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Liberals: The Necessary Delusion Conservatism is More Than Growth and Opportunity

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Democrats Thinking Inside the Bubble

by Christopher Chantrill
January 22, 2013 at 12:00 am

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THE CONVENTIONAL wisdom for this week is that President Obama will divide the Republicans and Nancy Pelosi will take back the House in 2014. In fact, according to Ron Brownstein in “Expect Obama to be more aggressive in his second term” and “How the Democrats are taking over California,” the new Democratic “coalition of the ascendant”--black, brown, young and educated female--is about to take over the nation, for Democrats don’t really need “older and blue collar whites” any more for a presidential majority. Brownstein writes:

Ruy Teixeira, co-author of the seminal 2002 book “The Emerging Democratic Majority,” says the party’s coalition has evolved over time “in such a way that not only makes the [presidential] majority more solid but shifts the weight toward groups that are less interested in a temporizing, triangulating politics.” Compared to even the 1990s, he notes, Democrats “don’t have—and don’t need—as many of those voters at the conservative end of their coalition... as they once did.

Here is what I don’t understand. If the Dems don’t need the old white guys and gals why are they standing in the entitlement door crying Medicare today, Medicare tomorrow, Medicare forever? And why do they use an old white blue-collar steel-worker to show up Mitt Romney as an unfeeling plutocrat?

Then there is California. It’s wonderful for liberals like Brown and Brownstein that they now have the two-thirds majority in both houses of the state legislature and so can increase taxes on the old and white to benefit the young and brown. But where is the politician demanding that the old white government retirees give up the pensions that are bankrupting cities all over the state? And where is the Democrat telling the trustafarian environmentalists to take their hands off California’s energy economy so minority kids can get a job?

Why do Democrats still insist on running the entitlement engine flat out, the one that benefits old white voters, when they don’t need them for a presidential majority?

Let’s get back to the 2014 midterm issue and Nancy Pelosi’s plan to take the House. Fortunately, we have usmidtermelections.com to help with that. You can look at House midterms here, and all House elections since 1900 here. Right now, the House of Representatives has 234 Republicans and 201 Democrats. So it would take a swing of 17 for Nancy and the Democrats to take back the House.

Let’s check and see how many times the president’s party has gained more than 17 seats in a midterm election. If you limit your search to the 20th century, there is a simple answer. None. The only election that comes close is the 1934 midterm when Republicans lost 14 seats in the second year of President Roosevelt’s first term.

OK. Let’s lower the bar. Were there any midterms, apart from 1934, in which the president’s party gained seats at all? Yes, there were. In 2002 the GOP gained 8 seats in Bush’s first term when Bush was the 9/11 president, and in 1998 the Democrats gained 5 seats in Clinton’s impeachment year. Then it’s back to FDR in 1934. Then you have to go back all the way to 1902, but that doesn’t count. Go ahead, look it up and find out why.

It’s Nancy Pelosi’s job to announce that she’ll take back the House and Obama’s job to help her. Good luck, Nance and Barry. But is much more likely that by the fall of 2014 the Republicans, bless their hearts, will have finally found the way to unite all the anti-Obama voters in America into one grim evil right-wing militia march to the polls. It is much more likely that Republicans will be the ones picking up 15-20 House seats when the new Congress is seated in January 2015.

Don’t forget that there is also the dangerous possibility that those Obama-bashing Republicans will persuade a few, just a few of those black, brown, young and female in the ascendant that Democrats are selling them the Brooklyn Bridge. Yes, it’s wonderful to have free contraception and gay marriage. But what is that when measured against the shorter hours you are working because of Obamacare? Who cares about immigration when you are paying 15 to 20 percent of wages in payroll taxes for entitlements that you will be lucky to collect? Who cares about the permanent Bush tax rates when student loan payments function like an income tax?

Then there is unemployment, that hits the young hardest. And the demolition of the family in low-income America. And the trillion-dollar deficits.

It’s clear that Democrats are busily convincing each that the political barometer is set fair for the next few years. But all we know for sure is that we are at the half-way point in the Obama era.

Christopher Chantrill blogs at www.roadtothemiddleclass.com.

Buy his Road to the Middle Class.

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