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November 01, 2006

Michael Steele Will Win?

So predicts a writer at Real Clear Politics. The endorsements of Steele by prominent Prince George County black Democrats may be enough to win it for him.

The current RealClearPolitics poll average shows him trailing by 5.3 percentage points, and, in the words of University of Maryland political scientist Ron Walters, yesterday's endorsements are "going to go through the black community like a rocket. It's going to be the talk of the county, the state, maybe even the nation."

...

Prince George's County is a huge, majority-black area east of Washington, D.C. With a total population of just under 850,000, it's the second-largest jurisdiction in the state, with some 225,000 more people than the city of Baltimore. As you would expect given its ethnic makeup, it's a Democratic stronghold. In 2002, the ticket of Governor Bob Ehrlich and Steele won statewide by four percentage points (52-48), but lost in Prince George's by fifty-three percentage points (76-23).

So why a high-powered leadership would group from Prince George's break ranks with their party and support Steele? (And they are high-powered. Their leader is a two-term former County Executive, Wayne Curry, arguably the most popular politician in the county. Five others are members of the County Council. Another, Major Riddick, was the top aide to former Governor Parris Glendening. Also on hand were one of the Democrats' top fundraisers, several prominent businessmen and other community leaders.)

Part of it is that Steele is a Prince Georgian. The county leaders know him, like him and respect him. But that alone wouldn't be nearly enough to cause them to break ranks with their party in a critical election.

What it's really all about is that blacks in Maryland have begun to realize that they've been being snookered by the white-dominated Democratic Party all these years. As Riddick put it, "They've been showing us a pie, but we never get a slice."

And that's not the only possible pickup in the Senate. New Jersey remains close, of course. And the National Republican Senate Committee just injected a big $800,000 into the Michigan race, targeting Debbie Stabenow and supporting former sheriff Mike Bouchard.

Money talks. The Republicans are, sadly, scaling back support for Santorum but increasing it for Bouchard -- apparently they think he could win. It would be a tough one, but it's possible.


Reuters/Zogby... Says the Democrats are ahead in 12-15 races in districts currently held by Republicans.

Putting them "in range" to take control.

Also putting them, though the headline doesn't say so, "in range" to not take control.


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posted by Ace at 11:11 AM

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