AMAC Exclusive – By Barry Casselman
If you look at the state legislative map of the United States, you will see a mass of red (Republican) punctuated by islands of blue (Democratic), with some larger blue islands on the northeast and west coasts. Not surprisingly, the actual numbers fit the visuals, with two-thirds of state houses and state senate chambers controlled by the GOP.
Of the approximately 7,500 state legislators in the U.S., just under 4,100 are Republicans and about 3,350 are Democrats. Only 40 state legislators call themselves Independents or something else.
Similarly, more states have Republican governors than Democrat governors.
Most Democratic voters are clustered in areas that are relatively small geographically, but densely populated in places such as California, New York, Illinois, and a few other states.
According to projections by CNalysis in a recent issue of Inside Politics, a nonpartisan elections newsletter, this significant grassroots legislative GOP advantage could be increased by triple digits in the forthcoming national mid-term elections in November, now less than six months away. Their potential projection, based on wave elections, both red and blue, of the past might even underestimate the actual results if indeed 2022 turns out to be not only a red wave, but a red tsunami.
Contrast this with the federal picture — that is, a Democratic president, and both houses of Congress narrowly controlled by the left of center party trying to advance an unpopular agenda of higher taxes, more regulations, open borders and unrestricted immigration, prioritizing alternative energy sources while restricting oil and coal resources during energy shortages, economic policies that exacerbate inflation and vital supply chains, planning to forgive college debt that is inevitably passed on to the general public, promoting censorship and political correctness, and proposals to pack the U.S Supreme Court. Although Democrats were initially all-in to defund the local police and impose self-destructive rent controls, voter backlash has prodded many Democratic candidates to reverse themselves on these issues. A clear rebuke in the 2021 elections of anti-parent liberal policies on secondary school education further turned away voters from the Democrats.
Some observers have suggested that the leaked draft of a potential U.S. Supreme Court decision reversing Roe v. Wade might rally Democratic voters and lead to a mid-term election surprise. Because the abortion issue arouses such intensity on both sides, some observers think it might boost turnout on the left, but initial polls indicate that while pro-choice women, particularly in the suburbs, are upset by the potential decision, their vote is much more dependent on inflation, the price of gasoline, and other economic issues
The Court decision does not, furthermore, ban early abortion, but simply turns the issue back to the individual states. Pro-choice partisans also downplay the fact that polls indicate that almost half of U.S. adult women are to some degree pro-life and would applaud the decision. In short, the issue is not likely to be a decisive one.
The Republican dominance of local and state politics is not new, especially in rural, small town and suburban areas. The establishment media, of course, downplays it, but support for conservative policies at the grassroots level forms the backbone of the right-of-center sentiment now taking shape ahead of the November elections. It also explains why President Biden is getting no poll number bounce from the Ukraine war. Normally, administrations and presidents see a “rally-round-the-flag” increase in their polls during international conflicts, but Biden was slow to act, and has been overshadowed by European leaders.
The map tells the true story. It will take much more than public relations gambits (“messaging”) to alter the course of the mid-term elections now.
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