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Third, GOP candidates enjoyed a financial advantage over the final two weeks of the campaign. Democrats raised a lot of money this campaign, so the GOP’s edge is not as great as it has been in the past, but many competitive Democrats still lag behind Republicans in terms of the number of campaign ads they can air during the home stretch.
The GOP’s financial advantage partially explains the fourth reason for Republican confidence — their superior ground game. Deployed to devastating effect two years ago, the Republicans’ voter turnout operation delivers voters to the polls in a manner that the Democrats simply cannot match.
In blowout races, this turnout advantage will not make the difference. But in the closely contested races, it will be worth three to five (probably decisive) points.
Fifth, the most recent round of redistricting made identifying Republican voters that much easier. Thanks to a plethora of gerrymandered districts, both parties’ incumbents are safer than they have ever been.
Short of retirement or indictment, many incumbents are simply undefeatable, so reliable is their financial and electoral support base. Only a national political tsunami could unseat a large number. Short of such a seismic wave, the vast majority — most of whom are Republicans — will be reelected.
Finally, George W. Bush is an asset to select Republican candidates in the campaign’s waning days. The president and his counterterrorism policies are still well regarded in some western states and in much of the South, where he is spending the campaign’s final days in a targeted attempt to bolster Republican turnout. The rhetorical ammunition provided by John Kerry’s botched Iraq war joke enhanced this Bush Effect.
Think of the fun that will ensue on Capitol Hill if the Republicans win a one-seat squeaker. The three certainties are: party discipline will assume an importance akin to a parliamentary system; virtually no significant piece of legislation will be passed; and the next special election to fill a House vacancy will be a negative and expensive drama of operatic proportion. Let the gamesmanship commence.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?