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Midterm elections - history lesson - reality check
Tarnsman

Posted on 11/14/2006 3:09:32 AM PST by Tarnsman

Time for a history lesson. The media, the Democrats and some Freebers want you to believe that somehow this election was different. No, the losses the GOP suffered WERE to be expected. Let us review, shall we?

President            Mid-term    Senate    House

Grant (R)            1870    -4    -31

Grant (R)            1874    -8     -96

Hayes (R)            1878     -6      -9

Arthur (R)            1882     +3     -33

Cleveland (D)            1886    +3    -12

Harrison (R)            1890    0    -85

Cleveland (D)            1894    -5    -116

McKinley (R)            1898    +7    -21

TR (R)            1902    +2    +9

TR (R)            1906     +3    -28

Taft (R)            1910    -10    -57

Wilson (D)            1914    +5    -59

Wilson (D)            1918    -6    -19

Harding (R)            1922    -8    -75

Coolidge (R)            1926    -6    -10

Hoover (R)            1930    -8    -49

FDR (D)            1934    +10    +9

FDR (D)            1938    -6    -71

FDR (D)            1942    -9    -45

Truman (D)            1946     -12     -55

Truman (D)            1950    -6    -59

Ike (R)            1954    -1    -18

Ike (R)            1958    -13    -48

JFK (D)            1962    +3    -4

LBJ (D)            1966    -4    -47

Nixon (R)            1970    +2    -12

Nixon (R)            1974    -5    -48

Carter (D)            1978    -3    -15

Reagan (R)            1982    +1    -26

Reagan (R)            1986    -8    -5

Bush '41 (R)            1990    -1    -8

Clinton (D)            1994    -9    -54

Clinton (D)            1998    0    +4

Bush '43 (R)            2002    +2    0

Bush '43 (R)            2006    -6    -28



(1) With only four exceptions, EVERY single President since Lincoln has lost seats in the House in the midterm elections. The only ones to buck the trend were the Roosevelts (TR because he was the mostly popular President EVER his first term, FDR because of the Depression), Clinton (because of Republican miscues during the Impeachment) and Bush '43 (because of 9/11). GW was bound to lose this one.

(2) Midterm years in bold are the dreaded "six year itch". I have marked 1966 as one in that LBJ was finishing out what would have been JFK's second term. GW is his sixth year. Losses in the midterm were almost certain.

(3) Wilson (1918), FDR (1942), Truman (1950) and LBJ (1966) all lost seats both in the House and Senate when the country was at war. McKinley (1898) gained Senate seats, but lost seats in the House. Guess the country had mixed feelings about thumping Spain. Bush '41 can also be considered in this group as the country was gearing up for Gulf War I. Another category that GW fits into

(4) In terms of serious setbacks in the midterms this one doesn’t even come close. 1894 ranks as the all-time thumping with an astounding 116 House seats and 5 Senate seats changing hands. 1994, 1974, 1966, 1958 (I thought everyone liked Ike), 1938 (so much for the New Deal being popular), 1946, 1930 or 1874 were much, much worse. So counting our blessings is in order.

(5) Voters don't like scandals and take it out on the party in power. Midterm years underlined are considered scandal midterms. 1994 is in the list due to the number of scandals in Congress plus the Clintons were hip deep in scandals as well. Foley, et al doomed the Republicans at the start.

(6) Voters don't like excess spending. The thumping the Republicans received in 1890 was a voter rebellion against the "Billion Dollar Congress". The same can be said about FDR's spanking in 1938 (New Deal overreach) and Clinton's in 1994 (attempted takeover of the health care system). With bridges to nowhere is it any wonder the GOP lost seats?

(7)The historical average is a loss of 3 Senate seats and 34 House seats for the President's party in the midterms. For the "six year curse" the averge is 6 Senate seats and 39 House seats. The 2006 losses fit the historical norms.

Given the political history of our nation and add in the fact that most of the races were decided by very thin margins all the hand wringing is unjustified. Time to dust off the jeans and get back into the fight. This little history lesson should remind you that in our Republic the political fortunes of the parties ebb and flow. So the next time a liberal gloats in your face, remind him or her that this wasn't 1994, 1946 or 1938 and it sure as heck wasn't 1894.


