Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Making Too Much Of Too Little In Elections

There seems to be developing an idea that Sestak beating Specter means a lot about the White House and voter attitude. I'd like to see that train backed up a bit. I see this Primary result being about asking Democrats to vote for the guy they've been asked to defeat for decades. A guy who recently changed Parties and has Bush/Cheney problems amongst others. Sure, he's an incumbent, but calling him a Democratic incumbent is taking the definition a bit too literally. Also calling Sestak a Progressive might be a bit strong and wrong.

The same kind of theme is being sounded about Kentucky and the Rand Paul election by the Teabaggers. Funny, there's about 3:2 D:R vote ratio in Primary though making too much of that could be wrong since it seems to be an ordinary Primary ratio that results in GOP General wins, anyhow. Teabaggers turned out against McConnell's pick, that isn't too odd an outcome in low turnout mid-term Primary, what that means to GOP in Nov is an open question. What the Teabaggers are is just about as much an open question and particularly what they are to the voters in a General Election.

It appears that Lincoln in AR will have to go through a run off. She is the incumbent but she has also been an odd sort of Democrat for the last year and a half. I'm not an adherent of the idea that all politics is local but I am also not bound to the idea that elections are all about some generalized national sentiment. This could be a big "so what" anyhow, since AR will be tough against the GOP whoever wins - finally. Voters have their own reasons in statewide elections and district elections for what they do. There can easily be an attitude of, "they're dirty rotten SOBs but he's our SOB," that will carry an incumbent and at the same time they might not like how that local SOB has acted lately. I don't know about local, but individual would be my description.

The special election for Murtha's seat might have a lesson, but that lesson would seem to be to run on PA and not on Nancy Pelosi or Pres. Obama. Mark Critz (PA12-D) now, was Murtha's aide and ran on District issues while the GOP tried to make it about DC. That CD went for McCain in '08 so there is something to be said about this result.

I'll say this, Democrats will make up their own minds despite what powers that be might have to say about it. It seems some people would be well advised to pay attention to what Will Rogers had to say about being a Democrat. So far I'm not seeing anything disastrous for Democrats this fall.


Zak Johnson said...

It may just be that voters are looking at individual politicians. My gut tells me I simply couldn't have voted for Specter. Apparently others felt equally queasy. But I do think the dissatisfaction of the left by being more or less ignored by the Obama administration so far will mean endorsements by the party establishment will mean as little for Ds as they seem to mean for Rs this year; except of course for the endorsed candidates being able to raise more money.

What's your take on the gubernatorial primary results in OR?

Chuck Butcher said...

The Gov Primary would seem to express something other than the widely bruited anti-incumbent sentiment. Kitz has been out for awhile but he is scarcely an outsider. This would seem to be a case of experience being desired.