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by Christopher Chantrill
March 14, 2006 at 9:21 am
IT WILL TAKE a gain of 15 seats for the Democrats to take control of the House of Representatives this fall. Can they do it?
Long time elections expert Michael Barone says maybe. It would seem that gaining 15 seats should not be that hard, given that the Republicans gained 52 seats in 1994 to take the House. But this isnt 1994. At least not yet.
Democrats' chances of taking those 15 seats are not very good — if the voting patterns and political contours that have held steady since the 1995-96 budget showdown continue to prevail.
And thats the point. Voting patterns have stayed steady for about the last ten years. The Republicans gains came from three sources, says Barone. First was the Democratic Class of 1974 that had won in fairly Republican districts. Twenty years later, as those incumbents moved on, their seats reverted back to the Republicans. Then Republicans benefited from an improvement in candidate quality, the movement of the conservative South into the Republican camp, a remarkable anti-incumbent feeling, and finally an anti-Clinton feeling among voters who in 1992 thought they were voting for a moderate and instead got tax increases and national health care.
How do those factors work this time around? Not too much. It doesnt seem likely that Republicans are in for a perfect storm like Democrats were in 1994.
In his analysis, Jay Case writes in RealClearPolitics.com that we should not underestimate the difficulty of unseating an incumbent congressman. There are only about 17 Republican open seats and most of them are districts that voted for Bush in 2000 and 2004.
Then he goes through the conventional wisdom that points to a Democratic pickup in November. Democrats could win if they could unify around a set of issues. Republicans are in trouble because they are not united. Right track/wrong track polls indicate trouble for the Republicans, and so on.
All wrong, says Case. The fact is that 95 percent of Republican congressmen are running for reelection. And the open seats are mostly in districts that voted for Bush. That makes it almost impossible to retake the House unless the sentiments of the voters change significantly before November.
So it aint over yet.|
But I saw a man yesterday who knows a fellow who had it from a chappie
that said that Urquhart had been dipping himself a bit recklessly off the deep end.
Dorothy L. Sayers, Strong Poison
Civil Societya complex welter of intermediate institutions, including businesses, voluntary associations, educational institutions, clubs, unions, media, charities, and churchesbuilds, in turn, on the family, the primary instrument by which people are socialized into their culture and given the skills that allow them to live in broader society and through which the values and knowledge of that society are transmitted across the generations.
Francis Fukuyama, Trust
Tear down theory, poetic systems... No more rules, no more models... Genius conjures up
rather than learns... Victor Hugo
César Graña, Bohemian versus Bourgeois
We have met with families in which for weeks together, not an article of sustenance but potatoes had been used; yet for every child the hard-earned sum was provided to send them to school.
E. G. West, Education and the State
When we began first to preach these things, the people appeared as awakened from the sleep of agesthey seemed to see for the first time that they were responsible beings, and that a refusal to use the means appointed was a damning sin.
Finke, Stark, The Churching of America, 1776-1990
When we received Christ, Phil added, all of a sudden we now had a rule book to go by, and when we had problems the preacher was right there to give us the answers.
James M. Ault, Jr., Spirit and Flesh
A writer who says that there are no truths, or that all truth is merely relative, is asking you not to believe him. So dont.
Roger Scruton, Modern Philosophy
As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable...
[1.] protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception until natural death; [2.] recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family... [3.] the protection of the right of parents to educate their children.
Pope Benedict XVI, Speech to European Peoples Party, 2006
At first, we thought [the power of the West] was because you had more powerful guns than we had. Then we thought it was because you had the best political system. Next we focused on your economic system. But in the past twenty years, we have realized that the heart of your culture is your religion: Christianity.
David Aikman, Jesus in Beijing
But the only religions that have survived are those which support property and the family.
Thus the outlook for communism, which is both anti-property and anti-family, (and also anti-religion), is not promising.
F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit
Conservatism is the philosophy of society. Its ethic is fraternity and its characteristic is authority the non-coercive social persuasion which operates in a family or a community. It says we should....
Danny Kruger, On Fraternity
Families helped each other putting up homes and barns. Together, they built churches, schools, and common civic buildings. They collaborated to build roads and bridges. They took pride in being free persons, independent, and self-reliant; but the texture of their lives was cooperative and fraternal.
Michael Novak, The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism
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