Wednesday, December 03, 2008
No 60 This Year...
Saxby Chambliss easily wins run-off reelection bid in Georgia, denying Democrats of a de jure filibuster-proof majority (regardless of what happens in Minnesota). Obama played it smart, frankly, by not campaigning there. No reason to expend political capital on a race that the GOP were likely to hold onto anyway (Chamblis narrowly missed the 50 percent threshold he needed to win outright on Election Day).|
However, it may just be delaying the inevitable, given that Florida's Mel Martinez announced two years early that he won't run for re-election in 2010. This suggests that Republicans bleak last two cycles may actually continue for a third even though Obama will be in his midterm (usually a moment to vote against the guy in the White House). The economy will probably still be pretty crummy. Though more Republican seats are up for grabs (19 vs. 16 for Democrats), the last thing the GOP needs is more Republican retirements. An open seat is always a better target for a challenger than one filled by an incumbent.
The former RNC chairman has done his party no favor here (cynics -- and those actually in the know -- would say that he did his party no favors when he was chairman for that matter). Hunch is that Martinez will go down in history as the most memorable Florida senator since Paula Hawkins!