Is Michael Barone sunnier about Republican prospects for the House than most others? I like it. I like it a lot. His "THE MAN" quotient being even higher than Scott Elliott's and Jay Cost's, you know I'm gonna have to link this up:
My predictions would produce an almost evenly divided House: 219 Democrats, a net gain of 16, and 216 Republicans. Such a result would raise the question of whether Mississippi Democrat Gene Taylor, who declined to vote for Nancy Pelosi for speaker in this Congress, would do so again, and whether another Democrat might do so—which could produce a Republican majority for speaker.
My predictions also suggest, correctly, that I do not see this, at least yet, as a "wave" election. In a "wave" election, the winning party—Democrats in 1974, Republicans in 1994—win about half the districts they seriously contest, while the losing party wins about 10 percent of those they seriously contest (since the Republicans seem to be seriously contesting only five seats, this would give them at best one offsetting gain). If you count all these 45 Republican seats as seriously contested, this would mean that Democrats would gain only 36 percent of them. A "wave" result, which some are forecasting, would give Democrats a net gain of 22 or 23 seats, enough for a 225-210 or 226-209 majority.
One reason I do not see this election as a "wave" is that I think Republicans have a superior turnout program.
Read the whole thing. If a wave crashes and Michael Barone is not on the beach, did it really happen? I think not.
The Bouchard campaign in Michigan sends over what could be a little bit of momentum this morning.
Bouchard remains down by about 8 or 9, according to the Real Clear Politics average, but he's been 13-17 down in the past. A statewide poll found him down only 48-42 this week, and Bush is headed to Michigan on Thursday to campaign and raise money, so the head honchos clearly think he has a shot. I don't know what to think of this Stabenow move, but it certainly seems like an odd issue to hit two weeks out of an election.
You can give to Bouchard at Rightroots. I'm obviously a big fan. This guy embodies the reasons that Republicans should get to the polls in November. We're cranky with incumbents, yes, but we shouldn't take it out on a good conservative like Bouchard who'd really have a chance to make a difference for the people of Michigan. The fact that he understands the value of tax cuts bodes much better for the slumping economy of Michigan than Stabenow's continued presence in the Capitol does.
They say Michigan "closes late," and this YouTube from the Bouchard campaign at the World Series points in that direction.
"Do you know who this is?"
RedState outlines the Michigan GOTV efforts, which will also help the DeVos for Governor campaign:
Hired and deployed a field staff of more than 60 people to work directly with local party groups and grassroots activists in more places across Michigan
Made more than 2,000,000 volunteer phone calls - more than any other state in the country!
Added 1,843,456 new pieces of invaluable hard-ID data about individual voters to the voter file, making the file an even better tool for local parties and candidates - far more than was added during the entire 2004 election-cycle
Sent absentee voter applications to more than 2 million likely Republican voters
John Hawkins has Senate predictions:
It looks as if Lincoln Chafee, Rick Santorum, and Mike DeWine are toast. Conrad Burns is still behind, but appears to have some momentum and if enough undecided voters break his way, which is possible in a conservative state like Montana, he has a shot to beat Jon Tester.
Although Jim Talent and Bob Corker still appear to be in toss-up races, Corker and Talent both seem to have some momentum and Talent has a huge cash advantage. Also, George Allen appears to have taken Jim Webb's best shots and kept on coming. He's not completely out of the woods yet, but the race is definitely leaning his way.
Also, Michael Steele, Mike Bouchard, and Tom Kean are within striking distance in their races and Steele actually has a cash advantage. Although the odds could fairly be said to be against all three of them right now, all three of them still look like they have a shot to pull off a victory on election day.
So, this makes an estimate for the Senate races a little harder. What's the super optimistic, best case scenario? The GOP probably loses 1 seat overall as Burns, Talent, Corker win along with 2 out of 3 from Steele, Bouchard, and Kean. In the worst case scenario? The Democrats win 6. The likely scenario? At the moment, I'd still have to say the GOP probably loses 4 seats.
We shall see, Hawkins.