Did you read that headline without destroying your keyboard? At this point to sound the alarm that the mid-terms are f*cked up for the Dems, the White House receives only a tiny violin here.
Who couldn't see this coming? If the Republicans regain control on the Hill after the midterms, it's because of the short attention span/low-information public that thinks the Bush economy could be turned around in 2 years. You think the GOP didn't know that after McCain/Palin '08 went down in flames? Half measure stimulus, half-measure "change." So predictable to find things where they are. Sam Stein:
With polls and prognosticators predicting a massive Republican rout -- and the likely election of uncompromising, out-of-the-mainstream conservatives -- in the fall, the Obama administration has begun raising dire alarms in its pitch to voters. Remember the Bush administration, the argument goes. It could be worse.
"I saw that [Alaska GOP Senate candidate] Joe Miller said that he would abolish Social Security if he had the chance and he is not alone," said chief adviser David Axelrod. "This is akin to what [Nevada GOP Senate candidate] Sharron Angle has said in Nevada and also a number of these other Republicans. So, this could go one step beyond the policies of the Bush administration to something more extreme than we have seen."
In an interview with the Huffington Post from his West Wing office late last week, Axelrod's criticism of the president's Republican critics were some of the most sweeping to date. The senior adviser called the GOP strategy for scuffling Obama, "insidious" if not "clever."
Republican leadership, he ventured, has "put emphasis on throttling things down... hoping that the mess that they created... would be so difficult to clean up that they could then blame us for their problems."
The one thing I couldn't have predicted was how thoroughly Rahm, Messina, Axelrod and Co. would piss on the Dem progressive base in order to win over some phantom slice of the American public. The tepid policy initiatives and caving on so many issues has left pols on the Hill running for re-election without a strong narrative or reason to be sent back other than "the GOP is more evil."
Nate Silver of 538.com, now writing for the NYT, has this to say about the Dem dilemma.
The reasons for the Democrats' decline are, as we say in the business, overdetermined. That is, there are no lack of hypotheses to explain it: lots of causes for this one effect. The economy? Sure. Unpopular legislation like health care? Yep. Some "bad luck" events like the Gulf Oil spill? Mmm-hmm. The new energy breathed into conservatives by the Tea Party movement? Uh-huh.
And this hardly exhausts the theories. An inexperienced White House that has sometimes been surprisingly inept at coping with the 24/7 news media cycle? The poor optics associated with Democrats having had a filibuster-proof majority in theory, but not always in practice? All of the above.
In another post, Silver shows the issues that Dems and the GOP are running on. Less than 25% of GOP candidates are highlighting LGBT issues (I presume negatively). I wonder what pathetic clowns are using that as an issue - they must not be able to say anything about matters at the top of the list. (NYT graphic):
And both Republicans and Democrats avoided the issue of gay rights, where public opinion is shifting. Even if gay marriage were too controversial to be a part of the Democratic agenda in most swing districts, the Democrats might theoretically gain ground by highlighting their support for allowing gay men and lesbians to serve openly in the military, where large majorities of the public back their position. But perhaps hamstrung by Mr. Obama, who has taken a series of half-steps on the issue, few of these Democrats have chosen to do so.
The "Fierce Advocate" who refused to lead because he wants a second term. He must really trust those savants working for him risk tossing control over to the GOP for it.