Earlier this week in an interview with Politico re: the 2010 mid-terms, Joe Biden, he of sophomoric wit, brevity and intellect, opined that he didn’t really see what everyone was getting all uptight about. According to the king of plagiarism, he didn’t foresee any “grand debacle” engulfing his Party this November.
Now Joe’s not exactly noted for being the most humble guy in the world…nor the brightest. So at first glance, this sounds like Biden gaffing it up again. I mean, can’t the guy read? (Ok, that was supposed to be a rhetorical question but then again, this is Biden we’re talking about here) By every metric, this is looking to be at the very minimum, a “grand debacle” for the Dems this fall.
Gallup’s latest poll shows Obama’s approval rating among Independents at 38%, down 18 points from this time last year, and his 44%, 3-day average among those surveyed ties his lowest total to date (what makes those numbers even more debacle-inducing for Dems is that this wasn’t a survey of Likely Voters. It wasn’t even a survey of Registered Voters. It was a survey of Adults). On the Generic Ballot, RealClearPolitics is showing an average of a 1.7% lead for Republicans vs a Democrat lead of 11.6% the week before the 2008 election.
Presidential approval ratings? Obama’s current RCP approval rating stands at 46.7% vs a disapproval rate of 47.6%. Past election results have shown that when a President’s approval rating moves below 50%, his party loses a substantial number of seats (2006 (Bush) – 38%/-30; 1994 (Clinton) 46%/-53; 1982 (Reagan) 42%/-28)
So is this just Joe Biden being, well, Joe Biden, he of engage mouth before engaging brain fame? Well, it’s hard to argue with that considering Joe’s bombastic propensity. But the Democrats didn’t get to where they are by being stupid (well, at least not politically; as one of my blogging friends wrote the other day, the Dems could figure out a way to elect a jar of Miracle Whip (h/t Amy Miller)). So whether Joe knows something we don’t, or whether he’s just being Joe, we conservatives had best be ready for whatever they will throw at us and remember (insert favorite sports metaphor about over-confidence here).
And what they’re going to throw at us was probably outlined quite nicely in a July 9th WSJ article. They are going to have more photo ops than Keebler has crackers to talk about all the “jobs” that supposedly have been created by all their spending. Look for a CongressCritter near you to be standing on roads and bridges, in front of nursing centers, local museum projects, you name it, talking about how they brought all this to you and the mean, wascally, Wepublicans want to take it all away (in the case of my Congressman, Tim Walz, D-MN1, he will do so while on the next page of his taxpayer funded brochure solemnly intoning about the need to be “fiscally responsible”).
And then, (and here’s the part we better be ready for), when the GOP hits back with the enormous cost of all this (at least we better hit back with that), they will play the “hypocrisy” card. They will find any government program that the Republican candidate has benefitted from and accuse them of hypocrisy for, on the one hand, wanting to cut programs for the poor, downtrodden masses, while they themselves lap at the largess of the public trough.
If you’re a farmer, you’ll be accused of accepting farm subsidies. If you’re the father/mother of a student in college, you’ll be pilloried for accepting college federal aid. Work for a bank that received TARP funds? Expect the hypocrisy card to be played if you’ve received an increase in compensation post-bailout (ask Michele Rollins, Delaware House candidate).
The Democrats know the 2010 electorate is fed up with them. Fed up with their spending, their Cornhusker Kickbacks and their Louisiana Purchases, their passing of unread 2,000 page bills in the dead of night. They might not be Constitutional scholars but they are smart enough to know what a 71.2% Congressional disapproval rating means to their employment prospects post-November.
It would behoove the Republican Party in general, and the campaign staffs of individual candidates in particular, to come up with a strategy now to deal with these charges that they are hypocritical for benefitting from government programs, while they advocate for the reduction of government programs. Our response cannot be some long, dissertation on economic policy, or some esoteric riff on the proper role of Constitutional government. It needs to be short, snappy, and phrased in a manner that will resonate with voters for whom 30 seconds of political interaction is a lifetime.
In other words, if we’re going to ensure that Joe gets his Grand Debacle, we’re going to need to be a bit more like Joe Biden. We’re gonna have to learn how to elect a jar of Miracle Whip.
Originally posted at 73wire.com