Friday, October 15, 2010

Cold Sweat

Elections are coming up! Dja hear about it?

I have a standing prediction that Democrats will lose seats but not control of the house or senate. Almost everybody disagrees with me about congress. Especially Nate Silver, my statistical idol, who gives the odds that Democrats keep the house at a paltry 28%. I'm going to stand by my prediction because the election is still weeks away, the gaps are closing, and if I'm wrong, so what? A handful of guys in the Netherlands lose their faith in my ability to predict races.

Now let's assume Nate is right (he usually is) and we get a Republican Congress and a Democrat Senate. What changes?  More than it will appear. Republicans will have a much more effective platform to obstruct any kind of government, which is their obvious strategy. The less Obama accomplishes, the better 2012 looks for ... Palin? Angle? Scott Brown? Generic Republican for President! But even with no majorities, it seems like Republicans have done a splendid job of obstructing everything anyway.

But in fact Democrats got a handful of historical things done - health care reform (watered down), credit card regulation (watered down) got the troops out of Iraq (not all of them, and Obama just sent them to Afghanistan) and of course the stimulus (could have been better, watered down). So the next two years, expect everything to be shot down.

Republicans are promising, and will deliver, a government which achieves much less while remaining as expensive. It's still better than if they ran all branches - last time that happened they neutered AND expanded government. So maybe the next two years are good for us.

Plus, assuming the 'baggers make it into office, that oughtta sour voters on the movement in a big way. Either they'll do a bunch of crazy crap and alienate the general population, or they'll be reasonable like Scott Brown and lose the base. No matter how they govern, someone will be furious at them.

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