TOPICS: Politics/Elections; Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: election
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1 posted on 11/14/2006 3:09:33 AM PST by Tarnsman
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To: Tarnsman

Good post - not the awful Vanities that have been plaguing FR for a week. Thanks.


2 posted on 11/14/2006 3:12:23 AM PST by SkyPilot
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To: Tarnsman
So W did better then Clinton...

Clinton -9 /-50
W.Bush -4 / -28

3 posted on 11/14/2006 3:16:14 AM PST by Echo Talon
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To: Tarnsman

Reagan -7 / -31


4 posted on 11/14/2006 3:17:26 AM PST by Echo Talon
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To: Tarnsman
Thank you for your post.

It is always important to keep things in context.

Most of the elections we lost were close ones.

A combination of factors led to the GOP defeat.

There is too much pessimism on these threads as if we were crushed.

5 posted on 11/14/2006 3:17:29 AM PST by fortheDeclaration (Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal.4:16))
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To: Tarnsman

Thank you for posting this.


6 posted on 11/14/2006 3:17:34 AM PST by Right_in_Virginia
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To: Tarnsman

Stats. I'm supposed to feel good about that? The facts are that dems have the congress and are likely to make legislation in opposition to conservative principles: smaller government, less costly government, less intrusive government - and likely with help from our president. I'm not taking heart in that. This is a wake-up call to the republican party and if it doesn't respond in keeping to conservative principles, it's a wake-up call to conservatives to find another means.


7 posted on 11/14/2006 3:20:52 AM PST by gotribe (There's still time to begin a war in Iraq.)
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To: Tarnsman

Perspective yes, but that doesn't mean we should not
route out rinos and moderates.


8 posted on 11/14/2006 3:22:36 AM PST by sirchtruth (No one has the RIGHT not to be offended...)
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To: gotribe

"The facts are that dems have the congress and are likely to make legislation in opposition to conservative principles: smaller government, less costly government, less intrusive government"

Judging from the last few years, that seems to happen whichever party controls congress?


9 posted on 11/14/2006 3:23:38 AM PST by Canard
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To: Tarnsman

Bump for later.


10 posted on 11/14/2006 3:27:16 AM PST by Alas Babylon!
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To: Tarnsman
Well done and thanks!
11 posted on 11/14/2006 3:30:56 AM PST by Caipirabob (Communists... Socialists... Democrats...Traitors... Who can tell the difference?)
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To: Tarnsman

Thank you so much! I've beeen wondering about this, but didn't know where to look or how to search for it.

Bookmarked!


12 posted on 11/14/2006 3:36:19 AM PST by BlessedBeGod (Benedict XVI = Terminator IV)
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To: gotribe

Not ment to make you feel better. A loss is a loss. I feel your pain too. Can't believe we're going to have to suffer the next two years with a Speaker Pelosi and the rest of the Dem gang. Just threw out the numbers to give everyone a little reality check and remind them, "Tomorrow is another day."


13 posted on 11/14/2006 3:36:57 AM PST by Tarnsman
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To: Tarnsman; AntiGuv; Clintonfatigued; JohnnyZ; AuH2ORepublican; Kuksool; Torie

The ghastly (for the Dems) loss in 1894 was due to a Depression (it was also partly because the Dems were also overrepresented by their usual numbers in the 1892 Congress). It was the single-worst numerical loss for a political party in the House in 1 election since 1789. The GOP, though, lost 48 of those seats in the following 1896 McKinley election (most of those were in usually Dem areas which elected a mess of one-term fluke Republicans).

It's also worth pointing out that many political historians/analysts tend to regard the 1994 elections as a "6th year" election in reverse. 2006 was obviously a return to usual, past historic trends. Presuming we win the Presidency in '08, we shouldn't have another "disaster" again until 2014.


14 posted on 11/14/2006 3:39:32 AM PST by fieldmarshaldj (Cheney X -- Destroying the Liberal Democrat Traitors By Any Means Necessary -- Ya Dig ? Sho 'Nuff.)
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To: Tarnsman
So it was not a 'thumping' ?

The public was not outraged because of GWB's management of the Iraq war ?

You mean we may negotiate with Iran and Syria about Iraq because of a normal historical 6 year itch loss ?

