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Posts Tagged ‘Joseph Donnelly’
One of the most satisfying results of last night’s election was just how many of Bart Stupak’s block of ObamaCare flippers went down in flames.
If you remember back to the ObamaCare debates, Stupak’s bloc of “Pro-Life Democrats” was never, ever, ever, ever going to vote for a bill that included government funding of abortions. That is, right up until they did.
As shown below, on November 2, the clear majority of them paid the price for betraying their principles as well as their constituents. Unless otherwise noted, the election margins below are taken from this CBS table. Since WordPress doesn’t let me set font colors to red, I’ve marked GOP pickups in bold.
- Rep. Jerry Costello of Illinois’ 12th district defeated Republican Teri Newman
- Rep. Joseph Donnelly of Indiana’ 2nd district edged Republican Jackie Walorski by less than 3,000 votes.
- Rep. Brad Ellsworth left his Indiana’s 8th Congressional seat for an unsuccessful run for the Senate. Republican Larry Bucshon flipped the seat by defeating Trent Van Haaften by almost 40,000 votes.
- Rep. Bart Stupak retired from Michigan’s 1st congressional district when it became apparent his ObamaCare betrayal doomed his electoral chances. Republican Dan Benishek flipped the seat by defeating Gary McDowell by 25,000 votes.
- Rep. James Oberstar of Minnesota lost to Republican Chip Cravaack. You may also remember Oberstar for racking up only a single in-district donation to his reelection campaign.
- Rep. Steve Driehaus of Ohio’s 1st district lost to Republican Steve Chabot by 23,000 votes.
- Rep. Charles Wilson of Ohio’s 6th district lost to Republican Bill Johnson by 10,000 votes.
- Rep. Marcy Kaptur of Ohio’s 9th district beat James Iott (AKA Nazi Costume Guy) by a wide margin.
- Rep. Kathy Dahlkemper of Pennsylvania’s 3rd district lost to Republican Mike Kelly by over 20,000 votes.
- Rep. Paul Kanjorski of Pennsylvania’s 11th district lost to Lou Barletta by over 15,000 votes.
- Rep. Solomon Ortiz of Texas’ 27th district loses to Republican Blake Farenthold by less than 1,000 votes.
That’s eight out of eleven Stupak bloc flippers whose seats are now in the hands of the GOP. And of those eleven races, I correctly picked ten, missing only Donnelly’s narrow victory in Indiana’s second district (which I originally had down as a longshot).
A few lessons:
- Voters hate ObamaCare.
- They hate congressmen who break promises. (Republicans should take special note of this one anytime they contemplate letting a GOP-controlled congress slip back to the old free-spending ways of the Bush43 years.)
- They hate Blue Dog Democrats who vote like liberals when the really important issues are on the line.
- Voters may be wising up to the fact that it doesn’t matter how much a Democrat swears up and down how Pro-Life, fiscally conservative, pro-gun, etc. they are; when push comes to shove, they’ll always cave in and vote with their liberal leadership.
As a reward for laying down their careers in the cause of ObamaCare, at least Blue Dogs have the consolation of the respect and gratitude of liberal activists everywhere. Ha, just kidding. The Daily Kossacks are saying “we can do without their sabotage.”
Oh yes, I’m sure that running Democrats ideologically closer to Nancy Pelosi than Dan Boren in places like Indiana, Pennsylvania and Ohio is a great way to pick up seats. I encourage you to get started on that right away.
With the election tomorrow, I thought it was high time to offer up my own election predictions.
I have carefully and scientifically evaluated each and every House and Senate race, taking into account length of incumbency, previous voting trends for each district and state, fund-raising advantage, the most recent polls, and the fact that every preceding clause in this sentence prior to this one has been a complete and utter lie.
I have looked at a lot of polls and data but damn, there are only so many hours in the day. My predictions are based on general national mood, gut-feeling, and detailed looks at trends for select races.
This is going to be worse for the Democrats than 1994. The rise of the Netroots and the overwhelming support among the traditional news media dangerously blinded liberal insiders from how badly out-of-sync with the rest of the country they had become, and their insistence to push onward with ObamaCare despite widespread opposition and a lousy economy turned what was already going to be a bad year for them into a once-in-a-lifetime political slaughter.
I predict that the Democrats will lose 67 House seats.
As I admitted above, that’s not a wild-assed guess, but a guestimate based on current polling data and news on individual races. I don’t see Republicans gaining less than 50 seats, and there’s an outside possibility they could get 100. To my mind, it’s much more likely they’ll gain more than 67 than less than 50.
