRATIC LEADERS: Get out there and start convincing the American People that they just got hoodwinked by a bunch of extremists. In sports proper "follow through" is coached constantly and in the aftermath of the election the Teapublicans are doing just that. Unfortunately Democrats are actually helping them follow through instead of disrupting it.
Giving into Teapublican Demands
Democrats are already giving in to the Teapublican demands before they've been sworn in. For example, Harry Reid on tax cuts for the upper income brackets: "If we need to work something out with the people who are really rich, I'll have to look at that."
ATTENTION SENATOR REID: You are still the MAJORITY leader. Were the Republican leaders in the early 2000s, who held very slim margins, talking about caving in to Democratic demands? Hell No. Grow a pair or turn over leadership to someone who already has them. Er, make that a Democrat who has a pair. Given the current mentality I wouldn't be surprised if the Democrats in the Senate simply handed leadership to the Teapublicans. Jeesh.
Talking about Compromise
Democrats have been (foolishly) trying to compromise for the past two years and look what it got us. Democrats watered down a number of bills with Republican demands only to have them a) vote against the bills and b) demonize the Democrats for those same bills. Do our Democratic leaders really think that the Teapublicans mean it when they say "compromise"?
ATTENTION EVERYONE WHO DOESN'T ALREADY KNOW: Compromise means one of two things to the Teapublicans: "NO" or "Do it EXACTLY like I say and I might vote for it. But I probably won't until a conservative is in the White House."
The only way to make Tuesday's losses worse is to help set up the Teapublicans for victories in two years. And Democrats are doing just that. Doh!
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
|I'm not sure if Obama is going to get to serve another term. In fact, if things keep going the way they've been going the past year, I'm positive Obama will be one and done. It's not because I cower in fear of our new Teapublican overlords after their history making, freedom loving, glory inducing, red, white and blue tour de force of Americana that pulled us from the brink of the abyss of patriotic damnation. It's not because the will of the people spoke, nay, wielded the sword of unyeilding and uncompromising truth, honesty, and justice to slay the foes of peace, democracy, and freedom. No, I'm worried about the Democrats uncanny ability to, as the saying goes, pull defeat from the jaws of victory.|
The Democrats just got slapped around. Big time. No doubt about that. That's something we should be somewhat concerned about. But it's not something we need to be very concerned about, provided the Democrats in power and those running the show get their sh*t together and start taking advantage of wonderful opportunity the Teapublicans just handed to us. Make that three opportunities...
1. Mandate? The Teapublicans are certain of the mandate they were just given. Unfortunately for them it really wasn't an all powerful mandate, but that won't diminish the bravado or self righteous power trip they're high on. Polls are divided about whether this was even a referendum on Obama's policies - much less a rebuke of his efforts, Teabaggers were elected in a number of races but were also crushed (as loons) in other high profile races meaning they don't have the across-the-board appeal they think they do, the American people have been giving Congress ridiculously low approval ratings so some change had to come, the economy still isn't good (better than it would have been, but many are still hurting) so some change had to come, Obama's huge victory two years ago put some Democrats in power that normally wouldn't have been in those districts so it's natural that those seats would be in great danger, the Democrats in general have done a HORRIBLE job messaging and marketing (see Lowell's post on the issue), the minority base is usually more motivated and was so in this case with rank-and-file Republicans showing higher enthusiasm, and so on. Point being, any rational analysis of the Teapublican victory would have to conclude that the reasons for their various victories are many, many of those reasons have nothing to do with their platform, and there is certainly no mandate.
