February 7, 2010

Nervous feeling about 2010

The State of the Union gave President Obama a bump in his job approval ratings. The assumption has been that it was temporary and that it would not stick. No big deal. Then there was the meeting the President had with Republicans, which everyone seems to agree helped the President more than the GOP.

When you look at the latest Rasmussen numbers, things seem to be following their previous trajectories.  So why am I getting a nervous feeling about conservative prospects for 2010?

There's nothing to see here either.  That blip was just that, a blip.  It's disappeared already.  There's no cause for alarm, right?  Right?

Starting from the State of the Union address, it hasn't been a great couple of weeks for the Republican party.  And despite having weathered the storm.  Gallup showed a bump for the President that still exists. From even the President is now up 7 points approval over disapproval.  Gallup polls eligible voters instead of likely voters as does Rasmussen.  Rasmussen's methodology tends to be more accurate electorally, but what worries me about Gallup's numbers is that they include the casually politically aware, and they can make a difference if they end up voting.

Again, that's not a big concern just yet.  But I can't help feeling that some of the momentum has just shifted a little bit away from the Republicans and towards the Democrats.  Maybe it's just panic, but consider some of the following points;
-Michael Steele commenting that a million dollars doesn't amount to much, playing into stereotypes about the GOP.

-Most instead of being bouyed by wins in NJ, Virginia and the Massachusetts there's a chance it could give conservatives a chance to become complacent.

-The jobless numbers, while still abysmal, and likely not to get much better by November, have been leveraged by Democrats to "prove" their rememdy for the economy is finally starting to work.  That plays right in to the Gallup-polled casual observers I noted above.  While the numbers aren't as crystal clear as they have been in the past, those casual observers tend not to notice that sort of thing.
Okay, that's not an overwhelming sign of change or a movement adrift, but it's something to take note about.  Nervousness isn't a bad thing - it gives you energy, and energy for a conservative movement is best kept up over the next 9 months.  9 months is a long time in politics and a lot can go just as wrong for the GOP as it has gone right for the past year.  And the worst thing that conservatives can do right now is to become complacent.

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