Erick Erickson is Probably Right

White House photo.


RedState’s Erick Erickson has a fairly convincing post on the similarities between the current media coverage of the Dems’ apparent “rebound” in the midterm polls and a similar Dem “surge” in 1994. As we know, that 1994 Dem recovery proved to be illusory, and the GOP won a convincing victory. Here’s the kicker from Erickson’s post:

On October 9, 1994, a month out from the November 8, 1994 election, the Washington Post’s Kevin Merida wrote, “One matchup pits William Frist (R), a wealthy heart-lung transplant surgeon from Nashville, against Sen. Jim Sasser (D), an 18-year veteran who chairs the Budget Committee and is making a strong bid to be the next Senate majority leader. Though some polls have showed the race tightening, several independent analysts doubt that Frist has enough to knock Sasser out. But he is trying.”

Bill Frist won the race 56% to 42%

At this point, it’s sort of hard to count House races, but polling guru Nate Silver’s contention that the GOP control is significantly more likely than not seems about right. Senate races are a bit easier. It’s hard to see how even the most optimistic Dem can project losing fewer than four Senate seats—North Dakota, Arkansas, Indiana, and Pennsylvania appear to be done deals. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.) has made big comebacks before, but right now, he looks cooked too. Michael Bennet in Colorado doesn’t look much better. If you assume the GOP will win only those six races, you’re still betting that they’ll lose two contests—Nevada and Illinois—that Silver gives them a better-than-even shot of winning. And we haven’t even talked about Washington or California or Connecticut or West Virginia yet. 

It helps the media to play up the appearance of a Dem resurgence—a closer contest keeps people interested. Don’t believe the hype. Barack Obama’s party is still in serious trouble.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.