…some of the same unlikely states that Obama put in his party’s column 15 months ago feature Senate, House and governor’s races with Democratic candidates in grave danger of losing in what is quickly shaping up to be a toxic election cycle.
While off-year and down-ballot elections are inherently different than presidential contests, the rapid reversal in Democratic fortunes in the very places where Obama’s success brought so much attention suggests that predictions of a lasting realignment were premature.
And it’s raising the question of whether the president’s 2008 win was the result of a unique set of circumstances that will be difficult for him to replicate again and perhaps downright impossible for other Democrats on the ballot to reprise.
The great danger for the Republican party, post-2008, was always that President Obama would manage to resist the temptation to give into the encouragement of his sycophants and act like unto a demigod. Unfortunately (speaking as an American), he didn’t: he instead combined passivity and arrogance to a degree that mainstream political scientists are just now starting to understand. Me, I knew, starting in December 2008 (and the GA/LA elections), that Obama’s touch wasn’t a cure-all. When they write the books on the 2010 elections, they’ll probably start with those races, and why the Democrats shouldn’t have eased up on them…