Democratic party leaders insisted the loss wasn’t a harbinger of things to come. “It’s a very difficult district for Democrats,” said Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.Yeah, its gotta be tough to be a Democrat in New York.
Andrea Tantaros at the New York Daily News offers the following:
In a crushing blow to the White House and the Democratic Party, the seat once held by notorious sexter Anthony Weiner switched hands yesterday, with a longshot Republican now heading to the House of Representatives.I can imagine it all right, and it's about time too. November 2012 is still a long way off, but the odds that something good is going to happen in our economy between now and then is just about zero.
By linking the economic ennui of New York's ninth district (which spans parts of Brooklyn and Queens) to the President, and by making the administration's Middle East policy (specifically, the treatment of Israel) a hallmark of his campaign, former TV executive Bob Turner defeated state Assemblyman David Weprin by a stunning margin of 54% to 46% (with 84% of districts reporting as of late last night). Even 11th hour visits to the district to rally support by Democratic darlings Bill Clinton and Governor Patrick Cuomo could not save the hapless Weprin.
But it's more than New York Democrats who are saying oy vey. The surprising loss of the Weiner seat is an indication of what's to come on the national stage, and why it's looking more likely that Republicans will retain control of the House, with the possibility of the Senate switching back to GOP hands also within reach (Republicans need to win a net of four seats in the Senate to gain a majority).
Despite big celebrations after the passage of Obamacare, the stimulus and financial reform legislation, Obama has given his party little to campaign on with his largely unpopular record, specifically when it comes to jobs. Republicans will spend millions of dollars linking their opponents to Obama and his record, and Democrats who run for office in 2012 will have no choice but to run away from the toxic President, even in what they may once have considered safely Democratic districts. They will exhaust their coffers either painting themselves as "independent" or ignoring Obama's agenda altogether, with incumbents doing everything they can to highlight key differences between their record and Obama's.
Having to spend so much money on defense will spread Democratic funds dangerously thin. In New York's ninth, national Democrats spent more than a half a million defending the Weiner seat, which they never suspected was vulnerable. Getting Democrats to blow critical campaign cash to protect even deeply blue districts is a Republican strategist's dream because it hinders their ability to be competitive elsewhere.
Think about it: If Obama is radioactive in New York City, imagine how his abysmal economic record will play in swing states like Missouri, Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, where he is already suffering.