Is the Red Wave Back On?

With a little more than a month to go before the mid-terms, many analysts have decided that the Republican wave election expected just a few weeks ago has now been called off.

CNN commentator Chris Cillizza posted this late yesterday:

Republican groups are increasingly hyper-focusing their resources on the several dozen races that hold the most promise to get them to a bare majority of 218, rather than the next 20 to 30 races that would get them to the larger ‘governing majority’ Kevin McCarthy has hoped for,” wrote David Wasserman, the House editor at the Cook Political Report with Amy Walter, on Friday.

Wasserman put the ceiling on Republican gains at 20 seats.

That prediction comes just days after Inside Elections, another non-partisan tip sheet, ratcheted down its prediction for Republican gains in the House from a range of 12-30 seats to a range of 8-20 seats.

I’m not so sure. It feels to me like the Republican tide that rolled out around Labor Day is rolling back in with a fury. To put it in sports terms Democrats may have peaked too early.

Voters have been saying, understandably and consistently, that the economy is their top concern and virtually all of the economic news is bad. Inflation remains stubbornly high, the Fed is responding with ever higher interest rates and that, in turn, has led to a bear market, much higher mortgage interest rates and more talk of recession. Democrats would like this cycle to be all about abortion rights. But if this election turns out to be a referendum on how people are feeling about the economy, well, I’d say red wave back on.


Published by dave cieslewicz

Madison/Upper Peninsula based writer. Mayor of Madison, WI from 2003 to 2011.

4 thoughts on “Is the Red Wave Back On?

  1. I agree. Bad economic times / high crime are good for Republicans. Look for outlets like CNN to sugarcoat it up to election. Is it true they called Ian a “mostly peaceful” Hurricane?

    I kid.


  2. Dave – I have to reluctantly agree with your assessment. Unfortunately, inflation has multiple drivers, which makes it resistant to the Federal Reserve’s belated and panicky attempts to bring it under control. The Russian-Ukrainian war has jacked up energy prices, which increases the cost of producing pretty much everything. Worldwide drought conditions are beginning to take down agriculture, which will drive up the price of food no matter what the Fed does. And of course, here in America, both parties continue to spend money we don’t have.


  3. A weak candidate for US Senate doesn’t help. The question is how did the Wisconsin handlers and leadership/money people decide no primary for US Senate was better than where we are now? What are the odds of a Republican supermajority in the Legislature if Gov. Evers squeaks this out?

    To me, the Democratic party is beyond broken in this state and needs centrist leadership or it keeps on in the same direction it is now. Like minded people agreeing with each other but not governing or even a factor anymore. Sen. Johnson is beatable but you have to have the right candidate. Far left endorsements feel good but don’t win victories.

    I hope I am wrong.


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