Among the individual House races, I predict all the Stupak-bloc flippers except Marcy Kaptur (who had the luck to draw Nazi Uniform Guy as her opponent) and Jerry Costello (much as I appreciate GOP candidate Teri Newman popping in to say the race is tied, I just don’t see any traction at all in a 54% Obama district; I’d love to be surprised) will lose, including:
- Rep. Joseph Donnelly of Indiana
- Indiana’s open 8th congressional district (formerly held by Brad Ellsworth)
- Michigan’s open 1st congressional seat (formerly held by Bart Stupak)
- James Oberstar of Minnesota
- Steve Driehaus of Ohio
- Charles Wilson of Ohio
- Kathy Dahlkemper of Pennsylvania
- Paul Kanjorski of Pennsylvania
- Solomon Ortiz of Texas
Additionally, I’m predicting that all of the following Democrats representing districts that voted for McCain in 2008 lose their jobs:
- Bobby Bright of Alabama
- Arkansas’ open 1st congressional district (formerly held by Marion Barry (AKA “the other Marion Barry”))
- Arkansas’ open 2nd congressional district (formerly held by Vic Snyder)
- Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona
- Harry Mitchell of Arizona
- Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona
- John Salazar of Colorado
- Betsy Markey of Colorado
- Allen Boyd of Florida
- Suzanne Kosmas of Florida
- Jim Marshall of Georgia
- Baron Hill of Indiana
- Ben Chandler of Kentucky
- Louisiana’s open 3rd congressional district (formerly held by Charlie Melancon)
- Frank Kratovil of Maryland
- Ike Skelton of Missouri
- Travis Childers of Mississippi
- Gene Taylor of Mississippi
- Mike McIntyre of North Carolina
- Heath Schuler of North Carolina
- Earl Pomeroy of North Dakota
- Harry Teague of New Mexico
- Michael McMahon of New York
- New York’s open 29th congressional district (formerly held by Eric Massa)
- John Boccieri of Ohio
- Zack Space of Ohio
- Christopher Carney of Pennsylvania
- Mark Critz of Pennsylvania (serving the remainder of the late John P. Murtha’s term)
- John Spratt of South Carolina
- Stephanie Sandlin of South Dakota
- Lincoln Davis of Tennessee
- Tennessee’s open 6th congressional district (formerly held by Bart Gordon)
- Tennessee’s open 8th congressional district (formerly held by John Tanner)
- Chet Edwards of Texas
- Tom Perriello of Virginia
- Rick Boucher of Virginia
- West Virgina’s first district (held by Allan Mollohan, who was defeated in the Democratic primaries)
That’s 46 seats right there, and I think there’s easily another 21 seats to be had in districts that went narrowly for Obama in 2008 to provide the final margin of victory.
I predict that the Democrats will lose 10 Senate seats.
The Senate is a tougher nut to flip this year, and as I set down to gauge Republican chances, I was shocked to find that, despite insider predictions, I actually had them winning ten seats to take control of the Senate. Running down the Senate races that Real Clear Politics shows as tossups I was only getting nine seats, but then I remembered that Blanche Lincoln is losing so badly in Arkansas that they had that down as a safe Republican flip.
Republicans should take over the following ten Senate seats:
- West Virginia
Much as I’d like to see an upset in California, I don’t see Carly Fiorina getting any traction in an overwhelmingly blue state; I think the out-migration of California’s best and brightest due to the high tax rates, crummy economy, the overwhelmingly powerful public sector unions and a near-bankrupt government (all related phenomena) has, ironically, made Californian even bluer.
The two races of the ten that will be most difficult for Republicans to pull off are Washington and West Virginia. Washington may be the tightest, simply because the Left Coast is so blue, but Rossi has been steadily gaining on Murray, and actually pulled ahead in the latest PPP poll. And PPP usually has a Democratic bias, so in a wave election, you have to give it to the Republican if polling is within the margin of error.
In West Virginia, I’m going to go out on a limb and predict a victory for Republican John Raese even though Joe Manchin is up four points in the most recent poll, for the following reasons:
- McCain won West Virginia by 13.1 points in 2008, which was four points above the poll RCP average. Asking Manchin to run 14 points better in 2010 than Obama did in 2008 is a pretty tall order.
- The state has been trending Republican for years. It went for Clinton over both Bush41 and Dole, but for Bush43 over Gore by 6.3%, and Bush43 over Kerry by 12.9%.
- West Virginia fits the classic demographic pattern for “Reagan Democrats”: It’s 94.4% white, and is relatively rural and blue collar, and with a household income significantly below the national average. Those are the very voters that are abandoning Democrats this year.
- Along those same lines, Hillary Clinton beat Obama handily here in 2008, even though Obama had all but clinched the nomination at the time. West Virginia voters fit the classic “Jacksonian” profile, the portions of the Democratic base that has been most alienated by Obama’s policies.
- Say what you will about the late Senator Robert Byrd, but he was extraordinarily popular in his home state right up to the end. But his name isn’t on the top of the ballot this time around, and without that reminder of their old “born and bred” Democratic allegiance to remind them, 2010 may finally be the year when remaining West Virginia conservative Democrats make the switch to the GOP.