|Eric :: Obama - One and Done?|
|They are going to act like they've just been elected run the entire Country, instead of the more modest gaining control of the House. Which means they will be trying to shove their agenda down everyone's throat. And thanks to the influx of the Teabaggers, that agenda is even more extreme than ever before. In short, the Teapublicans are going to do their thing without hesitation or reservation, so the Democrats can make huge strides by simply making sure the American people see that agenda for what it really is. In fact, it's so simple that I'm sure the Democrats will find a way to f*ck it up (again, I refer to Lowell's post about messaging and marketing). Seriously, this shouldn't be difficult given the personalities (with chips on their shoulders) who are coming to Washington.2. Infighting. It's going to be a bare fisted slugfest to see who can take the mantle of most extreme in the Teapublican party. While the old Republican party was VERY good at controlling their people, it's not looking quite so good this time around. Not only can the Teabaggers sense that they are not far from toppling the old leadership, but they are also sure enough of themselves that they'd go it on their own if their agenda isn't strictly adhered to. Neither branch of the Teapublican party is willing to compromise with the Democrats (see above for how that's an advantage), but they're already showing signs of not wanting to compromise ANY of their individual beliefs, which will certainly place members of the party at odds with each other. They're even talking about it in sound bites, with the vague (and sometimes not so vague) "my way or the highway" rhetoric. |
Because the Teapublicans are so dead set on their principles, there will be plenty of opportunities to drive the wedge in deeper. And the deeper it goes, the uglier the infighting will be. They'll be on the look out for this scenario so it won't be easy to take advantage of, but there will certainly be opportunities. Can the Democrats make the most of those opportunities? If the recent past is any indicator, the answer is no - the Democrats will probably step in and try to forge a compromise for the two sides and in process make themselves look like idiots.
3. Incompetence. Some come from the Palin school of mis-education while others will be blinded by ideology. Either way the end result will be very bad governance. Since we're still in a time of economic crisis, and we've still got corporations screwing up the environment, our savings, our housing, and our credit, and we're still fighting wars on terror and drugs, and we've still got immigration issues, and on and on, it should be easy to spot bad leadership. In fact, compared to Obama's (usually) good leadership these guys should look like absolute morons.
But this all gets back to messaging and marketing (yes, see Lowell's post again). If Faux News can convince their loyal followers that bad leadership is actually good, and then those followers make such noise that the MSM actually starts believing it (or is too scared to confront Faux and the Right), then their bad leadership will be rewarded again in two years. So again, the Teapublicans incompetence will be a golden opportunity for the Democrats, but only if they figure out how to take advantage of it. And again, history shows that the Democrats will find a way to let them off the hook.
Seriously, I'm thinking if the cards are played well, the pendulum will swing back just as far to the left in two years. But they need to be played well, not dropped on the floor - face up. So given the recent track record of the Democratic party (see yesterday's election results if you need a refresher) I'm going to have to lean heavily toward Obama being a one-and-done President. Please don't misunderstand - I really do hope I'm wrong. And I will be if the Dems can take advantage of the bounty of political opportunities the Teapublicans will provide. But they've got to nail the opportunities they've been missing so often.
Posted by Lowell at 8:36 PM
This graph shows the dropoff from 2008 votes, by congressional district, for John McCain and Barack Obama and the 2010 votes for Republican and Democratic congressional candidates, respectively. For instance, John McCain received 164,874 votes in the 5th CD in 2008 and Robert Hurt received 119,243
votes in 2010, which means there was a 28% dropoff. For comparison, also in the 5th CD, Barack Obama received 157,362 votes in 2008, while Tom Perriello received 110,568 votes in 2010, for a 30% dropoff. Now, let's rank the candidates from lowest to highest dropoff, as a way to measure how effectively they got out their votes yesterday compared to the vote for president in 2008. Also, keep in mind that Republicans were more energized this year than in 2008, but obviously that's not the only factor at work here, given Rick Boucher's and Tom Perriello's excellent GOTV numbers.1. Rick Boucher: -20%
2. Frank Wolf: -27%
3. Robert Hurt: -28%
4. Randy Forbes: -29%
4. Keith Fimian: -29%
6. Tom Perriello: -30%
6. Rob Wittman: -30%
8. Bob Goodlatte: -31%
9. Eric Cantor: -33%
10. Scott Rigell: -36%
11. Chuck Smith: -38%
12. Morgan Griffith: -40%
13. Gerry Connolly: -47%
14. Bobby Scott: -50%
14. Jim Moran: -50%
16. Glenn Nye: -51%
17. Rick Waugh: -55%
18. Wynne LeGrow: -59%
18. Krystal Ball: -59%
20. Jeff Barnett: -65%
Posted by Lowell at 9:37 AM
|VIRGINIA -- 8 Republicans (+3), 3 Democrats (-3)|
Delegation: 8 Republicans, 3 DemocratsDistrict 1: Rep. Rob Wittman 135,431-Krystal Ball 73,668
District 2: Rep. Scott Rigell 88,007-Glenn Nye 70,306 PICKUP
District 3: Rep. Bobby Scott 114,656-Chuck Smith 44,488
District 4: Rep. Randy Forbes 122,661-Wynne LeGrow 74,205
District 5: Robert Hurt 119,241-Tom Perriello 110,561 PICKUP
District 6: Rep. Bob Goodlatte 125,298-Jeffrey Vanke 21,412
District 7: Rep. Eric Cantor 138,093-Rick Waugh 79,289-Floyd Bayne 15,154
District 8: Rep. Jim Moran 116,264-Patrick Murray 71,097
District 9: Morgan Griffith 95,526-Rep. Rick Boucher 86,616 PICKUP
District 10: Rep. Frank Wolf 136,703-Jeff Barnett 72,272
District 11: Rep. Gerry Connolly 110,401-Keith Fimian 109,914 (with 98.80% of votes counted)
As of 6:20 am, according to Politico, it appears that Democrats will keep control of the Senate (with 51-54 seats) but lose the House (down around 60 seats), which means Democrats retain the Senate but Republicans (new speaker: John Boehner) take the House. A few key Senate results include:
*Sen. Harry Reid defeats Sharron Angle in Nevada, 50.2%-44.6%.
