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October 18, 2010

Dick Morris: Rumors of the Democratic Comeback Are Greatly Overstated

Democrats were in big trouble over policy and results. So they blitzed their opponents with negative ads -- but way too early. Desperate to get a toe-hold, they threw the sink at Republicans, gaining 5 or so points in the polls.

But too early.

[I]n most districts, the negatives assumed a more personal and harsher character. Watching them, one felt not only that the Republican should not be elected, but that he should be imprisoned. The vitriolic negatives played fast and loose with the facts.

...

The attacks sent Republicans reeling. Democrats did not pace themselves and opened up with all they had, usually throwing the harshest negatives first. Throughout the country, Republicans slipped back and Democrats managed to reestablish leads. In the Senate races, Angle fell behind in Nevada, Rossi dropped in Washington, O'Donnell lost points in Delaware. And in dozens of House races, the Republicans fell back.

In the past two weeks, these races have stabilized and the Republican has come back. The negatives have worn off. Republicans have answered the charges and shown how ridiculous they are. And voters have reminded themselves that on the key issues of the day -- stimulus, Obamacare, cap-and-trade, and TARP -- they agree with the Republicans and not with the Democrats. These underlying Republican advantages have become more manifest.

As Mark Twain said, "A lie can make it half way around the world before the truth has time to put its boots on." It took all of two or three weeks for the Republicans to put on their boots to pursue the Democratic negatives. But, by late September, they were fully shod and were overcoming the negative attacks.

Now Republicans are opening up good-sized leads again, particularly in House races, and the Democratic attacks are being seen as shrill, inaccurate, and ineffective."

At Hot Air, it's noted that the Democrats claim they actually took it easy in September with television ads and now intend to blitz the Republicans. But the Democrats can't run on their record, and their negative attacks have largely been digested by the public and found to be not all that persuasive.

So what's this money going to be used for?

Well, for GOTV, I guess. So be the wave.

But this strategy seems to have backfired anyway-- because while Democrats were saving up for their October blitz, Republicans were... spending money in September, but also outraising them in September, so that they're ready to play in October too:

A long roster of House Democratic incumbents found themselves outraised by GOP challengers during the third quarter — the latest sign that cash is following Republican momentum just weeks from the midterms.

At least 40 Democrats took in less cash than their opponents — a list that ranges from vulnerable freshmen like Alabama’s Bobby Bright, Mississippi’s Travis Childers, and Nevada’s Dina Titus to more senior members like Nick Rahall of West Virginia and Paul Kanjorski of Pennsylvania.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Republican challenger outraised her by more than 3-to-1, taking in more than $1.1 million over the past three months. John Dennis, the Ron Paul-backed GOP nominee running against Pelosi in her liberal San Francisco-based district, raised roughly five times as much as he collected in the previous quarter, tapping into resentment against the leader of the Democratic majority in the House.

The development comes at a time when GOP outside groups are already far outspending Democratic-aligned organizations. This week, the Karl Rove-linked American Crossroads and a collection of affiliated Republican-friendly organizations announced they would spend more than $50 million on TV ads slamming House Democrats. The National Republican Congressional Committee, meanwhile, has announced that it plans to expand its TV ad campaign to $50 million as it attempts to expand the number of Democratic targets.

Rasmussen expanded its prediction to 55 seats; ABCNews notes that 63 Democrats are in "serious danger."

I don't think anyone believes these predictions, least of all the people making them. I think they're being cautious because to say what you really think would make you sound crazy.

I'm sticking with 72/11. And I don't believe that prediction at all.


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posted by Ace at 02:43 PM

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