Election dissection: Be afraid, be very afraid
There are two groups of people that have reason to be scared over Tuesday's election results: moderate Democrats and Republican leadership.
Why any Democrat should be concerned is obvious. They're the current majority party and they're in control of Congress and the White House. Off year elections are normally bad for the party in the White House, but Tuesday's election results point to something big next year.
In Virginia, a state Obama carried by five percent, the Republican candidate for Governor wins by eighteen percent - a twenty-three point swing.
In deep blue New Jersey, a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans by two to one; where the Democrat incumbent outspent the Republican by three to one; where Obama himself won by fifteen points and made multiple campaign stops, the Republican wins by four points - a nineteen point swing.
And in moderate Maine, voters supported a referendum to overturn a recently passed gay marriage law, the thirty-first state in a row to affirm its support for traditional marriage.
It's enough to give Democrats night sweats from now until next November.
But why should the Republican leadership be concerned? Because many of them have been (or continue to be) completely tone deaf to the sentiments of the party's base. Many of them either "don't get it", or would rather minimize what's driving this train.
It's been said that, given a choice between a Democrat and a fake Democrat, people will usually opt for the Democrat.
A false choice is no choice at all. A lesson taught with enough clarity in New York's 23rd congressional district election that even the national GOP leadership should understand.
A false choice is exactly what RINO Republican Scozzafava proved herself to be when, after withdrawing, she endorsed the Democrat. In the process she did perform an invaluable service for conservatives by proving what they have said about such Republicans for years.
The race also serves as a graphic demonstration of just how small the Republican coalition is without those crazy conservatives that elite Republicans spend so much time trying to denigrate and minimize.
On the day of her withdrawal, the latest poll put Scozzafava in 3rd place with barely twenty percent of the vote.
Conservative party candidate Doug Hoffman ran as a principled Reagan conservative...and was promptly rejected by the insiders in the NY GOP and the national Republicans n Washington in favor of a pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, pro-government, pro-bailout, tax and spend RINO. And they wasted over a million dollars in Republican donor's contributions in the process.
So much for those guys being experts on how to win a campaign, or being reliable when it comes to using their positions within the party to advance the conservative cause.
Grassroots Republicans have taken notice. According to the latest Rasmussen poll, 73% of Republicans nationwide think that the congressional GOP has lost touch with their base. In other words they've been paying attention.
What makes the leadership's support for such "Republican" candidates even more insidious is, when they do manage to win, they usually end up cooperating with the Pelosi's of the world and giving the Democrats the fig leaf of bi-partisanship for their big government agenda...thus making the GOP the co-conspirator of this agenda in the minds of voters and making it more difficult for other Republicans to credibly campaign against it.
That's why Democrats are so concerned with finding a few Republicans to hop on board with bailouts and Obamacare, and spend so much of their time accusing the GOP of being the "party of no" when they currently have the votes to enact their agenda all by their lonesome.
They don't want the blame all to themselves. Our strategy should always be to let them have it.
The fact is that thanks to Obama voters are growing more conservative but, thanks to past GOP leadership, they've yet to grow more Republican. This comes down to principles...or more precisely a lack thereof.
The voters have spoken. The Democrats probably won't listen. But the Republican leadership should.
Cross-posted at DrewMcKissick.com