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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Democrats' Agenda Is Hurting Them Politically

Joel Kotkin notes the impact on suburbs:

For the first time in memory, the suburbs are under a conscious and sustained attack from Washington. Little that the adminstration has pushed—from the Wall Street bailouts to the proposed “cap and trade” policies—offers much to predominately middle-income-oriented suburbanites and instead appears to have worked to alienate them.

And then there are the policies that seem targeted against suburbs. In everything from land use and transportation to “green” energy policy, the Obama administration has been pushing an agenda that seeks to move Americans out of their preferred suburban locales and into the dense, transit-dependent locales they have eschewed for generations.

As in so many areas, this stance reflects the surprising power of the party’s urban core and the “green” lobby associated with it. Yet, from a political point of view, the anti-suburban stance seems odd given that Democrats' recent electoral ascendency stemmed in great part from gains among suburbanites. Certainly this is an overt stance that neither Bill nor Hillary Clinton would likely have countenanced.

Health care is hurting, as David Brady, Daniel Kessler, and Douglas Rivers document:

We have polled voters in 11 states likely to have competitive Senate races in November on how they feel about health reform and how they might vote in November. The interviews were conducted from Jan. 6-11 with 500 registered voters in Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, Missouri, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The polls were conducted by YouGov using a panel of Internet users selected to be representative of the registered voters in each state.

Health reform is more popular in some of these states than in others. Where it's popular, Democratic candidates don't have too much of a problem, but where it's unpopular—and that includes most states—the Democratic Senate candidates are fighting an uphill battle. Support for health reform varies in these 11 states from a low of 33% in North Dakota to a high of 48% in Nevada. Democrats trail Republicans in six of the states; three are toss-ups; and in two, Democrats have a solid lead.