This piece from today's New York Daily News on the midterm elections has an unusually high quotient of great quotes, showcasing Republican anxieties and bluster in roughly equal measure. A sampling.
- "'The security issue trumps everything,' a senior Bush official said last week. 'That's why even though they're really mad at us, in the end they're going to give us another two years.'"
- "'We'll lose the House,' one of the party's most prominent officials flatly predicted, 'and the President will be dead in the water for two years.'"
- "This cake is baked," predicted Charlie Cook, editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report newsletter. "You just don't have a wave of this magnitude and not see 15 seats turn over."
- Americans have "decided the personal characteristics that kept him afloat for a long time aren't that appealing anymore," an influential Bushie told the Daily News. "They also think Iraq is a failure."
- "We enjoy a severalfold strategic advantage on the ground," said a confident top Bush strategist. "A well-executed mediocre plan will beat a poorly executed brilliant plan every day."
Now, admittedly, what I've called bluster might be quiet confidence that Democrats will find a way to squander their advantage. But that just goes to show that where the House is concerned it's the Democrats' election to lose.