Please.

Someone tell GWB !

15 posted on 11/14/2006 3:43:30 AM PST by justa-hairyape
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To: Tarnsman

Pelosi/Reid, already unpopular going by the polls, are going to be hard-pressed to keep the Congress (the Senate will be harder for us to retake because of whom is up for reelection, but it won't be impossible). Come January, there's gonna be a "WTF ?!?" moment for the American public once they see the REAL change the 'Rats were talking about. To paraphrase Bette Davis, "Fasten your seat belts. It's going to be a bumpy ride !" ;-)


16 posted on 11/14/2006 3:45:16 AM PST by fieldmarshaldj (Cheney X -- Destroying the Liberal Democrat Traitors By Any Means Necessary -- Ya Dig ? Sho 'Nuff.)
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To: Tarnsman

bookmarking for future reference.

Thanks Tarnsman.


17 posted on 11/14/2006 3:52:38 AM PST by Dinah Lord (fighting the Islamofascist Jihad - one keystroke at a time...)
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To: Tarnsman

My question is: how do you get that to format so nicely spaced? I can't post stats for the life of me.


18 posted on 11/14/2006 4:09:37 AM PST by Chi-townChief
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To: Tarnsman
A famous quote comes to mind after seeing this, "I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it. It is my style."

Does anyone know just what it was he squandered all this political capital on? I don't think it was for the next election. Maybe he used it to help pay for all the earmarks our senators attached to the spending bills he never vetoed.

19 posted on 11/14/2006 4:13:08 AM PST by Dixie Yooper (Ephesians 6:11)
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To: Tarnsman

Good research.

FYI- Coolidge 1926 should be in bold since he had become President upon the death of Harding (and elected in 1924).


20 posted on 11/14/2006 4:20:57 AM PST by bobjam
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To: Tarnsman

Nice post and very informative... Regarding us thumping Spain and the people approving: that's back when the media was pulling for America in its foreign conflicts, and believed in our purpose and principles. Not sure we can ever count on that again.


21 posted on 11/14/2006 4:29:09 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: Tarnsman

Oh, yeah: in 1958, Ike faced pretty big recession and a bunch of strikes back when labor was a real factor.


22 posted on 11/14/2006 4:30:17 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: Dixie Yooper

W spent much of his political capital trying to press for Social Security Reform -- but even his GOP caucus in Congress wouldn't take it up seriously. It is only one of the most important issues of our time... one of the many "cans kicked down the road" by Bill Clinton and the Demos. They would prefer to see Social Security fall off the proverbial cliff rather than modify it to make it really work. In large measure, that's what W spent his political capital on. Seems foolish in retrospect, but it was one of the key issues he campained for in 2000 and 2004 and he pursued it. That's what leaders do, I guess.


23 posted on 11/14/2006 4:36:09 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: ReleaseTheHounds
W spent much of his political capital trying to press for Social Security Reform

Social Security Reform was dead before 2003. The quote was made right after the 2004 election.

24 posted on 11/14/2006 4:41:51 AM PST by Dixie Yooper (Ephesians 6:11)
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To: Tarnsman
The President's party usually makes up its losses in the next election. Usually thumpings like this bring in a lot of "low hanging" fruit. There were brought in on the strength of a particular tide and then in the next election, they're washed right out. The most vulnerable Democrats in the House are all in GOP leaning districts. And they'll have to run on the party's liberal record, not on the scandals in the next election.

"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached." -Manuel II Paleologus

25 posted on 11/14/2006 4:45:12 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: Tarnsman

I appreciate the information...thanks for the research!


26 posted on 11/14/2006 4:47:47 AM PST by LachlanMinnesota
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To: Dixie Yooper

Your quote concerns his promotion of Social Security reform.


27 posted on 11/14/2006 4:51:33 AM PST by ClaireSolt (Have you have gotten mixed up in a mish-masher?)
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To: Dixie Yooper

Sorry, Dixie, he tried it twice. In the first term, he had Daniel Patrick Moynihan running the "regional meetings" to discuss Social Security -- all that effort ended after 9/11.

