Matt Lewis
Jim Pinkerton's "The Simplest Explanation for Why McCain Will Win This November" is compelling.  I agree with his premise that many voters would recoil at the prospect of having Democrats control both congress -- and the presidency. 

Likewise, I think the GOP's prospects of keeping the presidency this year are much greater than their prospects of re-taking the House and Senate.  Theoretically, knowing this would make me more inclined to support McCain.  But though this is a "simple explanation," I'm still concerned about whether or not most voters will grasp the significance of this.  Do voters realize we could potentially have Obama, Reid, and Pelosi running the entire show?  I don't think so, but I hope I'm wrong ...

Pinkerton backs up his assertion that Americans like divided government by citing history.  He's correct; congress and the presidency have been, more often than not, controlled by opposing parties.  But he also notes that there have been brief times when one party has all the marbles.  ... So 2008 could potentially be one of those unfortunate times. 

My concern is that most voters don't intellectually grasp that one-party rule is bad.  Instead, because one-party control is generally bad in practice, voters react by throwing at least some of the bums out. 

Of course, McCain could help voters realize the potential peril we're facing by dispatching surrogates to argue this theory.  GOP Congressional candidates, of course, would not appreciate having McCain tell everyone that they were going to lose, but you can't make everyone happy all the time. 

I have no doubt that after four years of Obama, Reid, and Pelosi, voters would see the light and elect Republicans in 2012.  But the country shouldn't have to go through that -- and besides, we're talking about 2008. 

Will the argument in favor of divided government resonate this year?

Matt Lewis

Matt Lewis is conservative writer and blogger based in Alexandria, VA.

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