SOMETIMES I wonder if the Republicans have already given up on Congress this election year. Whether by circumstance or by design, the Democrats seem to have taken all of the advantages as they seek to expand their majorities, and they are using them. The latest, from the Wall Street Journal’s number crunchers, is that a slew of Democratic challengers are raising lots of money, coming close to or surpassing their opponents. Established GOP senators such as Alaska’s Ted Stevens, North Carolina’s Elizabeth Dole and Maine’s Susan Collins all face challengers with large war chests. On the House side, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee nurses a large money edge over its GOP rival, and Democratic incumbents are holding their own as well, leaving cash for unseating Republicans. It feels like the Republicans just don’t want it.
Democrats are also reusing some of their winning tactics from 2006. Real Clear Politics’s Reid Wilson examines how the Democrats have embraced the centre in their Congressional recruiting, while the Republican caucus becomes more conservative. A big question in the caucus has been whether seeking ideological purity on the right will make the GOP a permanent minority party again while the Democrats rebuild their big tent. This is more likely than not, barring a period of Democratic corruption and misrule. Republican congressional leaders had better learn to run the opposite direction and, for that matter, to raise more money.
Monday, July 21, 2008
The Democracy in America blog reports: