These results don't of course predict a third Dem wave (or even holding steady) in next year's mid-terms, especially if they screw the pooch on health care reform. But it does tell me that a sizable portion of the American electorate is still far more irritated with Cons than Dems.
In the past two weeks, however, there have been actual votes counted around the country, and the results have been far from disastrous for the Democrats:
- Curt Hanson held onto a swing legislative seat in southeastern Iowa, despite the fact that the Democrat was outspent by a 3-to-2 margin and the fact that an outside group (NOM) may well have spent more than either candidate trying to link the Democrat to the gay marriage issue.
- Democrat Norbert Chabert held onto a state Senate seat in inhospitable territory (Obama got less than 30% of the vote in the district), scoring a nine-point win.
- Democrat Robin Webb did one better, picking up a previously Republican state Senate seat in northern Kentucky, in a district that went nearly 3-to-2 Republican in last year's presidential election.
- Finally, although this one was not a general election, it was worth noting that the total vote in the special primary election to replace Ellen Tauscher in CA-10 broke down almost identically to both the Presidential and House partisan breakdown from 2008.
In other words, if there is a nascent Repubican wave in America, it hasn't been apparent over the past few weeks.
That makes me feel slightly better about our nation's prospects. I'm still afraid that Americans will reflexively pull the lever for Cons next year simply because the Cons aren't the party in power - but perhaps these results mean that a healthy majority of my countrymen are smart enough not to get Conned again.
I can but dream...