After 2004, he brought Social Security up as a priority for reform and it died. He couldn't get the Dems to discuss it. Pelosi freaked out when that goofy Dem from Florida made a frank proposal saying it would take HUGE tax increases and benefit cuts to cure Social Security. At least he was being honest. After he was spanked, the Dems refused to participate in a discussion and GOP Congressmen followed suit like the cowards they were/are.


28 posted on 11/14/2006 4:59:09 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: ReleaseTheHounds
After 2004, he brought Social Security up as a priority for reform and it died

How can something die that is already dead? From what I recall, it wasn't even a blip on the radar screen, the second time he brought it up. There are so many other things he could have taken on that needed so much more attention, like the alien invasion crisis we now are afraid to face.

29 posted on 11/14/2006 5:21:49 AM PST by Dixie Yooper (Ephesians 6:11)
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To: Dixie Yooper

You're right, but that blip on the radar screen is a $13 trillion unfunded liability awaiting our children and our children's children. But there are other things that are probably more important.... Let's ignore this one.


30 posted on 11/14/2006 6:21:36 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: Tarnsman

True, but you're missing the gerrymandering that has occurred in the last 20 years. For Dems to take some of these seats (Foley, DeLay, Northup, etc.) was no small deal.


31 posted on 11/14/2006 6:23:11 AM PST by LS
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To: fortheDeclaration

I'm not pessimistic, and you are right that something to the tune of 11,000 votes accounted for about four seats, but the fact is many, many of these seats were safe: Foley, Hayworth, DeLay, and in many others, you had a slight GOP advantage that was squandered, esp. considering these were incumbents.


32 posted on 11/14/2006 6:24:46 AM PST by LS
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To: Tarnsman

bttt; where did you get the info for Hayes through Ike? I am surprised to see Ike lost so many in '58.


33 posted on 11/14/2006 6:37:49 AM PST by SoFloFreeper
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To: ReleaseTheHounds
Back in the 1930's there was a Socialist Tyrant by the name of FDR. When he failed to nationalize privately owned industry, he decided to create a doomsday device and called it Social Security. By dressing it up like a gift to everyone, he was able to sell it to congress. If not fed with more and more money from each generation, it will create an economic disaster that will result in a World War like no other that will bring on enough nuclear weapons to end all life on earth. If tampered with, the economic disaster will start even sooner. Eventually there will be no more money to feed it with and the disaster will start regardless of any actions taken.
34 posted on 11/14/2006 6:49:38 AM PST by Dixie Yooper (Ephesians 6:11)
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To: LS

Northrup's seat was always Dem-leaning.

DeLay couldn't get his name off the ballot so his seat required a write-in (and a very complicated name at that, hyphenated something or other). How many write-in campaigns have worked throughout history?

The Foley Scandal came so late that his name couldn't be removed (why can't Florida and Texas be as nimble as New Jersey?????), so voters had to vote for Foley in order to vote for his replacement (Joe Negron).

While "no small deals" for Dems, the cards were well stacked against the GOP in those races.


35 posted on 11/14/2006 7:07:24 AM PST by ReleaseTheHounds
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To: Tarnsman
Let's put this into futher context beginning with FDR [1938]. The Dems may have lost 6 senate seats and 71 House seats, but they retained control of the 76th Congress [1939-41] 69 Dem, 23 Rep and 4 other in the Senate and 262 Dem-169 Rep and 4 Other in the House. The Dems still retained overwhelming control. There was no shift in control. The Dems still controlled both Houses of Congress

In 1950 under Truman, the Dems lost 6 Senate seats and 59 House seats, but the 82nd Congress [1951-53] still remained in Dem hands. The Senate had 48 Dems, 47 Reps, and 1 other. The House also remained in Dem control, 234 Dems, 199 Reps, and 2 other. There was no shift in control of Congress. The Dems still controlled both Houses of Congress.

The 1958 elections saw the Reps lose 13 in the Senate and 48 in the House. The result was that the 86th Congress [1959-61] was comprised of 64 Dems to 34 Reps and the House 283 Dems to 153 Reps. Thus, the Dems increased their margin of control since they also controlled the 85th Congress. There was no shift in control. The Dems still controlled both Houses of Congress.

The 1966 elections saw a Dem loss of 4 in the Senate and 47 in the House. The 90th Congress [1967-69] had in the Senate 64 Dems to 36 Reps and in the House, 248 Dems to 187 Reps. There was no shift in control. The Dems still controlled both Houses of Congress.

