Bernie Sanders is Independent, but I’m assuming that he would vote with the Dems to organize the Senate should it be 50-49-1 for a split.
Let’s hope the Democrats can come up with a better reason to vote for them then “we can’t be any worse than the other guy.” Specifically, what are their plans once they are in office and how will it improve our lives?
He would certainly vote with the Dems, but you said the Dems might “pick up” a seat in VT. Since the current occupant of the VT senate seat Sanders is running for also votes with the Dems (this is the senator Jeffords who made a splash by effectively swithching parties during Bush’s first term), then even if Sanders wins, it wouldn’t be a “pickup”.
And if there was a 50-49-1 split the Repubs would still control the senate via Cheney’s vote, regardless of how Bernie Sanders voted.
I hope so too. But that being said, voting against something is just as important as voting for it. It’s not “we can’t be any worse than the other guy.” It’s “we can’t possibly be *as bad * as the other guy, even if we do give away a few dollars of your precious money to people who are worse off than you are.” The current administration and controlling congress have committed acts whose legacies will live on for decades. And those legacies are not good ones. Don’t you think it’s inherently valuable to render the continuation of that pattern much less possible?
So even if 50 Democrats and Sanders agree on the same majority leader and president pro term the Republicans are still in control? Isn’t Sanders considered a member of the Demorcratic causus in the House? If so why wouldn’t he be in the Senate?
No, if it’s 50 Dems + Sanders, the Dems are in control (when they can vote as a party bloc). If it’s 49 Dems + Sanders, the GOP is in control. Since it’s (functionally) 50 Dems vs 51 GOP. Although the Dems would have an unstoppable fillabuster option in that case. I don’t know how things like “minority/majority” leader and committees would work in such a situation.
I expect to see only modest gains for the democrats in this election. I highly doubt they’ll take either house.
Neither chamber will change hands. The Democrats will gain maybe three seats in the house and two in the Senate.
If the Dems aren’t blown away by more diversionary tactics, it should be a mild gain. So far the diversions are working very well, thankyouverymuch.
One thing that I think will help save the House for the Pubs is troop draw-downs form Iraq. I fully expect Bush to start bringing some troops home this summer, and by the Nov. election we may have just under 100k troops over there. This is just about the only way most American can gauge progress in the Iraq war, so it will be seen as a positive sign.
Additionally, I expect gas prices to do their normal thing and edge back down as summer comes to a close.
Ugh. I don’t see much more dishonesty from the white house than any other presidents that I’m old enough to remember (Clinton, Bush 41), so that’s not really a factor. I also think that the incompetence factor is way overplayed. But it doesn’t matter; I’m not basing any vote this November on Bush’s performance. I plan on studying the candidates themselves very carefully.
Spending is my major nitpick with the Republicans. With all that the party preaches, we should be at an almost unprecedented low level of government and government spending. It is the opposite of that. Problem is, that’s also my problem with the Dems, and in addition to that, I have this fear of them completely pulling troops out of Iraq. I’m also pretty turned off by the recent hysteria over global warming and gas prices (I know, Repubs have been piling onto the latter, but it’s still Democrats that tell me I’m being “gouged”, which I take as an insult to my intelligence).
When I said that I would probably vote Republican, I meant it, but that’s no guarantee. However, if I don’t vote Republican, I’ll vote for some independent. I don’t think that I can vote for a Democrat.
Well, maybe. I though of that when I made my post. But looking at poll numbers now compared to poll numbers historically (I’m specifically thinking of '94), it seems that the Republicans are destined to take some losses this year.
Not if he’s still rattling his saber over the threat from Iran - he either has to drop that nonsense, or stage some kind of operation into it from Iraq rather than draw down troops, or get hammered about bullshitting and fearmongering.
Not if the summer vacation driving season is slack, as the current prices would dictate. The end of summer is the time for home heating oil production to get into full swing, so at least in the Northeast we rarely see much relief then.
silentstorm, count me among the mystified as to why anyone would choose to vote for what even they consider the worse of two evils.