*Joe Manchin defeats John Raese in West Virginia, 53.5%-43.4%.
*Pat Toomey defeats Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania, 51.0%-49.0%.
*Mark Kirk defeats Alexi Giannoulias in Illinois, 48.4%-46.1%.
*Ron Johnson defeats Sen. Russ Feingold in Wisconsin, 51.9%-47.1%.
*Rand Paul defeats Jack Conway in Kentucky 55.9%-44.1%
*Chris Coons defeats Christine O'Donnell in Delaware, 56.6%-40.0%
*Marco Rubio wins easily in Florida over Charlie Crist and Kendrick Meek
*Richard Blumenthal wins easily in Connecticut over Linda McMahon
Washington State, Colorado and Alaska remain too close to call.
In governor's races, it appears that Republicans are picking up around 8 seats (including Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and New Mexico) but that Democrats have taken California. Right now, it appears that Alex Sink has lost to Rick Scott in Florida.
A quick analysis by Nate Silver on Rasmussen, which turns out to be as biased (towards Republicans) as many of us suspected all along.
While waiting for the remaining results to trickle in from states like Colorado and Alaska, I did a quick check on the accuracy of polls from the firm Rasmussen Reports, which came under heavy criticism this year - including from FiveThirtyEight - because its polls showed a strong lean toward Republican candidates.Indeed, Rasmussen polls quite consistently turned out to overstate the standing of Republicans tonight. Of the roughly 100 polls released by Rasmussen or its subsidiary Pulse Opinion Research in the final 21 days of the campaign, roughly 70 to 75 percent overestimated the performance of Republican candidates, and on average they were biased against Democrats by 3 to 4 points.Let's put it this way, Rasmussen is the preferred pollster of the insane right wingnut Washington Examiner. 'Nuff said.UPDATE: I agree with Markos on this one, "Teabaggers rescued Dems from themselves in CO, NV, and DE. Without them, we'd have a 50/50 Senate." Alao, in Alaska, it looks like they've lost to Lisa Murkowski, and they almost helped defeat Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania (with Christine "Not a Witch" O'Donnell's insanity in neighboring Delaware). In addition, they handed the Colorado governor's mansion to Democrats on a silver platter, not to mention New York's. Oh, and thanks for saving Harry Reid in Nevada, guys! :)
UPDATE #2: See Ari Melber on "Lessons of the Blue Dog Blowout". "Loudly breaking with Obama on health care was not a winner, either. "Of the 34 Democrats who voted against the health care bill in March - 24 of them were Blue Dogs - only 12 won reelection," notes reporter Jon Ward." Hello, Glenn Nye and Rick Boucher, did you hear that?
UPDATE 11:30 am: The Denver Post calls it for Michael Bennet. Great news; Ken Buck was apparently just too crazy for Colorado voters.
UPDATE 11:41 am: With 100% of precincts now reporting, Rep. Gerry Connolly leads Keith Fimian by 820 votes (111,515-110,695). What would have happened if Republicans had nominated Pat Herrity instead of Fimian? My guess is that Connolly would have lost last night. But they didn't, and he didn't.