In 1974, the Reps lost 5 in the Senate and 48 in the House. The 94th Congress had 61 Dems, 37 Reps, and 2 Other. The House had 291 Dems and 144 Reps. There was no shift in control. The Dems still controlled both Houses of Congress.

In 1986, the Reps lost 8 in the Senate and 5 in the House. The 100th Congress [1987-89] had 55 Dems and 45 Reps. The House had 258 Dems to 177 Reps. The Reps lost control of the Senate and the Dems retained control of the House.

In 1998, the Reps lost 4 in the House. The 106th Congress [1999-2001] had in the Senate 45 Dems to 55 Reps and the House, 211 Dems to 223 Reps. The Reps retain control of Congress.

What we just witnessed in 2006 is historic. The Dems have taken over control of both Houses in a midterm similar to what the Reps pulled off in 1994. It is also sobering to remember that during the 62 year period 1933 to 1995, the Dems held control of the House for 58 years [except for the 80th Congress (1947-49) with 246 Reps, 188 dems, and 1 other and the 83rd Congress (1953-55)with 221 Reps, 213 Dems, and 1 other. During that same 62 year period, the Dems held the Senate for 52 years with the exception of 80th Congress, the 83rd Congress, and the 97th thru 99th Congresses. The slim, 12 year hold on the House by the Reps is a blip historically.

Given the political history of our nation and add in the fact that most of the races were decided by very thin margins all the hand wringing is unjustified. Time to dust off the jeans and get back into the fight. This little history lesson should remind you that in our Republic the political fortunes of the parties ebb and flow. So the next time a liberal gloats in your face, remind him or her that this wasn't 1994, 1946 or 1938 and it sure as heck wasn't 1894.

I agree it is not a time for handwringing, but it is also not a time for rationalization and clutching at straws. We have suffered a major, major defeat. It is not part of an ebb and flow when you look at the ramifications, i.e., a shift in control of Congress, rather than just numbers. Many of the Dem losses during midterms had little or no effect on their control of Congress since they had such overwhelming numbers. For example, in the 89th Congress [1965-67], the Dems controlled the Senate 68-32 and the House 295-140. Is it any wonder that the Dems consider control of Congress their birthright and the norm?

We shouldn't get discouraged but nor should we set unrealistic expectations. 2006 was a political earthquake and not a meter tremor in the political cycle. Fasten your seat belts, it is going to be a bumpy ride.

36 posted on 11/14/2006 7:27:36 AM PST by kabar
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To: LS
I'm not pessimistic, and you are right that something to the tune of 11,000 votes accounted for about four seats, but the fact is many, many of these seats were safe: Foley, Hayworth, DeLay, and in many others, you had a slight GOP advantage that was squandered, esp. considering these were incumbents.

Yes, it was a combination of things that undid the Republicans, corruption charges, bad campaigns, detachment from the voters etc.

We can correct most of these and get back on tract.

While the Democrats cannot run as Democrats, we should be running as Republicans.

37 posted on 11/14/2006 8:21:45 AM PST by fortheDeclaration (Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal.4:16))
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To: kabar
I agree. It's important, however, to remember that politics usually, like most football games, is a game of "inches." The Senate was nearly held by a few thousand votes; and a shift of maybe 30,000 votes might have changed the house outcome. Or whatever, but the point is, it is always pretty close. That's why I was saying a year ago that we could actually aim for a 60 seat majority. In retrospect, it looks galaxies away, but if the Republicans who should have won, had won (Burns, Allen, Talent), and if those who stood an outside chance of winning had gotten some breaks (Santorum, Chafee, DeWine), well . . . . The point is, the difference between losing control and absolutely dominating is a handful of races, plus a very narrow margin in many other races.

I agree that BECAUSE it has now made Dems incumbents, and set us up for even more difficult 2008 defenses, it looks tough.

My sports analogy on this is that we were on the one yard line about to score, up 20-0, just before the half, and threw an interception that was run back for a TD, and now the other team thinks they have the momentum and all the advantages, and we, on the other hand, missed n opportunity to crush them.

