Sabato’s Crystal Ball: House Special Elections Report
Sorry, I missed this one when it went up on March 26th.
href=”http://www.centerforpolitics.org/crystalball/article.php?id=ITW2009032601″>Isaac Wood on House Special Report: Previewing the Three Special Elections on Tap
If the November 2008 election was the equivalent of a Democratic tidal wave crashing on the United States, the special elections held earlier that year should have been the early warning system. Before any ballots were cast on November 4, Democrats had already captured three previously-Republican seats in 2008. These three seats (IL-14, LA-6, and MS-1) had been considered relatively safe Republican seats, with George W. Bush winning 55 percent, 59 percent, and 62 percent of the vote in each district respectively in 2004. While these special elections were not the first signs of a Democratic wave approaching, they were among the most unmistakable.
Flash forward to 2009. Three more districts are already slated for special elections, but this time Democrats are defending all three seats. If the Republicans are looking for a quick rebound, this is where they should look. The GOP has so far been playing the part of the loyal opposition in Congress, hoping that economic woes and anti-stimulus sentiment would tarnish the Democratic brand and revive their own electoral hopes. Just four months removed from their catastrophic showing in 2008, Republican partisans are hungry for any good news.