Tags: Trump Administration | Barack Obama | frustration | Democrats | gubernatorial | legislative

Obama's Policies Costing Frustrated State-Level Democrats

By    |   Friday, 17 Apr 2015 08:47 PM

Republican domination in gubernatorial and state legislative races has become "a growing source of frustration among Democrats," the Washington Examiner reported Friday, and many of them say Obama administration policies bear much of the blame.

In an effort to reassure party loyalists, President Barack Obama so far this year has traveled to conservative bastions such as South Carolina, Utah, Idaho, Kansas, and Alabama in an effort to take his case to voters.

Democrats are hoping that a strong showing by Hillary Clinton in next year's presidential race will have a carryover effect in state and local contests. But many analysts are skeptical of the premise that one solid presidential election will enable them to reverse the trend.

"Basically, every president since World War II has lost substantial numbers of state legislatures, governors, you name it — but Obama has the record," said University of Virginia political scientist Larry Sabato.

"When you have midterms like 2010 and 2014, there's almost nothing you can do to overcome that in one election," Sabato told the Examiner. "It matters because Democrats are wiping out the bench for their party."

Since 2008, the newspaper reported, Democrats have lost control of 69 House seats, 13 Senate seats, and 910 state legislative seats. In addition, the party has lost 11 governorships and 30 state legislative chambers.

After November's midterms, Democratic National Committee officials said the party needed to do better at putting forward a message that would attract support outside major metropolitan areas and win over more white voters.

Some of the Democratic Party's poorest performances with white voters in November occurred in 10 Southern states with a Senate election on the ballot.

In those states, "Republicans won the white vote by an average of 42 points," the Associated Press reported. "Democrats garnered so little support among whites in Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Texas that a majority of those voting for the Democratic candidate were non-white."

The Obama administration is already paying the price for the Democratic Party's big losses in the 2010 and 2014 midterm elections.

About two dozen states are opposing the president's push for Medicaid expansion, and red states are leading the challenge to Obama's executive amnesty efforts. Many of the red states are fighting Obama's push to unilaterally impose new limits on carbon emissions as well.

But for the Democratic Party, perhaps the most troubling aspect of Obama's political legacy could well come during congressional redistricting.

In 2021, state officials will redraw the congressional lines. If Democratic fortunes don't improve at the state and local levels in the next six years, Republicans may well be in a position to draw political maps giving them control of the House of Representatives for the following decade.

In short, Obama is on track to leaving a political legacy that includes a new era of GOP dominance at the state level, a reality the president's supporters concede.

"It's cyclical, but those losses have to be a part of the broader Obama story," a veteran Democratic pollster told the Examiner. "It's a massive hole to dig out of — we could feel this for years to come."

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Republican domination in gubernatorial and state legislative races has become "a growing source of frustration among Democrats," the Washington Examiner reported Friday, and many of them say Obama administration policies bear much of the blame.
frustration, Democrats, gubernatorial, legislative
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2015-47-17
Friday, 17 Apr 2015 08:47 PM
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