- The areas that have been most fruitful for Democratic fraud efforts in the past have been urban enclaves with strong Democratic minority machine politics, which are pretty much absent here.
- Logic dictates that if that this truly is a nationalized “wave” election, it will show up strongly here.
Honestly, I think the Democrats taking the Washington senate seat is more likely that West Virginia.
So the Republicans take both House and Senate in an electoral slaughter unprecedented in modern times. So I have foretold, and so it shall be!
And if you disagree, post your own predictions below.
- Joseph Donnelly vs. Jackie Walorski for Indiana’s second congressional district.
- Barney Frank vs. ex-Marine Sean Bielat for Massachusetts’ Fourth Congressional District.
Republicans aren’t leading all those races, and there’s no guarantee they’ll actually win the ones they are leading, and even beyond that there’s no guarantee that if they do win, it will be outside the margin of the usual Democratic fraud.
My current assessment is in line with the conventional wisdom: Roughly 100 seats are in play under the broader definition, and it’s hard to see Republicans winning fewer than 40 of them. The ceiling depends on how angry the country is on November 2, but it is pretty darn high . . . 60? 70? 80?
The possible peak of the wave keeps getting larger…
All across the country, Democrats running for office “are embracing gun owners’ rights [and] winning favor from the National Rifle Association.”
Overall this is a good development, as it shows how unpopular gun control is outside of a few extremely liberal urban enclaves. However, voters should not mistake a politician taking the popular side of an issue with deeply held belief. As long as Nancy Pelosi remains Speaker of the House of Representatives, no House Democrat can be considered Pro-Second Amendment, stated positions and NRA endorsements not withstanding.
Every one of those “pro-gun Democrats” is probably just as committed to Second Amendment issues as Bart Stupak was to Pro-Life issues. Remember him? He was a hero to Pro-Life forces and was even going to receive a “Defender of Life Award” for refusing to cave in on including taxpayer-funded abortions for ObamaCare.
That is, right up until he folded-up like a three-card-monte table when Pelosi put the pressure on him. He was bought off for an empty promise and a handful of magic beans. But it wasn’t just Stupak who caved. There were ten other “staunch Pro-Life Democrats” who folded with him:
- Rep. Jerry Costello of Illinois.
- Rep. Joseph Donnelly of Indiana
- Rep. Brad Ellsworth of Indiana
- Rep. James Oberstar of Minnesota
- Rep. Steve Driehaus of Ohio
- Rep. Marcy Kaptur of Ohio
- Rep. Charles Wilson of Ohio
- Rep. Kathy Dahlkemper of Pennsylvania
- Rep. Paul Kanjorski of Pennsylvania
- Rep. Solomon Ortiz of Texas
(And all of whom just happened to have raked in huge earmarks after their vote.)
Look at all those “Pro-Life Democrats” willing to fund abortions with taxpayer money when Nancy Pelosi snapped her fingers. Now ask yourself: Were any of these Democrats any less “Pro-Life” than your Democratic congressman is “Pro-Second Amendment?”
Moreover, many of those “Pro-Gun Democrats” are the same “Pro-Life Democrats” who flipped for Pelosi. Take a look at their NRA ratings from 2008 (the NRA hasn’t released all their 2010 rankings yet):
- Joseph Donnelly? A.
- Brad Ellsworth? A.
- Charles Wilson? A.
- Paul Kanjorski? A.
- Solomon Ortiz? A.
All of them betrayed their “deep beliefs” on abortion. There is absolutely no reason to believe they wouldn’t do the same thing on gun control.
The NRA can only rate votes and questionnaires, it can’t tell when someone is lying, or who will fold when enough pressure is applied. The Democratic nutroots, their funding sources, their staffers, and the entire media establishment is just as anti-gun as they are pro-abortion. That’s the “reality-based community” Democratic politicians live in. That’s the same community that will be lauding them for their “courage” when they betray voters’ trust to vote how Pelosi wants them to. It will also be the same community offering them cushy job opportunities should those same voters retire them in November. Democratic House members only have to face voters once every two years; they have to face liberal insiders every single working day.
If you don’t think Democrats would still love to ban guns, take a look at how Democratic Mayors like Richard Daley of Chicago and Michael Nutter of Philadelphia want to make an end-run around that whole pesky Constitution: “American gun manufacturers should be held responsible in the World Court, since American-made guns are used in violent crime elsewhere in the world.” I’m sure that a World Court ruling against gun ownership would provide Obama, Pelosi and Reid with just the political excuse they need to start “reluctantly” drafting gun control legislation. And Pelosi herself has made no secret of her own gun control agenda.
The only safe course of action is to assume that, should gun control make it back up to the top of the Democratic agenda, any “Pro-Gun Democrat” could flip their vote if that’s the one Pelosi needs to assure the bill’s passage. And they only way to prevent that from happening is to vote Pelosi’s Democrats out of power come November, no matter whether some of them have an “A” rating from the NRA or not.