November 3rd, 2010 at 06:59am
Updated 8:23am with details of the races I forgot about
Well here we are again, another election is upon us. It doesn’t seem like two years since the last major US election, but it has been two years and, more importantly, this election looks like it will have a much better outcome than the last one.
By the looks of the polls, the Republicans will take back the House of Representatives in a landslide, while the Senate will be a much closer affair. The Real Clear Politics average of the major polls is predicting that the House will go to the Republicans by a margin of 224 to 167, with another 44 seats in doubt, while the Senate is narrowly favouring the Democrats 48-45, with a further 7 seats in doubt.
It’s pretty clear then that the Republicans will take control of the House, which is probably the more important of the two houses to gain control of, as this will allow them to reign in the spending bills. The Senate is less clear, but as long as Sharron Angle of Nevada can defeat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, I think the point will have been made. Nevada is one of the closer races, but Sharron Angle is 2.7% ahead of Harry Reid on the polling average, so there is a decent chance of a god outcome here.
My belief is that Republicans will take over the House, and narrowly miss out on control of the Senate. In many ways I think this is preferable to a complete take over as it lowers the expectations of voters. Rather than expecting everything to be fixed by elected representatives in two years, this type of outcome is more of a “trial period” with voters being able to watch both sides of politics battle it out, and then give a side a clearer mandate at the next election.
That said, if the swing is as large as the polls are predicting, then it’s about as clear as it can be that voters are rejecting Obama’s flavour of socialism, especially if neither House Speaker Nancy Pelosi or Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are returned to their post.
Rasmussen Reports, the most accurate of the polling companies at the 2008 election, published their latest “Generic Congressional Ballot” yesterday, with the result in favour of the Republicans 51%-39%. The Republicans have led this poll since June last year, but this is the first time in that period that they’ve been above 50%. Rasmussen Reports crunched the numbers and came to the conclusion that:
If these results hold, it could lead to the election of more Republicans to Congress than at any time since the 1920s.
Figures like that indicate a clear mandate, even in an environment with different parties controlling each house. In fact, if the numbers do occur that way, then the only reason why the Republicans won’t have taken the Senate is that only a third of it is up for election. I still do prefer the idea of the split victory though for the psychological reasons I outlined above.
So, what are the key issues for voters? Scott Rasmussen of Rasmussen Reports explains:
Voters trust Republicans more than Democrats on eight out of 10 important issues regularly tracked by Rasmussen Reports including the economy and health care.
Currently, 58% of Likely Voters favor repeal of the health care law passed earlier this year.
The issues which Republicans were favoured on are issues which can be broadly put in to three categories, things which Democrats want to tax-and-spend on, things which Democrats want to socialise (some can be put in to both of those categories), and things which affect national security.
Republicans favoured on: Social security, health care, economy, national security, taxes, Iraq, Afghanistan, Immigration.
Democrats favoured on: Government ethics (not sure why, given the number of tax cheats Obama tried to appoint) and education.
When you look at the history of the Generic Ballot, the disillusionment in Obama’s “hope and change” nonsense becomes even clearer.
The Generic Ballot results were much different during the last two election cycles when Democrats regularly had large leads heading into the 2006 and 2008 elections. The two parties were very close through the spring of 2009, but in June, around the time Democrats began their campaign for health care reform, Republicans pulled ahead for good.
While the margin has varied somewhat from week-to-week, Republicans have been consistently ahead on the Generic Ballot since June of last year, and their lead has run as high as 12 points and as low as three points. When Barack Obama first took office as president, the Democrats enjoyed a seven-point lead on the Generic Ballot.
So with that in mind, the important thing in this election isn’t just that Republicans win, but that conservatives win. To that end, there are a few key races to which I’ll be paying some extra attention as the day goes on.
Here’s my list of the races which I’ll be following closely, and the people I support. I may have missed a few.
Nevada Senate: I’m proud to say that I endorse Sharron Angle. Sharron is a great conservative candidate, and we need to defeat Harry Reid, one of the chief architects of the Obama agenda.
