Monday, February 15, 2010

Another Shock for Obama and the Left Wing of the Democratic Party

Wow, the rats are deserting the sinking ship in droves these days. The National Post reports that Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana has announced that he will not run for re-election in November.
"Already reeling from the loss of the late Ted Kennedy's Senate seat in Massachusetts to a Republican, U.S. Democrats on Monday suffered a new blow to their hopes of retaining control of Congress with the unexpected retirement of Indiana Senator Evan Bayh, one of the party's leading moderates.

Mr. Bayh's decision to quit Congress immediately boosts Republican chances of claiming his Indiana seat and sparked renewed concern that the Democrats -- who until recently controlled 60 of 100 seats in the Senate -- may end up losing their majority altogether in this fall's midterm elections.

Mr. Bayh, a two-term senator and former Indiana governor, was at one point considered a front-runner to be Barack Obama's vice presidential running mate in 2008. Speaking to supporters in Indianapolis, Mr. Bayh cited toxic partisanship and political gridlock in Washington as the reason he is giving up a safe Democratic seat in an otherwise conservative-leaning state. . .

Democrats hold 59 of the Senate's 100 seats after last month's victory by Republican Scott Brown in the Massachusetts' special election. That result stunned the White House and underscored voter anger at high unemployment, rising deficits and the Democrats' difficulties reining in Wall Street excesses.

Republicans need to win 10 Senate seats in November to retake the majority and at least seven are within their grasp, according to University of Virginia political scientist Larry Sabato's most recent projection.

The potential Democratic losses include Obama's former Senate seat in Illinois, Hillary Clinton's former seat in New York, Senate majority leader Harry Reid's Nevada seat, Vice-President Joe Biden's former Delaware seat, the North Dakota seat held by retiring Senator Byron Dorgan and Senator Barbara Boxer's seat in liberal-leaning California.

The Democrats' problems don't stop at the doors of the Senate chamber. They currently hold a 40-seat majority in the House of Representatives, but an estimated 50 Democratic seats are considered to be in danger of falling to the GOP. Sabato currently projected Republicans will pick up 27 House seats.

For months, Mr. Bayh has been among the Democrats predicting electoral calamity unless the party is able to forge a more moderate agenda.

"If you lose Massachusetts and that's not a wake-up call, there's no hope of waking up," Mr. Bayh told ABC News after Republicans won the seat held by Mr. Kennedy for 47 years.

"Whenever you have just the furthest left elements of the [Democratic] party attempting to impose their will on the rest of the country, that's not going to work too well.""

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