The Other Big Election Story

The Republican takeover of the US House of Representatives, along with significant GOP gains in governorships and the US Senate were the big headlines of November 2. The Other Big Story is perhaps the really significant news of November 2, however, and is going to have ramifications for the next 10 years and beyond.


That Other Big Story is the Republican takeover of a whopping 19 state legislative chambers (either House or Senate) from Democrats, with more than 500 GOP state legislators across the nation winning seats from Democrats.


This is huge. But much of the Ancient Media are keeping quiet about it because it is seriously bad news for the Democrats and for Obama, perhaps worse than the rest of November 2. Reported Politico.com 


‘In numerous large battleground states, Republicans made substantial gains of governor offices and legislative chambers. That, in turn, will strengthen their hand in next year’s redistricting efforts, which will be launched officially next month when the Census Bureau’s 2010 state-by-state population count will produce the reapportionment of the House that will be elected in November 2012.


In Tuesday’s elections, Republicans gained at least 19 legislative chambers for a total of at least 55 in the 50 states. They will have bicameral control (both houses) in a disproportionate share of the largest states, according to tentative post-election reviews by both parties.’ (end of excerpt)


Under the current system, most states draw the federal congressional districts within their borders through their legislatures. The Republican victories will shift this duty increasingly to Republican state legislators who will act on new 2010 census numbers. And as some states lose congresspeople and others gain, politicians will use this re-drawing tactic to optimize possibilities for their own party to win elections, just as they traditionally have. And it is crucial to recall that ‘the largest states’ mentioned above also have the largest number of electoral votes for the 2012 presidential election.


The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee says that the GOP in 2011 will completely control redistricting (both houses) in states that have 194 House seats, compared with 124 seats for Democrats. In 2001, based on census numbers from 2000, Republicans redrew congressional districts through complete control (both houses) of legislatures in states with 130 seats compared with 101 seats for Democrats. And consider that the party that held the White House in 2002 (the Republicans) actually bucked the trend and gained seats in the mid-term congressional election that year for the first since 1938. So redistricting has much real power.


And as more liberal northern and northeastern states lose federal congressional seats today according to population stagnation or losses, Democrat districts in those states’ shrinking congressional contingents can be re-drawn to favor the GOP, incrementally increasing Republican power in those states.


In Pennsylvania, for instance, Republicans on November 2 took over the state’s House while the GOP retained control of the state Senate. A Republican governor was elected, and Pennsylvania’s proportionately shrinking census numbers mean that it will lose one US congressional seat.


Pennsylvania Republicans will draw the new congressional district lines to squeeze out a Democrat in a ‘swing’ district outside the state’s liberal cities (Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg etc.). They will redraw or ‘gerrymander’ the district so as to put just enough Republicans in a district now held by that Democrat to tip the vote to the GOP and force the Democrat out. This will ideally change Pennsylvania’s GOP seat plurality in the US Congress from 12 to 7 in 2011 to 12 to 6 after the 2012 election if all other congresspeople are re-elected as they currently sit. Other districts could also change, however.


This will happen in many states, and will lead to increased GOP power for the next 10 years and a tough road for Obama in 2012 as more Republicans represent these states and districts in Congress.


To add insult to Democrat injury, Republicans took over governorships from Democrats in four crucial electoral states – Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Wisconsin – which all went for Obama in 2008. Those GOP governors will use their statewide power to promote a Republican presidential candidate in 2012.


In Texas and Florida, whose state legislative bodies now both are controlled by Republicans, there are going to be a total of 6 new US Congress seats. That is a lot of power for Republicans to control in redrawing their state districts.


In two interesting changes to traditional redistricting practices, California voters removed congressional redistricting from the state’s Democrat-dominated legislature, giving the power to a citizens’ commission. Florida voters approved a plan requiring more geometrically regular districts, reducing the chance of weirdly-configured districts in order to favor one party over another.


To add to the bad news for the Democrats who seemed invincible in 2008 and whom Democrat operative James Carville predicted at the time would rule America for two generations, one recent poll puts Obama down in relation to two potential Republican challengers in 2012.


CNN/Opinion Research Corp. polling said 2008 GOP primary contender Mike Huckabee leads Obama by 52-44, while Mitt Romney holds a 50-45 lead over Obama. Sarah Palin trails Obama as does Newt Gingrich, by 49-47.


The poll was taken before the recent election, and the November 2 outcome could alter its results.


Please visit my website at www.nikitas3.com for more. You can read excerpts from my book, Right Is Right, which explains why only conservatism can maintain our freedom and prosperity.