Posted by Lowell at 8:31 AM
|Here are a few winners and losers from last night that I think are worth highlighting.Winners|
1. Ignorance. With the victory of numerous Republican climate deniers and "skeptics," not to mention people (e.g., Robert Hurt, Scott Rigell, Morgan Griffith) who are utterly clueless on a wide range of other issues, it's clear that last night, ignorance was a big winner. Congratulations, ignorance, you rock! (one important caveat: in California, ignorance suffered a major setback, as Proposition 23 - to roll back California's landmark clean energy and climate law - was defeated!)
2. Fear/Anxiety. Last night, our fears and anxieties won out over our better judgment. I understand that people are scared and worried right now - and rightfully so! - but how does voting to make things worse across the board help matters in any way?
3. Rewarding irresponsibility. After 8 years of disastrous Republican misrule, after 2 years of irresponsibly saying "no" to everything (while pandering to the most extreme, angry, intolerant voices in their party), and after offering no new ideas or serious plans on any of the issues anyone cares about, the American voters in their infinite wisdom yesterday rewarded said "Party of No" for its irresponsibility. What happens when you reward a child for bad behavior and "acting up?" You don't have to be a child psychologist to know that they'll just learn they should do that again. And again. And again. Brilliant.
4. Voting against one's own self interest. Last night, the American people threw a temper tantrum because the economy's bad and - as Homer Simpson once said, they're "mad NOW!!!" - and decided to cut their noses to spite their faces. Of course, in doing so, they ended up harming their own self interest, not to mention the national interest. Other than that, great night everybody! (snark)
5. Our corporate overlords. For all the talk of the "grassroots" Tea Party, the fact is that the big winners last night were the big corporations and their big money. Basically, we got the best Congress that Exxon Mobil, the Koch brothers, and other corporate interests who do not have your best interests at heart, could buy. Thank you, Citizens United, and thank you to our corporate overlords, all hail!
6. Harry Reid. How many lives does this guy have? And how lucky can you get with a lunatic opponent like Sharron Angle?!?
7. Empty suits. Eric Can'tor led the way on this one, but there are so many others, including right here in Virginia with Robert Hurt and Scott Rigell.
8. Staying on message/creating a narrative - Republican edition. Republicans may not have any serious ideas, let alone any good ideas. They may pander to fear, anxiety, ignorance, and bigotry. They may be even less popular than Democrats. But they sure know how to stay on their simplistic, angry message and to create a powerful narrative (albeit false, crazy, etc.). Last night, it worked.
9. Faux News, Rasmussen, Rush, Glenn Beck, the Koch brothers, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, and everyone else who relentlessly bashed the Democrats the last two years, even if it was with absolute lunacy like "death panels" and "Obama's a socialist Muslim." Last night, it worked.
10. Denial. One thing's for sure about last night; the American people - or either party, for that matter - did not squarely face up to the challenges facing us as a nation, whether it's the national debt, the need for energy independence, the problem of climate change, our crumbling infrastructure, or a million other problems. Last night, instead, head-in-the-sand denial won. We'll see how that works out for America, as China and other countries race ahead. Sadly, it's quite possible historians will look back in 50 years and point to 2010 as the election that marked the inexorable decline of America as a great power. I hope not, but I fear it could be the case.
11. John BONEr, Eric Can'tor, the Republican Party of Virginia, the NRCC, etc. They may have run a lying, cynical, vicious, vapid campaign, but in politics, if you win you're a genius. So today, I guess they're geniuses.
"Mixed" and "Losers" on the "flip"
Posted by Lowell at 8:30 AM
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
|Polls are closing across the country, I'll use this as a national results thread. So far, it's not looking great in Indiana and Kentucky, where polls closed at 6 pm. Also, the exit polls aren't particularly encouraging. But we'll see...this could be a long night, in more ways than one.By the way, I'm following the results on Twitter, the Washington Post, Politico and 538, among other places.|
UPDATE 7:05 pm: The AP has called Indiana for Dan Coats and Kentucky for Rand Paul. Aqua Buddha!!!
UPDATE 7:09 pm: Possibly encouraging news? "Ben Chandler, a Democrat, leads by about 10 points so far with 4 percent of the vote counted in Kentucky's 6th Congressional district."