38 posted on 11/14/2006 8:32:10 AM PST by LS
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To: LS

My sports analogy on this is that we were on the one yard line about to score, up 20-0, just before the half, and threw an interception that was run back for a TD, and now the other team thinks they have the momentum and all the advantages, and we, on the other hand, missed n opportunity to crush them.

That was mine too! :-)


39 posted on 11/14/2006 8:36:04 AM PST by DarthVader (Conservatives aren't always right , but Liberals are almost always wrong.)
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To: fortheDeclaration
I'm willing to do that; but I don't know that the voters particularly said they liked our message in places like AZ, where they were mixed (four anti-illegal initiatives passed, Hayworth and Graf lose, Napolitano wins). I don't think conservatives can just blow off the devastating defeats of Santorum and Burns and Talent.

I'm obviously not the guy to talk about this, given my poor predictions, but apparently the public is in one of its "cake and eat it too" moods, where it wants protection from terrorists without the necessary SOCIAL sacrifices (eavesdropping, Gitmo, profiling) to make it happen. I think that's the ONLY thing that can explain the outcome in a place like AZ---plus, as everyone mentions, chameleon Dems who will be "conservative" for about as long as it takes to call the first roll.

40 posted on 11/14/2006 8:36:16 AM PST by LS
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To: LS
The Democrats got on the 'right' of a number of races and that was what made them successful.

The race that was suppose to represent America's desire to end the war in Iraq, with the far left Democrat winning the primary over the hawkish Liberman.

Somehow, Liberman's victory as an independent in a liberal state is going unnoticed by the WSM.

Had the Democrat won, it would have been labeled a great anti-war victory.

Bush is going to continue to do what he regards as his ultimate responsiblity protecting this nation.

To think otherwise is to do a great disservice to him.

He has not forgotten 9/11, and this election is not going to change that.

41 posted on 11/14/2006 8:49:58 AM PST by fortheDeclaration (Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal.4:16))
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To: fortheDeclaration

I do not think he will waver from what he sees as his primary mission. That's why he booted Rummy, not because Rummy wasn't right or hadn't done his job, but because the Dems would focus on Rummy and hearings rather than having to deal with Iraq, which they will have to do now.


42 posted on 11/14/2006 8:56:00 AM PST by LS
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To: Tarnsman

This makes me feel better.

Send it to the White House.

NOW is the time for the Administration to show some guts with the Bolshevik Democrats when they try ramming through their agendas.

Unfortunately they still control the committees and they CAN cut off funds for the war effort if they really want to - but that might be political suicide if the Repubs surprise us and handle it properly.


43 posted on 11/14/2006 8:56:46 AM PST by ZULU (Non nobis, non nobis, Domine, sed nomini tuo da gloriam. God, guts, and guns made America great.)
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To: LS
I do not think he will waver from what he sees as his primary mission. That's why he booted Rummy, not because Rummy wasn't right or hadn't done his job, but because the Dems would focus on Rummy and hearings rather than having to deal with Iraq, which they will have to do now.

I agree, so if the Democrats want to have a fight, they are going to get one.

Moreover, with Liberman in the Senate, we will have the upper hand regarding the war issue.

If the House pushes too hard, Liberman may caucus with us and give us back the majority.

44 posted on 11/14/2006 8:58:19 AM PST by fortheDeclaration (Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal.4:16))
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To: LS
It's important, however, to remember that politics usually, like most football games, is a game of "inches." The Senate was nearly held by a few thousand votes; and a shift of maybe 30,000 votes might have changed the house outcome.

It is about winning and losing and not the margin of victory. A few hundred votes in Florida decided the 2000 election. Those seats lost in the Senate will stay lost for another 6 years at least. You can't create the same conditions and circumstances in each election, which stands by itself. In 2008, we will have different players in the Senate races and a Presidential election. Incumbents have an inherent advantage, which is why it is so difficult to defeat them.

My sports analogy on this is that we were on the one yard line about to score, up 20-0, just before the half, and threw an interception that was run back for a TD, and now the other team thinks they have the momentum and all the advantages, and we, on the other hand, missed n opportunity to crush them.

