Wednesday, January 6, 2010

2010 Midterms in Two Words

Jonathan Zasloff has a brief todo list to get unenthused Democrats jazzed up to vote in November. I actually think the midterms can be made even simpler. Health care will be out of the way by the end of the month; climate change and immigration aren't going to happen in an election year, so it's really going to come down to two things.

Banks. And Jobs.

While the absolute level of unemployment does have an impact on elections, the 1934 midterms show that change in unemployment is the more important number. If things are at least headed in the right direction, Dems will get some credit. Past that, it's time to get financial reform done raise holy hell about financial reform. Keep it off the calendar until all the budget bills pass, and then dare Republicans to tie up the Senate to stop it. Do they really want to go into the election as the defenders of Wall Street, the Credit Card industry, payday lenders, and sketchy mortgage originators? I doubt it will do them any good, and it will give Democratic candidates in swing districts something to run on that should be quite popular. At the moment, it looks like losses are coming, but there's a big difference between losing 10 House seats and losing 35.

Update: right, failing to pass financial reform because you can't get past those bastards, given a session where there were in fact some accomplishments elswehere is, arguably, a better situation electorally than passing a watered-down bill. So, allow me to revise and extend.

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