August 3, 2005
-- by Thomas Leavitt
So, Paul Hackett turned a 75%/25% Red/Blue district into a 52%/48% one, despite somewhat late intervention by the blogosphere, etc. Pretty impressive. Bodes well for 2006.
Here's a thought: maybe having Bush re-elected in 2004 was a GOOD thing. Wait. No. Hold on. Hear me out. Yeesh.
Here's the pitch: while the Presidency is important, in many ways, it is essentially a reactive position, dependent on the Congress for policy implementation. You can replace a President every four years, and control of the office shifts fairly often.
Control of Congress does NOT shift very often. If Hackett's level of success is indicative (setting aside any exceptional aspects), then the six-year itch factor is very much in play, and Republican control of the House (at least), and maybe even the Senate could be threatened. That, folks, would be huge: even potentially enough to compensate for the re-election of Bush. Or not? Comments welcome.
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I have a canned comment that I always leave whenever I see the old "let things get bad enough that people wake up" argument:
Ernst Thalmann thought the same thing.
He died in Buchenwald.
Posted by: Dave Johnson at August 3, 2005 5:16 PM
I think that Dave Johnson is right. I don't think that Bush being elected was a good thing...but some good could possibly come out of it, if the Democrats play their cards right.
Posted by: Marie Antoinette at August 3, 2005 5:32 PM
... basically, I'm just looking for a silver lining. Thinking that history may look back on Bush's re-election as the high tide moment for the Republican take over, and that his actions in office during his second term spelled doom for the Republican majority in the House and Senate... precipitating a shift in control of these bodies that no one anticipated occuring anytime soon.
History of the future:
House seat after House seat that had previously been won by 60%+ Republican majorities fell to the Democratic Party in 2006... even Republican incumbents occupying previously "safe" seats felt the heat, as 40% percent margins of victory fell into the single digits, or disappeared entirely. Control of the House shifted to the Democratic Party for the first time in half a generation, and all indications were that a similar shift would take place in the Senate in 2008 - in any case, the 1 vote Republican majority in the Senate and the loss of the House meant a near total halt to implementation of the Bush agenda, a rapid re-evaluation of the country's priorities abroad (including a swift and definite timetable for an end to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan), and made the nomination of John Roberts Bush's first and last opportunity to significantly shift the court's makeup.
The Democratic Party was to not lose control of Congress again for another generation and a half (what happened then, with the emergence of the Green Party, is another story), and held the Presidency through much of this time as well.
The Republican Party collapsed shortly thereafter, as the nomination of former Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore for President on a wave of anti-gay/pro-Federal Marriage Amendment sentiment among socially conservative primary voters lead to a mass exodus of more moderate and classically conservative Republicans to the right wing of the Democratic Party, leaving the Republicans in a permanent minority even in their former strongholds of the deep South.
Posted by: Thomas Leavitt at August 4, 2005 12:13 AM
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