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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Deep Red: Aftermath of the Louisiana Runoff

Nate Cohn writes at The New York Times:
As Mary Landrieu, a Democratic senator from Louisiana, loss re-election in Saturday’s runoff election, as expected, the Republicans vanquished the last vestige of Democratic strength in the once solidly Democratic Deep South. In a region stretching from the high plains of Texas to the Atlantic coast of the Carolinas, Republicans control not only every Senate seat, but every governor’s mansion and every state legislative body.

Democrats held or controlled nearly every one of them when Mr. Johnson signed that bill in 1964. And they still held a majority as recently as a decade ago. Ms. Landrieu’s defeat would essentially mark an end to the era of the Southern Democrats: the conservative, Southern, white officials, supported by white Southerners, whose conflicted views helped define American politics for half a century.

Today, nearly all of the Democrats holding federal or statewide office in the South will represent so-called “majority-minority” districts or areas with a large number of new residents from outside the region. In the states of the former Confederacy, Democrats will control Senate seats or governors’ mansions only in Virginia and Florida. Not coincidentally, those are the two Southern states where people born outside the state represent a majority of the population. These Democrats bear little resemblance to the Southern Democrats who won by attracting conservative white voters.
AP reports:
Republicans will hold at least 246 House seats come January, according to election results Saturday, giving the GOP a commanding majority that matches the party's post-World War II high during Democratic President Harry S. Truman's administration.
The GOP retained control of two seats in runoffs in Louisiana, expanding the advantage for Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, who can afford defections from his increasingly conservative caucus and still get legislation passed. Combined with the Republican takeover of the Senate, Congress will be all-GOP for the final two years of President Barack Obama's second term.
...
In a Democratic-held district in the Tucson, Arizona-area, an automatic recount will determine whether Rep. Ron Barber keeps his seat or Republican challenger Martha McSally prevails. McSally led by fewer than 200 votes.
If McSally wins, Republicans would have 247 seats, the largest majority since 1929-31 when the GOP controlled 270 seats in President Herbert Hoover's administration.
Philip Klein writes at The Washington Examiner:
On Dec. 24, 2009, the Democratic-controlled Senate passed President Obama’s healthcare law with a filibuster-proof 60-vote majority, triggering a massive backlash that propelled Republicans to control of the House the following year. On the Senate side, going into this year's midterm elections, 25 senators who voted for Obamacare were already out or not going be part of the new Senate being sworn in next month. After Democratic losses on Nov. 4 and Saturday's defeat of Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., the number has risen to 30. In other words, half of the Senators who voted for Obamacare will not be part of the new Senate
Lost and replaced by a Republican:
Left Senate and replaced by a Republican:
Left Senate and replaced by a Democrat:
  • Jim Webb, D-Va.
  • Joe Lieberman, I-Conn.
  • Herb Kohl, D-Wis.
  • Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii
  • Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M.
  • Chris Dodd, D-Conn.
  • Paul Kirk, D-Mass. (appointed to replace Ted Kennedy -- seat later held by Repub Scott Brown)
  • John Kerry, D-Mass.
  • Ted Kauffman, D-Del.
  • Kent Conrad, D-N.D.
  • Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich.
Died in office:
  • Robert Byrd, D-W.V
  • Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii
  • Frank Lautenberg, D- N.J