Democrats took an important step towards removing the GOP from power in Congress with Tuesday's win in Mississippi. No doubt this development has a lot of GOP big-wigs scratching their... wigs.
For the past 18 months, ever since the 2006 elections, congressional Republicans have been like a hospital patient trying to convince visitors that he is not really all that sick: a bit under the weather; actually feel better than I sound; should be up and about any day; thanks for asking.
Suddenly -- belatedly -- all pretense is gone.
The Republican defeat in Tuesday's special election in Mississippi, in a deeply conservative district where, in an average year, Democrats cannot even compete, was a clear sign that the GOP has the political equivalent of cancer that has spread throughout the body. Many House GOP operatives are privately predicting that the party could easily lose up to 20 seats this fall.
Proverbial chickens coming home to roost. Republicans have run roughshod over the American public throughout their
reign of terror term in control of Congress.
Combined with the 30 seats that the GOP lost in 2006, that would leave the party facing a 70-vote deficit against Democrats in the House -- a state of powerlessness reminiscent of Republicans' long wilderness years in the 1960s and '70s.
Things are not particularly more hopeful on the Senate side, where most analysts say Democrats have a strong chance of adding five or more seats to their current majority.
Panic and blame-casting for the dire condition were flowing in equal measures Wednesday inside the House Republican Conference and among party elders and operatives outside.
In the crossfire, there was a bracing new spirit of candor that has largely been missing since 2006, when many Republicans tried to convince the public -- and perhaps themselves -- that the defeat was the result of temporary setbacks, such as the House page scandal or bad headlines for Tom DeLay, rather than something more fundamental.
Republicans have made fundamentally wrong choices for America, and instead embarked on a self-serving, morally righteous crusade that has touched and tainted everything from the Justice Department's US Attorney scandal, to the Iraq march to war and subsequent attempts to involve Iran as a part of a religious imperative to rid the world of Islam.
Now it's time to pay the piper... and poor old John McCain is wheezing his way to November's election dragging this boat anchor behind him.
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