SilentStorn: One thing you might want to consider is the value of gridlock. When the president and Congress are of different parties, they have more trouble getting stuff done. If you’re like me, and think government often does more harm than good, it’s a plus to have one more obstacle in their path. I’ve seen both parties get drunk on power when they control everything, and the current crop of Republicans are the worst in that respect. My preferred blend is usually a Republican in the WH, and Democrats controling at least one House in Congress.
But it’s hard to argue with your approach-- looking at each candidate individually. Don’t be confused into thinking that all Dems are tax and spend types, though. There are a lot of fiscally responsible Dems out there these days.
I don’t see that playing into the decision at all. If anything, it’ll be a purely political move by Bush to help retain the House. He doesn’t care so much about his own approval rating, but if the Dems take over the House, they’ll subpoena his ass faster than you can say Nancy Pelosi, House Majority Leader.
If the summer driving season is slack, then prices will come down even sooner.
Don’t get me wrong, though. I’m not saying this is the way things are definitely going to play out, only what I think is the most likely scenario. If the Iraqi government fails to coalece and the insurgency gains in strength, then we may not see troop draw downs. And maybe we’ll have another devastating hurricane in Sept or Oct this year that will send gas prices soaring. A lot of things could happen between now and Nov.
I’ll bet it’ll be huge!
Gridlock is valuable when gov’t is already small because that’s the way it stays when legislation is hard to pass. I’m unconvinced that a mix would bring the size of government down, but it might stop it from getting bigger like it is now. Also, in order for your theory to hold true, Bush has to use his veto pen for something.
When was the last time that government was small?
You’re right about Bush and the veto, but I think we might have some a veto here and there if the Dems had been running Congress.
I’ll be (pleasantly) surprised if the Republicans loose a majority in either the House or Senate in 2006. While there may be enough seats actually in play for the Dems to win a narrow majority, the Dems would pretty much have to do everything right to get it. I’m not seeing this as too realistic at this point.
Also, I’m not sure how much anger over the administration will translate into local politics and anger at the Republicans in the various states. Certainly some are more vulnerable than others…but then, that goes for some Democrats as well.
My prediction is that the Dems narrow the gap a bit by picking up a few seats. Best case is that they actually manage a thin majority in the house, and perhaps narrow the gap in the senate.
Really, all this anger, if its real, will more likely translate into something during the next PRESIDENTIAL election. Thats really where the Dems should be focusing on making a big impact. My prediction THERE is…I’m going to wait and see if the Dems try pushing the same ole same ole, or if they actually attempt to change their strategy to one that may actually win.
Apparently not. See this: link
Let’s see. Deliberately whipping up a furor among people who had little or no way of knowing better based on non-existent ties between Al Qaida and Iraq, and highly suspect (to put it mildly) evidence of WMDs? Refusing to accept the military’s own estimate on what resources it would take to do the job well? “There’s no way we could have predicted the levees would break?” “Heckuva job, Brownie?”
You want less government, but the biggest threat to your privacy and rights around is The so-called Patriot Act, closely followed by ignoring the FISA statutes. Oh, not to mention the dictating of “science” based on ideology. Or does it only count as less government when we’re talking about taxes?
Never mind. If you don’t consider there to be any difference between the honesty and competence of this administration and previous ones (including Republican admins whose policies I have personally despised and you probably loved, such as Reagan’s or Nixon’s), nothing can penetrate your belief system and you *certainly * should vote for the Replublican congressional candidates (and support the current administration should it declare that an emergency condition exists in Nov 2008 and suspect elections, which, ftr, I don’t consider a likelihood).
Really willing to go out on a limb there, aren’t you?
The winning strategy in the US is to do exactly what the really rich people want. It just wouldn’t be the same if there were things money couldn’t buy there. That’s why the Dems will always be behind the 8-ball.