History shows the minority party almost always making up seats in the first mid-term election of a new President, and the conventional wisdom actually adds even more fuel to the fire of Democrat losses this time around - given the underhanded tactics and the rather obvious mistake of massive government expansion in clear opposition to the American people, and we have the makings of a political slaughter.
But just how bad will that slaughter be? Just weeks ago, the GOP was thought to get lucky if it would win the 40 seats that would put it back into a simple majority. Now, we see the GOP Minority Leader suggesting that 100 seats isn't out of the question (though this isn't the first time that number has been tossed out). Really? Could that happen? Let's look at the facts we already know.
Many national-level Democrats are retiring voluntarily, including some surprises that should have been in 'safe' districts - having walked the plank for Obama's radical Leftist agenda, they know they'll never win re-election. The Senate Majority Leader is way, way, way behind in his own race. The GOP's base is far more motivated to turn out at the polls.
That's bad enough, but today's news creates an even more terrifying picture for Democrats, starting with the revelation that David Obey will announce his retirement. You may not know his name, but this guy is one of the major power players in Congress. He has been in Congress since 1969, and is the Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, which means he essentially writes the checks for the U.S. government and thus wields an incredible amount of power and influence. He'd already begun an aggressive campaign against this likely Republican opponent, and is not giving any reasons like health concerns, so the most reasonable assumption for why a man in this position would voluntarily retire is simply that he is being crushed in his internal polling. For a power player like this to be hopelessly behind has to cause tremors through the Democrat establishment. Perhaps even more disturbing, though, is that Obey's seat is considered by at least one top election predictor to be more 'safe' than 62 other races, and as 'safe' as another 35. In short, if Obey can lose badly, pretty much any other elected Democrat can, too. The final blow (for the moment) can be found in the returns from the primary elections last night in three key states: Ohio, Indiana, and North Carolina. The short version there is that Democrat turnout was between 15-35% lower than in 2008 despite having more registered Dems in these states. GOP turnout, on the other hand, is roughly the same amount higher.
It appears that the bigger question is not how many seats the GOP can win back, but whether or not the GOP will get overconfident.
Regardless, the key for the GOP's success lies in getting back to the Founding principles of limited government, fiscal responsibility, strong national defense, and traditional values. If they hammer away at the issues from these perspectives (including a total repeal of the ever-more-unpopular DemCare), they can truly have an historic November, and one that will hopefully put the country back on the right track. The most important thing to keep in mind is that these Dems knew they'd be kicked out when America realized what they were doing, and they did it anyway because they were hoping for a permanent change in the national culture. We have just a couple of election cycles to stand up and refuse that permanent change by voting in people who will throw off the shackles of big government and return America to its proper foundations.
A political slaughter? It's looking more and more like annihilation instead. But will it be a Pyrrhic one? That is truly the question that should keep us up at night.
There's my two cents.