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Saturday, September 23, 2006

Trouble Brewing?

It appears the Democrats have national level problems brewing for the mid-term elections , along with their well documented ethical issues in the midwest.

A number of things are brewing that aren't helpful for them, or their strategy in November. The biggest is consumer confidence in the economy. While there is still nearly a 2-1 margin for (36-17%) who think the economy is getting worse, that's a big change from a couple of months ago when it was 4-1 (46-12). The real problem with the number is that nearly all of the folks on the 36% side of the equation are already "likely voters" for the Democratic party. That means more folks from the "undecided" group have slipped into the "economy is okay mode"; narrowing the dems chances of capturing them.

Gas prices falling isn't helping them, either. The number of folks who saw that as the major issue for the midterms fell by 50% in the last 5 months. Since it looks like prices may be below $2 per gallon by election day, it puts a damper on the fear pimps who were just a few weeks ago telling us $3.00 was here to stay and $5 by next summer wasn't out of the question.

The third issue, Iraq, the Democrats fall back, fail-safe key to the election isn't moving in their favor either. The President's message that Iraq and national security are one in the same seems to be getting through. And, again to the Democrats chagrine, the voters who do see Iraq as the number one election issue are, by a 5-1 margin registered democrats; again one of their major issues getting few new voters to their side of the aisle.

The final thing is George Bush's approval rating. It's climbed back into the mid 40% range, making him less of a liability to GOP candidates out there, and hurting the Democrats who only want to equate all Republicans to Bush.

My guess (with no numbers to back it up) is that Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad did more to help Bush with their UN speeches this week than he's done for himself in the last couple of months. It wouldn't surprise me to see any democrat who's spoken nicely of either of the men, and who's up for re-election to be tied to them in TV and radio ads shortly.

E.J. Dionne, a guy I love to hate has a good roundup of other problems for the left in today's Washington Post.

Technorati Tags: , 2006, , , ,


Blogger Etzel Pangloss said...

It could get even worse.

I've just read via Le Monde and l'Est Republicaine that a DGSE memo claims that OBL has died of typhoid.

11:00 AM  
Blogger ablur said...

I'll wait for proof on OBL. I read that too and am still skeptical.

The Dems were told years ago they can't run on anger and expect to win. They have failed to provide any direction. The emotional out cry can only carry for so long. Sooner or later they will have to offer some substance.

12:45 PM  
Blogger shoprat said...

I'm not going to get too confident yet, but it is looking a lot more hopeful than it was a couple of months ago. Still a lot of minds to change.

5:36 PM  
Blogger Little Miss Chatterbox said...

Excellent post and I love it when the good news just keeps pouring in. Gas is $1.99 here!!

12:50 AM  
Blogger Praguetwin said...

Isn't it ironic that people are less pessimistic about the economy when the data is really starting show how bad it is?

Consumer confidence is about the only good piece of data I've seen come out of the states in several weeks.

Good point about the gas prices: that is what people really care about.

1:34 AM  
Blogger The Conservative UAW Guy said...

I hope the Republicans have learned something from all of this, regardless of the outcome.

Stick with conservative values (that they WON on), and you'll do ok. Be wishy washy and veer towards the left, and you end up where they are now.

4:50 AM  
Blogger Lone Pony said...

Good point on Chavez and Ahmadinejad. At first I was pissed about their wacky comments, then I realized that it gave the American people some common enemies to focus on for a little while.

5:21 AM  
Blogger Crazy Politico said...

PT, which data is showing how "bad" the economy is, 4.7% unemployment, 4% productivity growth, 2% inflation, or the record amount of money collected on quarterly tax payments, despite cuts to capital gains, the upper brackets, and business taxes, which are where they come from? Housing, which the media is making to be "doom and gloom" will have the 3rd highest year on record for sales, and mortgage rates dropped a quarter point last week.
Yup, sounds like a horrible economy to me.

5:40 AM  
Blogger Praguetwin said...

The slowdown is on the way. Housing numbers have been abysmal for the last 3 months (consistently posting lower than the already low expectations) and although today's numbers weren't as bad as predicted, the slowing trend is well in tact. 37% more houses on the market than a year ago, for example.

The most distressing bit of data of late was the Philly Fed Survey which points to a major slowdown. (It posted a -.4% after analysts had predicted a +14%). I'll wait for the ISM data a week from now to be sure.

You point out a record haul in gov. income but fail to point out that the public debt is still growing at an annual pace of about $800 billion. We are at about 8.5 trillion and still running deficits in excess of 6% of GDP.

The bull run for the stock market has not translated in higher wages for the middle class, but you can bet when the slowdown comes (and it has just started) the middle class will feel the full brunt of the blow.

My point was just that a few months ago when the numbers looked good, people were pessimisitic about the economy, and now when the numbers clearly show a slowdown underway, people are more optimistic.

Ironic isn't it?

10:37 AM  

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