Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Rubbing it in

By Michael J.W. Stickings

So how did the Democrats do last Tuesday? Pretty well, right? They now control both houses of Congress -- the House by a comfortable margin, picking up 30 seats so far; the Senate by just two seats, although even there they won all the close races except Tennessee and won in generally red states like Virginia, Missouri, and Montana, picking up six seats and surpassing expectations that they would fall just shy of a majority. And they picked up six governorships, giving them 28, winning across the country in red and swing states like Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, and Ohio.

Truly impressive. But there's more, and for that I turn to Chris Bowers of MyDD, who looks at what happened at the state level:

-- "In state legislative bodies, Democrats control 56 chambers, Republicans control 40." And two remain undecided. And the tie in the Oklahoma Senate goes to the Dems.

-- "Democrats control 3,964 state legislature seats, and Republicans control 3,307."

-- "Democrats have new trifectas in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Oregon, bringing our total number of trifectas to sixteen. Our previous trifectas included Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Washington, and West Virginia." Republicans only have ten.

So what does it all mean? -- "We have now almost entirely restocked our bench following the 1994 elections. Our list of potential candidates for higher office at every level is now much longer than it was only six years ago. We also are in a position to favorably remake electoral maps in than we were six years ago. Also, by taking a substantial lead in trifectas, now we can govern for the first time in a long time, shifting the national policy debate decidedly in our favor. The trend for us at the state level has been pretty much straight upward from 2004-2006. As the backbone of our national coalition, this makes our majorities and influence in Washington, D.C. all the greater."

Smile, people, smile. Victory -- and particularly such an impressive one -- is sweet indeed.

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