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The Media Will Have a Hard Time Spinning a Democrat Loss

Over at Wizbang Politics there are several posts linking to stories about the way some in the media are spinning recent polls and how many are overplaying the Democrats' edge. I just wonder how the election results will be spun if the Democrats fall short. Such high expectations are being set that if Democrats do not win enough seats to take control of the House and/or Senate the story of their failure will be huge.

I am sure the media will find some way to spin it though. I remember in one election (I'm not sure which year, but it was when Arianna was still supposedly on the right) the Republicans lost some seats, but not enough to lose the House. The election results were reported as a huge loss for the GOP because they lost some seats they previously held. The media story was all about the huge win for Democrats. What frustrated me was the fact that none of the reports I saw explained that Republicans still won more races than the Democrats. They still had more seats in Congress. Every seat in the House is up for grabs every two years and Republicans had won more of them than Democrats had, they just had not won as many as they had two years earlier. Their margin of victory was slimmer than expected, but the GOP had been victorious. No one watching the news reports would have known that though. Democrats had won the expectations game and they had won a few more seats than they were "supposed" to win so every report I saw painted the Republicans as the losers, even though they still controlled the House.

With expectations so high, if Democrats don't retake control of Congress it will be hard to spin it as anything but a disastrous defeat, even if they only fall a few seats short of the mark. And just for the record, I still think Republicans can hold the House and Senate. The Foley scandal hurt because it stopped GOP momentum that was building and overshadowed stories of good economic news (falling gas prices and record Dow, among others), but there are still quite a few races that could go either way and some good, smart, hard work can still tip the scales.


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Comments (23)

If the Dems do not win it m... (Below threshold)
Rick:

If the Dems do not win it may be the end of pre- election political polling.

All of these forecasts are based on polls which appear to have falling participation rates.
(I check caller id before answering the phone)

So instead of forecasting the news they will have to back to reporting it.

The Democratic party has al... (Below threshold)
bruhaha:

The Democratic party has already set up a few ready-made responses should they fall short in this election, and you can expect the compliant MSM to echo some if not all of them needed:

1) The Republicans GERRYMANDERED a lot of the seats, giving themselves an unfair advantage (beginning with citing Texas and "Delay's role" I suspect)

2) "Election fraud" (about which Dems should know a fair amount!!) --Voting machines made by "Republican" companies were manipulated

3) Bush & Rove conspired with oil companies to bring down gas prices and fool the American people. (Over 40% of the population is already willing to believe such a preposterous notion.)

In short. . . the Republicans CHEATED!! Dems couldn't possibly lose in a fair fight, could they?!

I am sure the medi... (Below threshold)
I am sure the media will find some way to spin it though.

(cough) DIEBOLD (cough)

And don't forget that eeeevil Rethuglicans disenfranchise brown people every chance we get.

I should have hit Post befo... (Below threshold)

I should have hit Post before getting the coffee, not after. But Bruhaha said it so much better. :-)

Lorie:I'll make a ... (Below threshold)
Hugh:

Lorie:

I'll make a friendly wager with you. If the Dems don't take back one of the two I'll wear an I Love George Bush t-shirt for one week. If they do take one, you'll wear an I Love Nancy Pelosi t-shirt for one week. We can work out the details I'm sure.

Hugh

Oh "hughie" (linkman) that ... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

Oh "hughie" (linkman) that is so brave of you.

HughWhere do You f... (Below threshold)
914:

Hugh

Where do You find an I love Pelosi T-shirt?

Walmart?

Lorie:I think 1998... (Below threshold)
eddiebear:

Lorie:

I think 1998 was the election you are talking about. The problem was that year was a bit of a downer. The GOP lost seats in the House and lost every tossup Senate race, save IL. John Edwards, Chuck Schumer, Blanche Lincoln and Evan Bayh (to name a few) came into the Senate, and winnable seats like Patty Murray, Russ Feingold and Ernest Hollings stayed Blue. All of this happened in the 6th year of Clinton's term, when trends had been that the 6th year is a wipeout for the party in the White House.

But that election had the 800 pound gorilla in the room of the looming impeachment of Clinton. If I recall, his base (including many Soccer Moms) rallied to his defense one more time, while many of what we now term the "paleocons" sat out to protest the fact they didn't believe the GOP was pushing impeachment hard enough.

Nice to see someone else ou... (Below threshold)
Dave:

Nice to see someone else out there that isn't buying into the spin machine that started a few months ago. The Dems WILL NOT win seats or even the house. I'd be suprised if they didn't lose a few. But of course they'll claim a moral victory somehow just like the paul hackett race where it was a victory because Hackett (who didn't mention what party he was running for in his ads and tried to look like a republican) was close to winning it. Somehow because he was close it was some kind of referendum on republicans. Nevermind the fact that HE LOST!!

Every election cycle we hear about how it is inevitable the democrats will take something back or win huge etc... Then they get their butts handed to them and they call it a moral victory...

Someone should also set Hawkins over at http://www.rightwingnews right on this. He's spouting the doom and gloom of the media. One question... What good does it do to run around like chicken little screaming the sky is falling and spouting this garbage out? Right now republicans are the winners, so lets act like it...

