Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Blue Indiana: I Won't Say I Told You So; Coming 2010 Republican Victory in Mid-Term Elections

Several months ago, Blue Indiana published a story about how the Democrats were going to fare well in the mid-term elections in 2010 and should pick up seats in Congress. I criticized the story - at the time were were about 1 1/2 years away from the mid-term election in November of 2010. It was way too early to make those kind of predictions. In fact, history strongly suggests otherwise - that the midterm election is generally a disaster for the newly-elected President's party. Take the 1980 landslide Reagan win. 1982 was a disaster for Republicans. in 1992, Clinton and the Democrats scored a big win. In 1994, Democrats got clobbered in the mid-term elections.

If you look at history, time and time, that is the trend - the newly-elected President gets socked in his first mid-term election.

When you study politics you find quickly that for every action, there is a reaction in the body politic. Obama wins big and proposes sweeping health care reform. Now comes the reaction against Obama and health care reform.

In response, Blue Indiana publicly sharply ridiculed me and my suggestion about what would happen during the 2010 elections. Well, yesterday the first election of 2010 happened - a special election to replace the lion of the Senate, Democrat Ted Kennedy was won by a Republican, Scott Brown over Massachusetts Attorney General Marth a Coakley. President Obama pulled out all stops to hold on to the Democratic seat. The election came down to a referendum on Obama and the health care bill, and the Democrats lost.

Massachusetts is no ordinary state. It is the most Democratic state in the country. All U.S. House and Senate members were Democrats. Not a single state-wide elected official was a Democrat. Democrats dominate the Massachusetts state legislature. That changed last night.

For every action there is a reaction. That is a fundamental rule of American politics.

What does it mean for Indiana. Well typically the effect of the mid-term election dissipates the further you go down on the ballot. Senator Evan Bayh, I think is a lot more vulnerable than most Republicans and Democrats realize. A big pot of money can only do so much against a national tide against the President's party. Bayh also made a lot of liberals in his own party's always risky to alienate your base right before a close election.

Down the ballot, I think there will be enough effect that the Republicans take control of the Indiana House right before redistricting. Locally, it's too big of a hill for Republicans to climb in Marion County even with a national Republican tide. Don't expect Republicans to win any of the Marion County races.

Oh, and Blue Indiana, I won't say I told you so. I promise.


M Theory said...

Paul...I'm trying hard to think of a political prediction you have made that was not spot on.

Wilson46201 said...

didn't Paul and Gary and you all predict that Mayor Ballard would be the best thing since sliced bread? Now you declare him Toast...

Paul K. Ogden said...

No, Wilson, I didn't predict that. But I didn' predict he'd be the disaster he has been either. I am only good at predicting election results, not performance in office.

HFFT, I predicted Daniels would lose Marion County. I blew that one big time. It was quite a performance by JLT to be so bad as to lose Marion County while Obam was winning it big.