Bright Prospects in a Dark Age

Political analyst Charlie Cook says he’s pretty much a Democrat. He’s also a professional who tries to get things right.

In National Journal this week, Cook says Republicans have stronger prospects than Democrats in next year’s U.S. House races. Since his predictions usually come pretty close to reality, this is especially interesting right now, with the Obama White House dedicating maximum effort to flipping the House.

Some observations:

1) Cook’s analysis dismisses the argument raised by so-called good-government advocates whose prescriptions always seem to bring about a turn to the Left. The promotion of legislative redistricting done by purportedly non-partisan experts instead of elected lawmakers, runs afoul of Cook’s finding that congressional districts initially acquire their partisan identities not through gerrymandering, but because like-minded people congregate together.

2) No one with their wits about them—on the Left or the Right—can doubt the next few years will determine for a very long time what kind of country this is. The Republican House majority has been the last reliable line of defense for constitutional government. Cook’s analysis suggests there’s no excuse for timidity in that role.

3) Cook says one reason ticket-splitting has declined is that “As local print-news readership has declined precipitously in the Internet age, fewer voters are gaining exposure to individual candidates’ backgrounds and qualifications.” We disagree. For as long as we can remember, media coverage of congressional and state legislative campaigns has offered voters little except shallow accusations when it offers anything at all. A far likelier explanation is that voters on both sides of the partisan chasm realize every election is for all the marbles and act accordingly.

But all in all, an informative read from a serious pro.


About Wisconsin Club for Growth
The Club for Growth is a national network of over 40,000 men and women, from all walks of life, who believe that prosperity and opportunity come through economic freedom. Wisconsin Club for Growth, Inc. is dedicated to informing, educating and rallying citizens of Wisconsin to embrace and enact policies that lead to sustained economic growth, limited government, and minimal taxation. Wisconsin Club for Growth can and will have an enormous impact on the direction of our state. Wisconsin Club for Growth believes that effective lobbying is done at all stages of the budget cycle, including when our leaders make public promises and can be encouraged to support policies that spur economic growth. Wisconsin Club for Growth believes we must support pro-growth policies and encourage public officials with backbones to remain truly committed to making our economy and our state stronger. Wisconsin Club for Growth believes our leaders must stand up to the tax and spend mentality in Madison and work tirelessly to cut taxes and unleash the power of the free-market.

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