914:You can probab... (Below threshold)
IllTemperedCur:

914:

You can probably get them at the CBS News gift shop....

The one thing that can thro... (Below threshold)

The one thing that can throw a major damper on the Dims parade is if every centrist and right winger gets off their high horses or big fat butts and goes to VOTE. George W. Bush and the current congress are far from perfect but they are MILES BETTER than what we could end up with! If GWB is burdened with endless subpoenas and hearings, how's he supposed to fight the GWOT? And that is what we'd have if the Dims win the House of Representatives!

JUST VOTE!

"Right now republicans are ... (Below threshold)
USMC Pilot:

"Right now republicans are the winners, so lets act like it..."

That's the rub. The republicans have had six years to ack like winners, but with the exception of the GWOT, haven't done so. We've got more pork now than when the libs were in control. What happened to "it's spending stupid"?

If the Democrats gain seats... (Below threshold)
John in CA:

If the Democrats gain seats but don't take control (in either chamber), the MSM will trumpet their victory in picking up additional seats.

What? They predicted a Democratic takeover? Why do you say that? No, there weren't any such predictions. Nothing to see here. Move along....

All of your Diebolds are be... (Below threshold)
John F Not Kerry:

All of your Diebolds are belonging to us! Bwahahahahaha!!!

JFK,Not to pick ni... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

JFK,

Not to pick nits, but no 'of' and no 'ing'.

Otherwise, my sentiments exactly.

IF...the Dems achieve whole... (Below threshold)
groucho:

IF...the Dems achieve wholesale gains in both houses, even to the point of regaining control, what will the rightwing spin be?

"IF...the Dems achieve whol... (Below threshold)
Rob:

"IF...the Dems achieve wholesale gains in both houses, even to the point of regaining control, what will the rightwing spin be?"

The right have a built in defense mechanism for any misfiortune that may befall them that they've already cleverly woven into the fabric of the political discourse: blame the MSM.

While the MSM have surely b... (Below threshold)
virgo1:

While the MSM have surely been doing the work the dems cant do the last 6 years, It will not be enough to fool us into allowing them control of anything right now!

Theres to much at stake..fighting terrorism,Tax cuts, Supreme court justices just to name a few.

If republicans get voted out to " punish them " We will be punishing ourselves with the dems just like during the 90's..Does anyone really want to return to that trash again with Pelosi as speaker of the House? Vote to prevent this..

I think it's useful to reca... (Below threshold)
Lurking Observer:

I think it's useful to recall the following:

In off-year elections (aka mid-term elections), it is normal for the party that holds the White House to lose seats. What tends to vary is the number---in some cases, it swings control of an entire chamber (e.g., 1994), in many cases, it simply reduces majorities.

The 1998 and 2002 elections are the exception, not the rule. Personally, I would be very surprised if the Democrats didn't at least pick-up seats. Will they take one or both chambers of Congress? Hard to say---and it may well come down to local, not national issues deciding a handful of nail-biters.

Conversely, if the GOP loses seats, but retains control of both houses, does that mean anything? I'd hate to try and make that argument---or even that no net change necessarily is somehow an endorsement of the Administration.

Off-year elections tend to be a reflection of local issues (and, yes, that even applies to 1994).

What frustrated me was t... (Below threshold)
Brian:

What frustrated me was the fact that none of the reports I saw explained that Republicans still won more races than the Democrats. They still had more seats in Congress.

Because that was obvious, and not what the media cares about. "Things stay the same" is not an exciting news story. There has to be some angle.

Republicans had won more of them than Democrats had, they just had not won as many as they had two years earlier.

The Dems narrowed the margin. That's the news story. If the Reps widen the margin, then that will be the news story. "Nothing changed" isn't a news story. (Nor would you want it to be, if the latter was the case.)

I sure would like to see th... (Below threshold)
spurwing plover:

I sure would like to see the demacrats lose a few and see the liberal press have to eat their words and hope they have a good apppitite for it i sure also would like to see JOHN MURTHA eat crow

>>>>>"Right now republicans... (Below threshold)
Dave:

>>>>>"Right now republicans are the winners, so lets act like it..."

That's the rub. The republicans have had six years to ack like winners, but with the exception of the GWOT, haven't done so. We've got more pork now than when the libs were in control. What happened to "it's spending stupid"?

So you are trying to tell me that the democrats wouldn't have spent MORE than the repubs??? You must have bumped your freakin head. As for more pork now than when the libs were in control?? what planet are you from??

At least terrorist attacks aren't being forgotten about we are doing something about the menace that is facing us in the middle east. Clinton swept North Korea under the rug, as well as bin laden. Clinton was as obsessed with bin laden as a hooker is obsessed with a bible.

Bush has the balls to take on americas problems, but the democrats have no response other than "RUN AWAY!!" Reminds me of the scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail... "RUN AWAY!! RUN AWAY!!!"

So you are trying to tel... (Below threshold)
Brian:

So you are trying to tell me that the democrats wouldn't have spent MORE than the repubs??? You must have bumped your freakin head. As for more pork now than when the libs were in control?? what planet are you from??

Earth, apparently. And you?




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