UPDATE 7:43 pm: Republicans winning or leading Senate races in Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Dakota and New Hampshire. But hey, Vermont's looking good for the Democrats! (gallows humor) Also, Nate Silver says, " our model has revised its projection to a G.O.P. gain of 55-56 seats rather than 54-55. Not a huge deal, obviously, but it likes what it's seeing from Republicans so far in Indiana, even as most of the other House races so far are playing about to expectations."
UPDATE 7:47 pm: Marc Ambinder tweets, "CBS News projects that Chris Coons will handily defeat Christine O'D in DE SEN." But at least she's not a witch! LOL Also, "Marcy Kaptur (D) beats Rich Iott in OH 08. he wore the nazi uniform; she gets to keep the job." Iott lost even after BONE-r appeared with him this weekend? Is there no justice in the world?!? Heh.
UPDATE 7:57 pm: According to Nate Silver, "here's a sign that tonight might not be an apocalypse for Democrats: the Kentucky Third District, where John Yarmuth, a Democrat, had been favored but the polling had been erratic, has been called for him. The other vulnerable Democrat in Kentucky, Ben Chandler, is also leading so far in Kentucky's Sixth District."
UPDATE 8:01 pm: Marco Rubio has won in Florida. ABC News projects Kelly Ayotte the winner in New Hampshire.
UPDATE 8:07 pm: As expected, Richard Blumenthal is projected to defeat Linda McMahon for Senate.
UPDATE 8:14 pm: Good news in Delaware, where John Carney picks up the formerly Republican seat vacated by Mike Castle. Also, Ben Chandler in Kentucky is leading with 73% of votes counted.
UPDATE 8:37 pm: In West Virginia, Joe Manchin holds the Senate seat for Democrats. Also, in Arkansas, "Plantation Blanche" Lincoln - possibly the worst "Democrat" in the Senate - is gone. Honestly, I've gotta say, "good riddance." She was horrible.
UPDATE 8:44 pm: Liberal-but-lunatic Alan Grayson has lost, do I see a talk show in his future?
UPDATE 8:53 pm: Rep. Baron Hill loses in IN-09.
UPDATE 9:00 pm: MSNBC projects "that GOP will win control of the House.... It will be 236-199, plus/minus 13 seats."
UPDATE 9:03 pm: Democrats sweep New York - governor and both Senate seats. CNN has called PA-Gov for Corbett.
UPDATE 9:18 pm: Congratulations to Martin O'Malley, reelected as governor of Maryland. Sadly, Rep. Carol Shea-Porter lost in NH to a total right wingnut,Frank Guinta. Ugh.
UPDATE 9:22 pm: According to Nate Silver, "Our model has revised upward its expectation for Republican House gains to 57 seats -- but so far, they aren't winning too many of the types of races they would need in order to post something extraordinary like a 75-seat gain."
UPDATE 9:49 pm: It appears that Betty Sutton has held on in Ohio-13. Blue Dog Alan Boyd loses in FL-O2. In PA, Joe Sestak is leading 53%-47% with nearly half of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 10:10 pm: Deval Patrick holds on as governor of Massachusetts. With 31% reporting, Sen. Michael Bennet is leading Ken Buck. In IL, with 55% of votes counted, Alexi Giannoulias is leading 49%-46%. In PA, with 61% reporting, Joe Sestak is leading 52%-48%. Also, it looks like Hickenlooper is winning the governor's race in Colorado easily over two wingnuts - Tom Tancredo and Dan Maes.
UPDATE 10:32 pm: Bad news in Ohio, with incumbents Charlie Wilson, John Boccieri and Zack Space trailing. Pennsylvania doesn't look good either for the House of Representatives, with several Democratic incumbents apparently losing.
UPDATE 10:41 pm: It looks like Russ Feingold has lost in Wisconsin to Ron Johnson. Blech.
UPDATE 10:56 pm: The situation is deteriorating in the PA, CO and IL Senate races. Maybe I should just go to bed at this point, before things get any worse.
UPDATE 11:56 pm: Pat Toomey has been declared the winner in PA's Senate race. Barbara Boxer won in CA. Patty Murray is leading in WA. Mark Kirk is apparently winning the IL Senate race. Michael Bennet has a slim lead in CO with 32% reporting. Harry Reid has a 51.6%-44.1% lead in NV with 12.9% reporting. It looks like Dem's will hold the Senate, lose the House. It could have been worse, but still, a very bad night for our country.
