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Monday, November 06, 2006
I’m not one for much political prognostication, but I thought I’d give it a shot in 2006. While the media believes (or hopes) that there will be a massive Democratic onslaught, I’m inclined to believe the following:
- The economy is generally good and that affects most people.
- The war in Iraq is an inflammatory issue, but most people aren’t as riled up about it as the Democrats would hope.
- Illegal immigration is an inflammatory issue, but Republicans fear Speaker Pelosi far more than they fear Julio and his six offspring crossing the Rio Grande.
- “Politics is local,” and a great many folks like their representatives while abhorring everyone else’s.
- In Connecticut, the independent candidacy of Joe Lieberman will help Republicans by bringing out more Republican voters who dislike the idea of Ned Lamont winning.
- There will be SOME exceptions to rule #4.
So where does this leave my predictions? Santorum and DeWine are sure losers. Cardin probably wins, and I believe that Corker and Allen will win too. Chafee is a likely loser (which won’t hurt my feelings in the least). Missouri, New Jersey and Montana are too close to call. Nonetheless, I believe the Republicans will hold onto the Senate.
As for the House, I don’t see how the Republicans hold onto it, but I don’t believe they will lose it by much. In fact, I don’t believe the Democrats will own a governing majority in the sense that there will be too many conservative Democrats to allow much of a liberal agenda to proceed. I’m predicting a 15-18 seat pickup for the Democrats, including former Vol QB Heath Shuler in western Carolina. However, I don’t believe that the Dems will pick up the CT seats (Shays, Johnson and Simmons). I’m predicting that all three seats stay with the GOP. I’m also predicting a Texas split with Lampson winning Delay’s old seat, and Henry Bonilla retaining his.
And one more pick – the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative passes, and by a wider than expected margin.
It all depends on turnout, and, despite the unconditional hatred for President Bush, I’m not sure that’s going to be enough in many places to turn the tables toward the Democrats.
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