Will the Democrats retake Congress in November?

It seems like I can’t read the web these days without reading yet another editorial asking that question.

Washington Post:

Intense and widespread opposition to President Bush is likely to be a sharp spur driving voters to the polls in this fall’s midterm elections, according to strategists in both parties, a phenomenon that could give Democrats a turnout advantage over Republicans for the first time in recent years.

Polls have reflected voter discontent with Bush for many months, but as the election nears, operatives are paying special attention to one subset of the numbers. It is the wide disparity between the number of people who are passionate in their dislike of Bush vs. those who support him with equal fervor.


Public approval of the job Congress is doing has dipped to its lowest level of 2006, and is now the worst Gallup has recorded since the closing days of the Democratic majority in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994.

Real Clear Politics:

Will Democrats win control of the House in November? It’s a question lots of people have been asking in Washington and around the country these days. It seems possible, certainly. Democrats only have to make a net gain of 15 seats to win a majority. But it’s also true that, with the single and large exception of 1994, neither party has made a net gain of more than 10 House seats over the last 20 years.

And the above is just from today.

Now, just to be clear: I’d love for the Democrats to re-take the house, for the good of the country and for the good of the world. But, realistically, it seems like a lot of people are talking about something that hasn’t happened yet, is in no way certain, and has historical odds against it. Victory in November lies at the end of a very long road – there’s a lot between here and there, and a lot else that has to happen first before any kind of real victory is possible.

To be sure, the Democrats couldn’t ask for a better hand of cards going into this thing… I’m just suggesting that no one pop any champagne bottles prematurely. Cockiness and a belief that victory is inevitable won’t do anyone any good; what’s needed is to focus on the long hard race ahead.

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