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Are the Dixie-crats Making a Comeback?

Three recent upsets in special elections for US House of Representative seats in the deep South, have Democrats rethinking their political fortunes in the region. In 1964, President Lyndon Johnson famously said: "There goes the South for a generation" as he signed the Civil Rights Act. But recent and unlikely victories mean it might be time for the Democrats to draw a new map.

Alabama Pollster John Anzalone told the AP:

The Republican brand has taken a hit. When you have economic anxieties, the wedge issues that Republicans use just aren't that important. People aren't fat and happy now. They're worried.

This sounds like a more-nuanced incarnation of Barack Obama's bitter-gate comments.

Another factor helping the Democrats is the fact that candidates are not shy about embracing "values issues" co-opted by the Republicans. Southern voters find pro-life, pro-gun, and anti-gay marriage candidates, running on a Democratic ticket. What makes these candidates different from the Republicans? They do not accept Republican foreign or economic policy, nor do they carry George W. Bush's baggage.

Are the Spring's special election upsets a signal that the Democrats are going to widen their congressional majority this fall. If the incoming Democrats have a lot of red in their platform, what kind of majority will this be? Are Democrats giving up their core values, or finally understanding their constituency, and thus what it takes to win?


Join The Conversation
drinkerofh2o drinkerofh2o 9 years
I cannot believe you just said "bitter-gate". Haha, can't we put the "n-Gate" thing to rest already?
LibertySugar LibertySugar 9 years
Oops! Thanks Jen. Freudian slip? ;-)
syako syako 9 years
The guy who won in La. was Cazoyoux and he was all those things cab. AND the only reason he beat a democrat was because he was running against a known racist and kkk friend... so not much of a victory, guys. sorry.
stephley stephley 9 years
Ted would just look a little slimmer, like 40 years ago. I think both parties are re-arranging themselves and people are finding a middle ground again.
raciccarone raciccarone 9 years
I think they should put the head of Ted Kennedy on the body of Dick Cheney. Not for any political reason, just to see what happens.
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
Socially conservative, fiscally liberal...? What an interesting combination. I love to see this kind of thing. Politicians willing to step outside the party line seems like the closest thing to a multi-party system we're going to see in my lifetime. P.S. Liberty - In that last sentence I think you wanted to say "core" values. I mean, I'm just assuming you didn't want to make the statement that Democrats have poor values... :rotfl:
ladychaos ladychaos 9 years
The closest thing to republican on the democrats side is Hillary Clinton, and she stands for none of those things. Odd article.
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
Thanks J! I'll look more into that!
janneth janneth 9 years
Hey cabaker, Mississippi's Childers "Anti-abortion and pro-gun rights, Childers was able to convince voters that he would represent their values" He is on team purple.
janneth janneth 9 years
That was my unsuccessful attempt at a purple smiley face.
janneth janneth 9 years
Maybe if the Demos are putting some red into their platform, they will be team purple. :IRK:
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
Not trying to be argumentative, I just really can't think of any off the top of my head! :)
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
"Southern voters find pro-life, pro-gun, and anti-gay marriage candidates, running on a Democratic ticket." Could you name a few of those people, because I can't think of any....
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