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Friday, January 1, 2010

GOP "Poised for Strong Comeback" in 2010 Mid-term Elections - LA Times

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the Republican Party stands to potentially make a big comeback in the 2010 Mid-term elections:

After losing the White House and nearly 70 congressional seats in the last two elections, Republicans are poised for a strong comeback in 2010, with significant gains likely in the House and a good chance of boosting their numbers in the Senate and statehouses across the country.

The results could hamper President Obama's legislative efforts as he prepares to seek reelection and reshape the political landscape for a decade beyond, as lawmakers redraw congressional and state political boundaries to reflect the next census.

All 435 House seats, 36 in the Senate and the governorships of 37 states will be on the ballot in November. Democrats are favored to retain the Massachusetts seat of the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy in a special election Jan. 19.

Some of the Democrats' most prominent figures, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut, are in serious danger as they seek reelection. Both would probably lose if elections were held today.

"It all adds up to a pretty bad year for the party in power," said Jennifer Duffy, an analyst with the nonpartisan Cook Political Report. "How bad? I'm not sure we know yet." . . . .

The problem for Democrats is evident in polling, which shows a precipitous slide in Obama's job approval rating, from a high of about 80% before he took office to 48% in the latest aggregation by pollster.com, a political website. The fortunes of the two major parties often rise or fall with their leader in the White House: Bill Clinton, bruised by his failed effort to pass healthcare reform, had a 46% approval rating in 1994 when Republicans took over Congress. Bush, plagued by the unpopular war in Iraq, was at 38% when Democrats won control in 2006.

More worrisome for Democrats is the likelihood that many of their voters will stay home. Turnout always falls in nonpresidential election years, and that is why strategists closely gauge voter interest. Repeated surveys have found Republicans much more animated than Democrats; a Wall Street Journal/NBC poll in mid-December found that 56% of Republicans were "very interested," compared with 46% of Democrats. . . . MORE
The LA Times is not exactly a conservative journal. But they recognize just how much things have changed in a year's time. Most of those on the Left would have never believed their outlook could change this much, this quickly.

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