The latest survey from CBS News and the New York Times explains what is about to happen as Americans go to the polls Tuesday. In a nutshell- people are desperate, they’re not sure what they want, but they are willing to take a risk on extreme or untried candidates.
As women, Catholics, independents and poor Americans abandon the President they voted for two years ago, here are the stats.
57 percent of registered voters said they were more inclined to gamble on a candidate with little experience this year, while a quarter said they could get behind a candidate whose views “seem extreme.”
Folks don’t seem to have a clue about what they actually want. 90% want cuts in federal spending, for example. But only 50% say they want fewer government services.
Did you get that? It bears repeating. 90% want spending cuts but only 50% want cuts in services.
And though they want spending cuts, when it comes to Social Security, they oppose raising the retirement age or cutting benefits, the only two meaningful ways to reign in social security spending.
Americans are almost equally divided on health care. 45% want to keep health care reform. 41% want to repeal it.
There will be surprises around the country when the votes are tallied next Tuesday. In a race here and a race there. But there is just too much pain and suffering to think there will not be a ton of incumbents shown the door and almost all of them will be Democrats.
When the dust settles, I don’t believe it will be the tsunami predicted in August because a lot of Democrats have come home. But the independents that helped elect Barack Obama are gone. And as the survey says-they are not put off by either extremism or novice politicians.
I think the electorate as a whole will throw out about 46 or 47 House Democrats and about a half a dozen Senators. My forecast is a Republican House majority of about 8 seats and a Democratic Senate majority of 52 to 48.
Bipartisanship heading into the two-year period prior to a Presidential election seems too much to hope for and that would be quite unfortunate. There are reasonable economic approaches on both sides of the aisle that considered- outside the heated world of partisan political rhetoric- could help put the country back to work and on the road to healing.
This would be a good time to pray for America and that its politicians act as real leaders.