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Bryan Preston


November 21, 2013 - 11:26 am

President Obama delivered remarks today supporting Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid’s decision to deploy the “nuclear option” ending minority filibusters of some judicial nominees. The Democrats tried to limit the effect of their action, stating that it only applies to nominees below the Supreme Court level.

But the damage done will go far beyond judicial nominees. Bipartisanship in the Senate is dead. Harry Reid and Barack Obama had already done grave damage to it by passing Obamacare. Today they finished it off.

Democrats currently hold a 53 seat majority, plus 2 Independents who tend to side with the Democrats. A loss of just six seats will hand the Republicans the majority in the Senate. After today, that majority means far more and will be far more consequential.

In the 2014 midterm elections, Democrats will be defending more vulnerable seats than Republicans will be. Several Democrats currently holding seats in GOP states were already vulnerable. They include:

Mark Begich, Alaska

Mark Pryor, Arkansas

Mark Udall, Colorado

Open Seat, Iowa (Harkin retired)

Mary Landrieu, Louisiana

Open Seat, Michigan (Levin retired)

Mac Baucus, Montana

Jean Shaheen*, New Hampshire

Kay Hagan, North Carolina

Tim Johnson, South Dakota

Joe Manchin, West Virginia

That’s 11 races, 12 if you count Al Franken in Minnesota, who won his seat very narrowly in what may have been a stolen election. Minnesota has become a competitive state for Republicans in recent years.

The trends in Alaska, Arkansas, Lousiana, North Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia have tended to favor Republicans in the Obama years. Manchin essentially ran as an anti-Obama Democrat to win his seat, only to turn around and support a controversial gun control measure that ultimately failed. Colorado has swung blue but this year Republicans knocked off a handful of Democratic state senators thanks to another gun control measure.

Reid and Obama are claiming victory today, but it’s a Pyrrhic victory. They will get 11 months to push their extreme judicial nominees into the courts without any input from Republicans. But this is more about politics than nominations. The move comes at a time when Obama needs some headline other than “Obamacare fails again.” He needed some way to fire up his base and give the media something else to talk about. He has accomplished that, for a day or two, and done away with rules that date back to the creation of the Senate along with it.

In 2014 Democrats will be running against a wave of public rejection of Obamacare, which has never been popular. A majority want it either overhauled or repealed. Thanks to today’s “nuclear” strike, Republicans can run all of the above races as “the 51st vote” to repeal Obamacare in the Senate. Landrieu is doubly vulnerable now, having voted for Obamacare and now having voted to support the nuclear option. Her likely opponent, Dr. Bill Cassidy, can run a two-pronged campaign against her as a tool of Obama, who is not popular in Louisiana, and a fool for Obamacare. She and Pryor, who voted against the nuclear option today, may be as good as gone. Udall, Begich and Hagan aren’t far behind them.

*I originally had NH as an open seat. My mistake.

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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All Comments   (12)
All Comments   (12)
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Montana has Max (not Mac) Baucus retiring and will be an open seat that will more than likely go to Steve Daines, our Representative.
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
Now that it is clear the dems have no problem ramming thru their own agenda - even if they have to change the rules to do so - then the favor should be returned in January 2015 with a vengeance.

Make the impeachment and removal of judges seated between now and thru 2014 a priority. Make sure all candidates for such seats know that they are volunteering for that treatment when they agree to take the job in the first place knowing is going to be fatally tarnished by the process.

Repeal Obamacare and other favored liberal laws as punitively as possible as punishment for what they did today.

Make em feel the burn.
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
All this 'nuclear option' does is make it easier for the progressives to pack the appeals court system. A judicious House/Senate inquiry into some of those judges might end up in impeachment - its how bad judges get removed. Something not often done - unfortunately.

In the long term the 'nuclear option' is a fart in the wind - when the dust/smoke/stench clears O'Care will still be the millstone around the collective neck of all progressives. Its what they are terrified of. They had no idea We The People would revolt in such a manner to The Smartest Man in the World.

40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Bipartisanship in the Senate is dead."

I disagree. McCain, Graham, Murkowski, et. al. will *always* reach across the aisle and help the Democrats defeat Republicans. It is what they do, and they cannot stop any more than they can stop breathing. And McConnell has no indication of having a spine.

But today does mark the death of another part of the American Republic.

Subotai Bahadur
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is surrender. They know they are going to get creamed in 2014. They know they are going to lose the Senate. So, they have decided to get through as many of their radical judges as possible, before they lose power.

This is great news. I especially like that they have set this precedent. Now, once the GOP gets into power, they can extend this to other things, like legislation, and they can eventually repeal ObamaCare.
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
The problem is that the consummately evil leftists have demonstrated time and again that they are better at lying, cheating and stealing than any other group in American history.

They know full well what the consequences will be if the Republicans get a majority, and obviously believe that it won't happen, because IRS, Census Bureau, voter fraud, media, etc., etc., etc, etc., etc., etc.

But Karl Rove will have a different opinion, and certainly, he knows best. Right?
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
I'd give you my opinion on Rove but the 'editor' won't allow such words. Suffice it to say "screw Rove"!

40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
Sir, with due respect,
Republicans are pussies. Democrats are evil but they are not pussies.

Your analysis is wrong.
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
Just nationalized? Just?
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
What's with the "open seat" in NH? Did Shaheen announce she's not seeking reelection?
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hopefully this will be honestly portrayed for what it is - ramming through radical judges, using the same tactics as when they rammed through Obamacare, in order to FURTHER USURP the will of the people; as usual, the neo-communists will get radical activist judges to enact (or block) legislation they cannot get passed by the vote of the electorate. The obvious lesson to be taken away: NEVER trust neo-communists with unchecked power....

Remember BENGHAZI!
40 weeks ago
40 weeks ago Link To Comment
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
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