Posted by Lowell at 8:33 PM
|The polls are now closed in Virginia. I'll use this thread to follow the results. As of 7 pm, from everything I'm hearing and reading, I can't say it's looking great. Could Gerry Connolly lose? Rick Boucher? Glenn Nye and Tom Perriello? All possible. Stay tuned, and check out results at the State Board of Elections website.UPDATE 7:11 pm: With 3% of votes counted, Morgan Griffith leads Rep. Rick Boucher 59%-39% in the 9th CD. Robert Hurt is slightly ahead of Rep. Tom Perriello with 2.3% reporting in the 5th CD.|
UPDATE 7:24 pm: Just to get it out of the way, the following Virginia Republicans will win tonight: Eric Cantor, Bob Goodlatte, Frank Wolf, Rob Wittman, and Randy Forbes.
UPDATE 7:30 pm: With 17.8% of precincts reporting in the 5th CD, it's Robert Hurt 56.4%-Tom Perriello 41.3%. Nothing from Albemarle or C-ville, though.
UPDATE 7:38 pm: With 4.3% of precincts in, it's Scott Rigell leading Rep. Glenn Nye 51%-46% in the 2nd CD. In the 5th CD, with 27% of precincts in, it's Hurt leading Perriello 55%-42%. C-ville's starting to come in. With 28% of precincts in, it's Morgan Griffith leading Rick Boucher 55%-43% in the 9th CD. Not looking good, Boucher could be in serious trouble.
UPDATE 7:50 pm: Good news per Jon Bowerbank - "Congrats to Joseph Puckett - winner, winner, chicken dinner ~1100-~800! Rick up in Russell County w/ 11/15 precincts reporting." Go Joseph!
UPDATE 7:51 pm: Oh, and it goes without saying that Rep. Bobby Scott will win reelection easily tonight.
UPDATE 7:53 pm: With 7% of precincts reporting, Jim Moran is winning easily in the 8th CD over Patrick Murray. With 4.8% of precincts reporting in the 11th, Keith Fimian is leading Rep. Gerry Connolly 55%-42%. Also, NLS has called the 9th for Morgan Griffith. Oh, wonderful.
UPDATE 8:00 pm: NLS tweets, "Gerry just won the most Democratic precinct in Fairfax City by 50 votes- horrible sign for him."
UPDATE 8:04 pm: In the 7th CD, Eric Cantor under 60% against unknown, unfunded Rick Waugh and Tea Partier Floyd Bayne. Not impressive. In contrast,Frank Wolf is romping over Jeff Barnett, 68%-29%.
UPDATE 8:09 pm: With 20% of precincts reporting in the 2nd CD, Scott Rigell is leading Glenn Nye 48.6%-47.9%. With 61% of precincts reporting in the 5th CD, Robert Hurt is leading Tom Perriello 53%-45%. Also, John Yarmuth has held on in Kentucky's 3rd CD.
UPDATE 8:20 pm: Isaac Wood tweets, "Bad news for Perriello in #VA05? Down 8%. 56% reporting. Good news? Albemarle & Charlottesville (his base) still to come."
UPDATE 8:22 pm: It's not looking good for Glenn Nye in the 2nd CD, where Scott Rigell is leading 52%-44% with 36% of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 8:25 pm: CBS has called the 5th CD for Robert Hurt over Tom Perriello. How depressing. (with 79% of precincts reporting, Hurt leads 52%-45%.)
UPDATE 8:28 pm: In the 2nd CD, with 43% of precincts reporting, Scott Rigell is leading Glenn Nye 54%-43%. So far, it doesn't look like Nye's strategy of having no principles or courage, not to mention being the least progressive Democrat in Congress, is paying off for him. What a shocker - despite his pathetic pandering, Republicans still attacked him as a "liberal" who voted with "Pelosi, Reid and Obama."
UPDATE 8:36 pm: With 30% of precincts reporting in the 11th CD, Gerry Connolly is trailing Keith Fimian by just 370 votes.
UPDATE 8:39 pm: AP calls VA-09 for Morgan Griffith over Rep. Rick Boucher. The irony of this one is that Boucher worked hard to water down the energy/climate bill and to lard it up with the coal industry wish list, yet he still got blamed for voting for "cap and tax." In a perverse way, maybe there's justice after all?