Florida Senate: Marco Rubio is another vital person. He has a 17 point lead, so it’s fairly safe to say that he’ll be a great addition to the Senate once he is sworn in.
Kentucky Senate: Rand Paul
Alaska Senate: Joe Miller. If we can rid the Senate of Lisa Murkowski, that would be lovely. The fact that this vile woman lost the Republican Primary and was so insistent that the state must have been mistaken that she is running as a write-in candidate says about all that needs to be said.
Delaware: Christine O’Donnell. A lovely lady who, in much the same way as Sarah Palin, has endured every smear imaginable through her campaign. The mainstream media even tried to claim that separation of church and state is in the Constitution in an effort to smear her.
Colorado Senate: Ken Buck.
Utah Senate: Mike Lee.
Updated! South Carolina: Jim DeMint. I knew I forgot something…and it was Jim, oh how could I have forgotten about Jim. The stalwart of the Senate looks to be safe. Rasmussen have him holding a 58%-21% lead. Here’s a man who would make a great President, but for now will continue to be a great Senator.
Minnesota: Michele Bachmann. Quite possibly the most impressive conservative candidate I’ve heard in the lead-up to the election. Michele is a long way ahead in the polls so she should be safe. Michele receives my House endorsement.
Florida: Allen West
I know that there’s another one, but I can’t for the life of me remember which race it is.
There are two in particular which are important to me. The most important of all though is:
Arizona: Jan Brewer. Jan is the Governor behind Arizona’s anti-illegal immigrant laws. It’s sad that various courts have produced dodgy rulings in a blatant effort to allow illegal immigrants to flood in to the US. The good news is that Jan leads by about ten points in the polls. One wonders if we may see her run for higher office one day. I do hope so. Jan is another candidate whom I am proud to say that I endorse.
Florida: Rick Scott. Another absolutely awesome candidate.
Updated! California: Meg Whitman. OK, make that three. Meg has also endured many smears, including an incomprehensible lawsuit-which-isn’t-a-lawsuit from deranged lawyer Gloria Allred who is probably in the employ of Meg’s opponent Jerry Brown. Meg is behind by four points according to Rasmussen. The one thing which you can be sure of in this race is that, with the Governator now out of the picture, this will be the focus of international media attention, especially if Democrat Jerry Brown wins it.
Updated! Nevada: Brian Sandoval. This one really only interests me as Harry Reid’s son Rory is Brian opponent, and the Reid dynasty does not need to continue. Brian has an extremely comfortable lead here.
I’d love to endorse each and every candidate that I’ve highlighted here, but to ensure that my endorsement really means something, I am saving it for my absolute favourite candidate in each type of race. I do support each an every one of the candidates that I have highlighted though.
As for election coverage, well I’ll be doing my best between other things during the day to keep myself up-to-date and to post updates here, but there are a few places I recommend.
First up Casey Hendrickson and Heather Kydd will be on (running??) KDOX‘s coverage from 9pm US West Coast time (3pm Canberra time). They’ll be on the air for at least three hours.
FOX News is probably the best place for continuous election coverage. I’ll be checking their website constantly.
Mark Levin will be on the air from 6pm-9pm US East Coast time as results start to roll in (9am-12pm Canberra time). My plan is to listen to him until the end of his show and then switch to Rusty Humphries followed by Casey and Heather on KDOX for the rest of the day.
And I can’t go past Drudge Report for ongoing highlighting of all the important stories and some which will be overlooked by most others until they get a mention here. Drudge will be refreshing in my browser all day.
I know that the majority of the readership of this blog is Australian, but to all of my American readers, if you have not voted yet, you only have a handful of hours left. GO AND VOTE! There are many tight races in which your vote could be the one which gets a great candidate over the line, and many not-so-close races where we still need people to vote as we can’t assume that candidates will win simply because the polls tell us that they will.
It’s going to be an interesting day…and I really do think that by the end of it I’m going to be able to say that Obama and his horrifying socialist agenda is the best thing to happen to the conservative movement in years.