Monday, May 04, 2009

Political Deaths

Jack Kemp is dead. The former Buffalo Bills quarterback and Republican Vice-Presidential nominee (Dole-Kemp '96), HUD Secretary and Congressman died Saturday. I think his death may have a little more metaphorical meaning this week in the wake of the defection by Sen. Specter. Kemp is the last Republican nominee for either top job from east of the Mississippi and perhaps more importantly he was the last in a long line of northeastern Republicans to get a nomination. The Republican fortunes in the Northeast are getting bleaker by the day. They now hold 3 senate seats from Pennsylvania to Maine. With former Obama Commerce Secretary designate Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH) retiring, there is a strong chance that number will dwindle to just the two senators from Maine after 2010. There are no Republicans in the house from New England. There was a time that the Republican party was synonymous with small-c conservatives in the Northeast. No more.


Andy said...

Well, there have only been four different presidential and vice-presidential candidates since Kemp, so it's a fairly small sample size. By the same token, the last Democratic candidate from *west* of the Mississippi was Lloyd Bentsen. While the general trend you cite is interesting, I suspect that northeasterners aren't the types to elect only Democrats in perpetuity -- these things run in cycles and when people get mad over the next four (or possibly eight) years it will be the Democrats they're mad at.

Aaron Ginsberg said...

I agree these things run in cycles. However, the Dems don't have a problem in the West (5 new senate seats in the last two elections; Obama won in Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada; congressional wins up and down including in red Utah) like the Republicans do in the Northeast.

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