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Tuesday, November 7th 2006

Could It Be A Disappointing Day For the Dems?

Of course conservative bloggers think so,

[A] midterm switch of 35-40 seats would hardly be unprecedented. Such “waves” occurred in the second midterms of Eisenhower, Nixon/Ford, and Reagan. The only reason it didn’t for Clinton was because he had his wave in the first midterm election in 1994.

Thus, the big expectations seemed reasonable when initially formed. However, even with the GOP having its share of problems this cycle, the numbers simply don’t support it. Real Clear Politics has been tracking House races for quite a while, and identifies only 47 GOP seats as competitive, as opposed to 6 districts for the Democrats. 20 of the GOP seats lean to the GOP, which makes only 27 of them really at risk — and the Democrats have to win more than half of them to take control of the House.

That being said, they have a good shot at doing just that. However, while that would give them the House majority, it might be an almost unworkable one, especially if the GOP retains control of the Senate. It’s a prescription for gridlock, a massive kicking of the can to 2008, when the presidency is the prize. That isn’t what the Democrats want, and in fact it would give them the worst of both worlds. They would have to formulate policy and go on the record with their platform, and then sit and watch it flounder for two years as conservative Democrats who win in this cycle pull the plug on tax hikes and spending sprees.