November 6th, 2010

Republican victory at the state level

This is very impressive:

Republicans took control of at least 19 additional state legislative bodies Tuesday for a total of 26 in which the party controls both chambers, compared with 21 for Democrats and with three still up for grabs. Among these are legislatures in Alabama and North Carolina that had not seen elected Republican majorities since the Reconstruction elections of 1876 and 1870, respectively. Those that argued just two years ago the GOP was in danger of becoming a Southern regional party were proved resoundingly wrong as state legislative chambers in New Hampshire, Maine, Wisconsin and Minnesota flipped to GOP control. Republicans even made major inroads and could end up on top of legislative bodies in Oregon and Washington. Republicans won 16 of 30 races for state attorney general, taking five such offices away from Democrats, pulling within four of their opponents’ total. The GOP also won 17 of 26 secretary of state races, a gain of six, giving the party a 25-22 edge (three states don’t have such offices).

We often pay so much attention to the national picture that we forget the nitty-gritty of local governing. But these and other grass roots changes are exceedingly important.

The above results directly affect Congressional redistricting as well. Yesterday I wrote a post that featured a map of Barney Frank’s gerrymandered district in Massachusetts; that won’t change, since the Democrats continue to control that state. But others will, and don’t underestimate the importance of that fact. Redistricting can only take place every 10 years. Now, thanks to this election, Republicans can influence many more of the districts that go up to make the House of Representatives.

How many? This many according to the Washington Examiner: 197 districts for Republicans vs. 49 for Democrats, with the remaining 189 either with split influence or decided by other means, such as a special commission.

Not a bad result for a day’s work, don’t you think?

[HAT TIP: Instapundit.]

8 Responses to “Republican victory at the state level”

  1. rickl Says:

    I agree. While I was underwhelmed by the results of the federal government races, the gains in the states are very impressive and make me more hopeful.

    Regardless of which party is in power, I do wish that redistricting could be done by bipartisan or nonpartisan commissions, which would draw rational boundaries based mainly on geographical features and neighborhoods. It’s probably a forlorn hope, I realize.

  2. strcpy Says:

    One of the interesting thing about that too is that probably means most just hit a straight republican ticket.

    Attorney General? How many of them really even campaign much? There may be a few districts that your state legislators do so too, but not very many. Those are votes that typically either go party line or if you know someone was an idiot.

    That shows how *strong* the backlash against what was going on happened. The Dems are trying their best to stick their heads in the sand (Obama has already once told the new Republicans they have to get in line behind him – um yea, lets see how well that works out).

  3. physicsguy Says:

    Wish I could get more enthusiastic over last Tuesday, but here in CT, it was business as usual in this deeply blue state. I’m resigned to most of the races, but one irks me no end. Our 78 yr old state senator who has held the office for as long as I’ve lived in this town was re-elected again. Many years ago an opponent aptly described her as “never having met a tax she didn’t love”. She’s the epitome of a Democratic busybody who wants to control all aspects of people’s lives…. ugh!

    Like NY, etc. I think soon CT will be singing “California here we come!” as it follows that state into financial oblivion.

  4. dilys Says:

    The impression I have from the Austin American Statesman is that the local media are so shellshocked they can’t even engage the usual spin. One article on a nearby county, one with heavy academic population, is almost literally “A Democrat couldn’t be elected dogcatcher right now.”
    Purple Hays County goes red after GOP sweep in elections

  5. SteveH Says:

    It’s all purely a problem with democrat communication skills. Ummm hmmm.

  6. rickl Says:


    Purple Hays

  7. Nate Whilk Says:

    Very interesting point.

  8. kolnai Says:

    Here’s a good short piece by Fred Siegel of City Journal on the coming “class war”:

    Like everyone else here – or everyone I’ve seen post on the matter – I’m against bailing out Cali or NY in principle.

    But lets say the eventuality that Siegel foresees comes to pass – Cali and NY threaten to default and wreck the credit rating of the whole country. The Democrats begin to hammer their populist class war themes, and oh lord, it starts to resonate.

    What say all? Do we stick to our guns? I’m inclined to say that we do; though I don’t say it confidently. I was always one of those who thought that if we had let the economy “find a bottom” when the crisis struck, the pain would have been deep and pervasive, but the recovery would have been swifter and more robust.

    We didn’t do that, and the price is that every subsequent opportunity to find a bottom is going to be much more painful due to the structural carnage government intervention wreaks.

    But I could be very wrong about what to do in this case.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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