Convention holds that the party in power loses in off years. Democrats lost in 2010 as a check against Obama, Republicans lost in 2018 as a check on Trump. The only exception in recent history is 2002, where Bush’s post-9/11 popularity defied convention.
So mere history indicates Democrats are due for a loss on Tuesday. Given the undefendable disaster of the Biden administration, they should be on course for a slaughter, with Joe Rogan insisting the red wave would resemble the blood pouring out of the elevators on The Shining.
Alas, it probably won’t be that good.
Republicans taking the House seems like a foregone conclusion, with Real Clear Politics giving the GOP a 228 to 174 advantage in the leans and likely categories, and Republicans enjoying a +3 generic ballot edge. The safe money is that Nancy Pelosi next year will not be Speaker.
The Senate is a little trickier, where Republicans need 51 seats for a majority and Democrats only need 50, as the vice president breaks the tie in favor of her party. Republicans could sweep Georgia, New Hampshire, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and — good heavens — Washington state, thereby going into 2023 with a 55 to 45 advantage. But it seems unlikely that all these can be pulled off. (This columnist’s prediction is a 52 to 48 Senate.)
Should Republicans win the Senate, expect Democrats to go back to saying how unfair and (yawn) racist it is that small states have so much power. Spoiler, the Senate was designed exactly to give smaller states more power.
Governors’ races, while not as sexy as the tipping point of the Senate, seem like the bigger deal no one’s talking about. Republicans seem on track to capture open mansions in Arizona and Oregon.
Nevada is a solid toss up, but this might be one where people avoid straight-party tickets and vote for the Dem for senator and the Repub for governor.
The crown jewel in a Tuesday victory — which, of course, will not be settled Tuesday — would be New York. Lee Zeldin has been climbing consistently since August against the incumbent governor, Kathy Hochul, and a win here is necessary to save the Empire State from total chaos.
The question is whether the mass exodus of New Yorkers is a sign that the ship needs to change course, or if all the people who left would have been Zeldin supporters.
The biggest advantage that Republicans have going into the cycle is that white suburban women — the ultimate swing vote — have swung back the right way. One supposes this might have something to do with a crashing economy and an endless parade of maniacs in the public school system. They support Republicans by 15 points now.
That’s nice, but the number that keeps troubling this writer is 38.
Earlier this year, a Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey found that, when asked if Russia would have invaded Ukraine were Trump still president, 62% of registered voters said no. That would be good news if that were how everyone were going to vote, but it isn’t, and the flipside is that 38% of the country is incapable of reason.
Trump kept the world safe and stable; Ukrainian flags on social media do not.
In the Biden administration’s first two years, they have annihilated $9 trillion from the stock market, driven an 8.3% inflation rate, spiked our energy costs up 33%, surrendered to the Taliban, and opened the floodgates to a crime wave we haven’t seen since the 1970s. Murder rates are up 44% since 2019!
And for huge chunks of the country, this is not enough to get them to vote the right way.
We used to have an electoral system where, as economist Jude Wanniski articulated, the people need a chicken and the two parties have a duck or a parrot to offer respectively. Now we have a system where one side still insists its duck can be the chicken, and the other side wants to burn the henhouse down.
The Democrat disaster of the last two years is not an accident, it’s by design.
So, the swing voters still clinging onto sanity will add their electoral drops to the wave, but there probably aren’t enough to make a tsunami. On foreign policy, 38% can’t see reason, so getting to 515 in every race is probably beyond hope.
Too many people are just as crazy as Jack Nicholson in The Shining.
Jared Whitley is a longtime politico who has worked in the U.S. Congress, White House and defense industry. He is an award-winning writer, having won best blogger in the state from the Utah Society of Professional Journalists (2018) and best columnist from Best of the West (2016). He earned his MBA from Hult International Business School in Dubai. Read Jared Whitley's reports — More Here.
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