Democrats have experienced a nearly unprecedented reversal of fortune lately, and the bad news just keeps on coming. Arkansas Representative Marion Berry became the sixth Democrat to announce his retirement, and his district is expected to go Republican in November. He told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that he urged the White House not to repeat the mistakes of 1994, when congressional Democrats were defeated resoundingly at the polls. He said Obama fired back, “Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was, you’ve got me.”
The arrogance necessary to make that kind of comment suggests that Obama has been tapping the keg of his own Kool-Aid. Given the disastrous results of his efforts on behalf of gubernatorial candidates in Virginia and New Jersey, and on behalf of Ted Kennedy’s senatorial heir apparent in deep-blue Massachusetts, he’s vastly overestimating his marquee value. His much-vaunted health care plan is all but dead, and now House and Senate Democrat leaders will be lucky to keep more members from retiring early. So maybe the “big difference” Obama was referring to is the loss of even more than 54 seats in the House.
Even Vice President Joe Biden’s son Beau has seen the writing on the wall. He announced this week that he would not run for the Senate seat vacated when his father became VP. Beau, who is Delaware’s Attorney General, indicated that he’s just too busy with a controversial child abuse case to focus on a statewide race. Yeah, right. If the Democrats in Massachusetts can’t keep the “Kennedy Senate seat” that they held for half a century, what chance does the vice president’s son have in Delaware? Republican candidate Mike Castle, a popular congressman and former governor, raised almost $2 million in campaign cash and has run virtually unopposed while Biden was still making up his mind about whether to run.