UPDATE 9:04 pm: The AP has called Scott Rigell over Glenn Nye in the 2nd CD. In the end, Kenny Golden was a complete non-factor, in spite of his support from the Modern Whig Party. Seriously, the "Modern Whig Party."
UPDATE 9:24 pm: Still extremely close in the 11th CD, where Keith Fimian leads Gerry Connolly by under 900 votes with 69% of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 9:27 pm: In Arlington, Chris Zimmerman is winning reelection easily for County Board. Sally Baird is winning reelection to the School Board easily. Congratulations to both!
UPDATE 9:29 pm: In the end, it wasn't even close in the 2nd CD, where Glenn Nye is trailing by 11 points with 75% of precincts reporting. It turns out that the 5th CD, where Tom Perriello acted like a - gasp! - Democrat, is much closer than the 2nd CD, where Glenn Nye might as well have been a Republican. More on this tomorrow...
UPDATE 9:36 pm: Sen. Mark Warner says, "I can't think of anyone who has worked as hard or been a more passionate advocate for his constituents than Tom Perriello. He has worked to make higher education more affordable and accessible, and he has been a fierce advocate for jobs, clean energy and economic renewal. I am certain we have not heard the last from this talented young man." Also, "Rick Boucher has been a fierce protector of his southwest Virginia constituents for nearly 30 years of public service. There is not a single community in the Ninth Congressional District that has not been touched in some significant way through Congressman Boucher's work, and it really is unfortunate that Rick was swept-up in a national wave of discontent and voter frustration."
UPDATE 9:47 pm: With 83.3% of precincts reporting, Gerry Connolly has pulled ahead of Keith Fimian, 49.09%-48.83%.
UPDATE 10:00 pm: With 98.7% counted in VA-05, real Democrat Tom Perriello is losing, but only by 4 points. In VA-02, quasi-"Democrat" Glenn Nye is losing by 10 points. Meanwhile, real Democrat Gerry Connolly is leading by about 500 votes with 95% of precincts reporting.
UPDATE 10:26 pm: With 97.02% counted in VA-11, Gerry Connolly is leading Keith Fimian by just under 700 votes. NLS has called it for Connolly, and there's nobody more knowledgeable about the 11th CD than Ben Tribbett, so I put a lot of stock in that. We'll see...
UPDATE 11:44 pm: Connolly's barely leading with almost all votes counted, but this one's probably headed for a recount.
UPDATE 11:46 pm: Guess who got the highest and lowest # of votes tonight among Virginia Democrats? From most to fewest: Jim Moran 116,264; Bobby Scott 114,416; Tom Perriello 110,561; Gerry Connolly 110,401; Rick Boucher 86,616; Rick Waugh 79,289; Wynne LeGrow 74,205; Krystal Ball 73,668; Jeff Barnett 72,272; and...Glenn Nye 68,531! That's right, the bluest of "Blue Dogs" got the fewest votes, while the most progressive Democrats - generally got the highest. So, in the end, Glenn Nye stood for nothing, had no soul, and also got the fewest votes, even running behind people with no name ID and no money - but with real Democratic convictions - like Rick Waugh and Wynne LeGrow and Jeff Barnett. Is there a lesson here? Hmmmmm.
UPDATE 11:54 pm: Mark Warner says, "Gerry Connolly has had a remarkable record of public service at the local level and now as a member of Congress, and I congratulate him on his hard-fought victory tonight. Northern Virginia will continue to have a strong advocate and a
Posted by Lowell at 8:32 PM
|Whatever the results of the mid-term election today, and most likely they won't be great for the Democrats, I believe it's high time to shake things up at the White House, the DNC, and pretty much everywhere in the Democratic Party. Why do I say this? Let us count the ways. (warning: major rant ahead)1. Total Messaging FAIL|
Democrats over the past 2 years haven't been able to craft a compelling narrative to save their lives, and that's utterly inexcusable. For instance, did you know that the much-reviled Stimulus Act not only helped save us from Great Depression II, it also cut taxes by $288 billion, giving just about every American a tax break? It's true, yet most voters think the opposite ("By 52 percent to 19 percent, likely voters say federal income taxes have gone up for the middle class in the past two years.")! I'm sorry, but that's inexcusable. Anyone involved in this failure to communicate should be fired immediately. They are utterly incompetent and should never work in politics again. Period.
