posted on May 31, 2007 17:09
There is talk around the legislature that some veteran Democratic Senators will not run for reelection again – and that Marc Basnight may be serving his last term as President Pro Tem.
Republicans certainly would welcome that. Some restive Democrats might even say good riddance. But the Democrats need to ponder their chances of keeping majorities in both the Senate and House last year.
Basnight built a modern political machine – and I use the word admiringly – that kept Democrats and him in power for more than a decade. It’s built on prodigious fundraising and campaigns that are both professionally run and tightly controlled by the caucus.
Ex-Speaker Jim Black had a similar system in the House. It ended the Republican majority in 1998 and kept slim but effective control since.
Black is no longer there. Can Joe Hackney run the same kind of campaign? Republicans, of course, will say that Democrats kept the House majority through bribery and lawbreaking. And they’ll try to say that in next year’s elections.
Democrats in both houses, on the other hand, will say that Republican control will mean devastating budget cuts for education, for health care, for mental health and for other people programs.
It’s no sure thing that message will win. 2008 looks good for Democrats – for now. But a lot of good-looking years have turned sour before.
One problem with being in the majority a long time – witness Republicans in Washington last year – is complacency. North Carolina Democrats had better start worrying about next year’s elections today.
Click Here to discuss and comment on this and other articles.