Thursday, October 07, 2004

Dem Sweep?

I'm not predicting this, but there is a non-trivial possibility that the Dems might just get control of all three branches. Doing this would be on the order of pulling an inside straight, but it could happen. The presidential race has clearly tightened and at this point a Kerry victory is a 50-50 proposition.

Also, the Dems are looking decent in the Senate races. Currently, there are 51 Republicans, 48 Democrats, and 1 Independent (Jeffords) who votes with the Democrats. At this point, the Democrats are likely to pick up as seat in lllinois and lose one in Georgia. The Democrats are defending 5 close seats: Florida, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and South Dakota. The Republicans are defending 3 seats in Alaska, Colorado, Oklahoma. Of these 8 seats, the Democrats need to win 6 to take control since 50 seats, along with a Kerry victory would allow Edwards to cast the deciding vote. Right now they are leading (albeit narrowly) in 5: Alaska, Colorado, North Carolina, Oklahoma, and South Dakota. In the other 3, they are narrowly trailing. Again, it's not a given they will win enough seats to get back the Senate, but it could happen. Also, if Kerry wins the presidential race, it may help tip a few Senate races to the Democrats.

Finally, the House. Predicting House races is a mug's game given how few competitive races there are and the fact that they often turn on local and not national issues. Still, Rasmussen's tracking poll of the generic House vote currently has the Democrats opening up a respectable 6 point lead. To get a majority, they need to pick up 11 seats. That's tough but potentially doable if they catch some lucky breaks.

I should also add that these aren't independent probabilities. If Kerry wins the White House, it increases the chances that the Dems win the Senate. If Kerry wins the White House and the Dems get back the Senate, then that increases the odds that the Dems pick up the House.

Overall, I'd say that it's about a 10 or 20-1 shot that the Dems get control of all 3 branches, but I've won bets on longer odds.

If Bush wins however, it's pretty likely that the Republicans keep control of all three branches, though I could construct a plausible scenario where Bush wins and the Democrats still take back the Senate.


Anonymous said...

uh...that's TWO branches.


Philip Klinkner said...

I should have said 3 elected branches, the branch of a branch still being a branch.

StevenTeles said...

If the Democrats win both the presidency and the Senate, they'll be able to make at least a couple, if not more, appointments to the Supreme Court. So I'd say to Herr Klinkner--apologize for nothing!

Palooka said...

You should really refrain from posting your wetdreams about the election ;)

About the Supreme Court. Yes, if Kerry wins and they retake the Senate they're in a good position for a couple more Ruth Bader Ginsburgs, BUT the Dems have opened up the Filliubuster can of worms. What's sauce for the goose...

carla said...

The Democrats have opened the filibuster can of worms?

Seriously you get your GOP Kool-aid by the case or the keg?

The Democrats have voted to confirm literally hundreds of judicial appointments that Bush has made. They've filibustered 4, tops. The Republicans have taken whining on this topic to a new level.

Devo said...

The odds of hitting that inside straight on the river are about 12-1, so that's a solid analogy.

Palooka said...


Maybe you can bring something other to the table besides the tired, debunked Dem talking points.

The nominees which were fillibustered were the higher court appointees, therefore more important. Two nominees, Janice Rogers Brown and especially Miguel Estrada were DC Court of Appeals nominees. That is considered Supreme Court track. Got it? Leaked memos indicate the Dems opposed these nominees because, in part, they were minority Republican nominees and future Supreme Court candidates. Estrada even receieved the "well qualified" stamp of approval by the liberal ABA--supposed to be the "gold standard" of review.

Now, when was the last time Republicans engaged in a partisan fillibuster of a judicial nominee? NEVER. Abe Fortas was fillibustered in the late 1960s because ethical problems--breached the separation of powers by colluding with Johnson. He was fillibustered by both large numbers of both Republicans and Dems.

So,yes, they opened the can of worms, Carla. And if Kerry wins, he will have to deal with it. The precedent is set, and it's too late for whining.