A better one may be that we lost this regular season game and hope to beat them in the rematch. My point is that something very historic just happened. An incumbent President just lost both houses of Congress in a midterm. It only happened in 1946, 1994, and 2006 as best as I can determine. I find explanations that this is just part of the political cycle to be pollyanish and way off base. I guess I am old enough to remember when the Dems controlled Congress and the Reps were just bystanders when it came to making decisions. Internal Dem politics, the solid, conservative Southern Dems battling the liberal Dems, were what counted in a country that was essentially one party when there was a Dem President. The Reps were happy when a few crumbs were tossed their way.

We have lost some hard earned gains and squandered a real opportunity to cement our power base. It was hubris and a lack of cojones to use our power to achieve what we were sent to Congress for. We also lost two of our brightest starts, Santorum and Allen, who have all but been destroyed as a political force in the future. It was a very costly election.

45 posted on 11/14/2006 9:03:46 AM PST by kabar
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To: fortheDeclaration

Don't count on Lieberman for anything. He will vote with the Dems on all important issues. He will vote with us when it won't matter.


46 posted on 11/14/2006 9:04:16 AM PST by LS
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To: LS
Don't count on Lieberman for anything. He will vote with the Dems on all important issues. He will vote with us when it won't matter.

No, regarding the WOT, Liberman is solid.

He even bucked his own Party on it.

He ran as an Hawk on the war and won.

I have no illusions about Liberman on other issues, but on defense issues regarding WOT, he is going to stand with the President.

The Democrats are not going to get anti-war legislation past in the Senate.

47 posted on 11/14/2006 9:07:37 AM PST by fortheDeclaration (Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth? (Gal.4:16))
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To: kabar
I'm not minimizing it. But the closeness suggests that had we done things a little differently, we would be looking at a severe collapse of the Dems. And I'm not "Pollyannish." Quite the contrary, when I was predicting we would GAIN seats, my view was that ANYTHING short of gains would mean to the drive-by media that we had "lost." Spin is everything.

29-30 seats in the House, whatever we lost, is a lot, but it's no different than if we'd lost the House by 2-3 as far as the media is concerned. And in the Senate, even 1-2 losses probably would have meant we couldn't get our judges because of weaklings like Graham, Snowe, etc.

48 posted on 11/14/2006 9:09:51 AM PST by LS
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To: LS
I'm not minimizing it. But the closeness suggests that had we done things a little differently, we would be looking at a severe collapse of the Dems.

Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. It is a loser's mentality to be consoled by the closeness of the loss or to speculate if only we could have made some slight corrections. Winning isn't everything, it is the only thing. The Dems used to use the same reasoning when they lost. They saw victory in defeat. To use your football analogy, the field goal try to win the game that went wide right spells defeat, whether by a few inches or a few feet.

And I'm not "Pollyannish." Quite the contrary, when I was predicting we would GAIN seats, my view was that ANYTHING short of gains would mean to the drive-by media that we had "lost." Spin is everything.

I read your predictions. Very logical and hopeful, but very wrong. Regardless of how the MSM spins it, the reality of who controls Congress matters much more. I could care less if the MSM spun a few losses on our side as a defeat as long as we controlled Congress or at least one house.

29-30 seats in the House, whatever we lost, is a lot, but it's no different than if we'd lost the House by 2-3 as far as the media is concerned. And in the Senate, even 1-2 losses probably would have meant we couldn't get our judges because of weaklings like Graham, Snowe, etc.

You are confusing how the media reports an event with reality. The media cannot change reality. If we had only lost the House by 2-3 seats, would it really matter in terms of the operation of Congress how it was reported. The media can have its own opinion, but it can't have its own facts.

49 posted on 11/14/2006 9:59:39 AM PST by kabar
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To: kabar
Actually, close does count, and proper analysis of elections is critical---it certainly is NOT "loser's mentality." That's crap.

In 1856, for example, the Republicans found that they had lost a very, very close election. And yes, they made some very slight corrections, identified only four states they needed to capture in 1860, and directed all their energies to those four, which they won, along with the presidency.

It would be a mistake to assume this was some monumental loss, or that the turnout model doesn't work---it can, it just didn't work well this time.

There are plenty of lessons to learn, but firing the coach, the quarterback, and the entire defensive line isn't one of them.

50 posted on 11/14/2006 10:34:25 AM PST by LS
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