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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Tempering Dem Euphoria

Things are going extremely well for the Democrats. Lest we get too overconfident, however, here’s a pair of articles to temper Democratic euphoria: Don Frederick’s Top of the Ticket article “A daunting reality for House Democrats” at the L.A. Times notes:

60 Democrats are running in House districts carried by President Bush in 2004; only eight Republicans are running in districts carried by his Democratic opponent, John Kerry.

Frederick flags another article in the Politico “The angry voter: Bad news for Dems” by John F. Harris and Jim VandeHei, in which the authors riff on sour attitudes toward congress as a potential problem for Dems:

From the Democratic perspective, there is definitely a case to be made for alarm. It is based on the history of recent decades that shows whenever voters get this unhappy, unpredictable things can happen.

They also quote TDS co-editor Stan Greenberg: “We’ve never seen people as angry and frustrated as they are now, … even more than in ’92.” But Greenberg adds,

It’s certainly true that people are disgruntled with Congress and lukewarm about the Democrats in general…However modest Democrats’ numbers are, Republicans’ numbers are much worse and dropping…The main story is Republicans are seen as backing the Iraq war, backing Bush and blocking change.

The Politico article also cites a Mark Mellman poll showing Congressional Dems have a favorable rating of 48 percent, with 44 percent unfavorable, compared to 32 favorable for congresional Republicans, with 62 percent unfavorable.
Hardly a case for “alarm.” Cautious confidence would be more like it.

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