"Growing sense of doom amongst Democrats"
The nomination of Sarah Palin has definitely changed the dynamics of the 2008 election cycle. Democrats who once seemed assured of building on their majorities in the House and Senate, and potentially achieving a "veto-proof" Senate now seem not so sure about their prospects this November.
The tide has turned so much against this Do Nothing Democrat Congress that they now fear losing seats in both houses of Congress.
First term Democrats who won in the landslide of 2006 are now facing stiff competition in maintaining their seats. As recently as mid August, many of these same Democrats felt as if they were cruising to victory without needing to fight. Now they're struggling just to stay even in their respective races. Some are actually starting to run away from OBama.
Don't take my word for it, here it is in today's Financial Times, the Financial Industry's leading publication.
Democrats on Capitol Hill fear Obama fallout
By Andrew Ward in Washington
Published: September 11 2008 23:30 | Last updated: September 11 2008 23:30
Democratic jitters about the US presidential race have spread to Capitol Hill, where some members of Congress are worried that Barack Obama’s faltering campaign could hurt their chances of re-election.
Party leaders have been hoping to strengthen Democratic control of the House and Senate in November, but John McCain’s jump in the polls has stoked fears of a Republican resurgence.
A Democratic fundraiser for Congressional candidates said some planned to distance themselves from Mr Obama and not attack Mr McCain.
“If people are voting for McCain it could help Republicans all the way down the ticket, even in a year when the Democrats should be sweeping all before us,” said the fundraiser, a former Hillary Clinton supporter.
“There is a growing sense of doom among Democrats I have spoken to . . . People are going crazy, telling the campaign ‘you’ve got to do something’.”
Concern was greatest among first-term representatives who won seats in traditionally Republican districts in the landslide of 2006. “Several of them face a real fight to hold on to those seats,” the fundraiser said.
Tony Podesta, a senior Democratic lobbyist, said members of Congress were “a little nervous” after Mr McCain shook up the race with his choice of Sarah Palin as running mate and intensified attacks on Mr Obama.
“Republicans have been on the offensive for the past two weeks . . . You don’t win elections on the defensive.”
The campaign manager for a first-term Democratic congressman from a blue-collar district in the north-east rejected suggestions that Mr Obama had become a liability. He said his candidate would reach out to Republicans and avoid attacks on Mr McCain.