Continuing on this same theme, the same poll shows that voters believe - incorrectly, once again - that most TARP money has been "lost." In fact, the Treasury "expects to turn a $16 billion profit" on TARP. But again, nobody knows that. WTF?!?
Yet another example: most Americans don't remember when this recession started (under Bush), don't know what caused it (lots of factors, including Republican policies that led to the housing bubble and collapse, rapidly growing income inequality, deregulatory policies that let Wall Street run amok, etc.), and aren't aware that the economy's growing again under the Democrats. They also don't give Democrats any credit for avoiding Great Depression II. It's maddening, and it's partly the result of the lamestream media and the Republican Big Lie, but we've also got to point our fingers at Major Democratic Messaging FAIL!
|lowkell :: Democrats Need to Shake Things Up After This Election's Over|
|2. Total Marketing FAIL|
Yet another example would be Democrats' utter failure to sell health care reform or to defend themselves on clean energy/climate legislation. As always, the Republican demonization strategy was effective, and the Democrats couldn't defend themselves if their lives depended on it. For instance, on health care reform, we waited months to really respond to Republican lunacy on "death panels," "government takeover of health care," and other Big Lies. I guess the theory that this s*** was so crazy, we didn't even have to respond. Well, guess what guys - YOU DO!!! By the time Democrats did respond, ineffectually and half-heartedly of course, it was waaaaayyy too late. Heckuva job. Oh, and if all that's not bad enough, Democrats couldn't even effectively push back when Republicans demonized one of their own core ideas - the "individual mandate" - as suddenly evil incarnate. That's right, let me repeat: the individual mandate was a Republican idea, as was much of the health care reform bill, yet Democrats allowed Republicans to a) redefine the bill as a core Democratic one; b) demonize it as socialist, etc.; and c) win the debate. Pathetic.It was the same thing on clean energy and climate legislation, which Republicans managed to demonize as "cap and tax." This, despite the fact that "cap and trade" was actually a conservative, "free market" Republican idea, coming out of the Reagan Administration no less. Yet Democrats were helpless, apparently, to defend themselves, even as Republicans once again demonized their own idea! Again, it's maddening, and all of these Democratic messaging "gurus" should be on the streets looking for work tomorrow.
3. Major overpromising and political strategery FAIL
Then, there are the idiots who thought it made sense to promise the moon and stars to Democrats but then deliver only a lump of coal in our stocking. Thus, in 2006 and 2008, we were told over and over again: just get us back Congress and the White House, especially if you can get us a "filibuster-proof majority" in the Senate, and we'll deliver everything you want, from "card check" to immigration reform to comprehensive energy and climate legislation to real health care reform (with a public option, at least) to closing Gitmo to ending "Don't Ask Don't Tell" to...well, you get the message. In the end, the grassroots delivered the White House, the Congress, the 60-vote "filibuster-proof majority," everything we were asked to do.
And what did we get out of our efforts? Go down that list and decide for yourself. And yes, I am well aware that Republicans, aka "the party of no," were largely at fault. But c'mon now, let's get serious; when Republicans barely controlled Congress in 2001-2006, they rammed a LOT of Bush's agenda through. Democrats, in contrast, spent endless months waiting for "bipartisan" support for health care reform and other priorities, only to receive the cold shoulder time and time again. Overpromise, underdeliver -- a recipe for failure and pissed-off Democrats. This should be glaringly obvious, yet apparently it wasn't. Did the geniuses ever learn their lesson? Nope. Should any of these people still have jobs tomorrow? Nope.
4. Major Democratic Cojones/Disloyalty FAIL
Finally, I've got to say, too many supposed "Democrats" ran campaigns that only can be described as pathetic, pusillanimous, and principle-less. For instance, we had one Democratic campaign in Virginia bashing health care reform in its TV ads, posing a false equivalence of blame between Republicans and Democrats, distancing themselves from Nancy Pelosi, and generally failing to stand up for Democratic core values and accomplishments. With Democrats like this, who needs enemies, yet across the country, we saw way too much of this disloyalty and Democratic "brand" damaging. It's inexcusable, and my bet is that most of these jerks will lose anyway. Good riddance.
In sum: Yes, I'm frustrated. Yes, I'm aggravated. Yes, I'm disgusted. And yes, I could go on and on all day about all this. For now, though, I'll spare you. However, something tells me I'll have a lot more to say about this in coming days...
Posted by Lowell at 9:33 AM