The pro-life movement is not partisan; however, in national elections Republicans are overwhelmingly more pro-life than Democrats. Accordingly, evidence of a Republican resurgence this fall may have a substantial impact on the future of unborn babies. Fred Barnes of the Weekly Standard recently said, “The good news for the Republicans in 2010 is that they are ahead in 6 races for Senate seats now held by Democrats, and lead or are tied in 6 open seats where Republicans are retiring. In the House, Republicans figure to win a minimum of 20 seats as things now stand. There is a good bet that Republicans will have a majority of the nation’s governors after the mid-term elections. And the bad news? There is no bad news.”
Granted, Fred Barnes is a conservative Republican; nevertheless, this is not all wishful thinking. At present, it doesn’t look like the Republicans will gain 10 in the Senate, or 40 in the House to capture a majority, but there is a trend in that direction.
Polls now indicate that the Republicans may pick up as many as 5 seats in the Senate. Considering that in 2012 there are only 9 Republicans running for reelection compared to 24 Democrats, this year’s election could set the stage for the Republicans to take over the Senate in 2012. In that event, pro-life senators would likely control the agenda instead of the current pro-abortion senators. Let’s look at some individual races.
Almost certainly, pro-abortion Harry Reid (D) of Nevada will be defeated. In Colorado, popular pro-life Jane Norton (R) is running ahead of incumbent Michael Bennet (D) for the Senate. In Arkansas, pro-abortion incumbent Blanche Lincoln (D) is, unbelievably, running behind all four Republicans who seek to oppose her.
The Delaware seat, vacated by Joe Biden, finds moderate Mike Castle (R) leading all potential Democrats. Vice President Joe Biden’s son has now declined to run. Pennsylvania, which at first looked like a shoe-in for pro-abortion Arlen Specter (D), has changed. Specter has a tough primary fight, with the winner running against pro-life Pat Toomey (R) who is polling ahead of both of them.
Mostly pro-abortion Byron Dorgan (D) is vacating his Senate seat in North Dakota, the popular and pro-life Governor, John Hoeven (R), is likely to run and would almost certainly replace him. In Illinois, Barack Obama’s old Senate seat, temporarily held by a pro-abortion Democrat, is up for grabs and Congressman Mark Kirk (R) is running even in the polls.
The 6 open Republican seats all look pretty secure. At this writing, it looks like Florida Republicans may favor pro-life Speaker Marco Rubio over moderate Governor Charlie Crist, and either should win the general election. The Kansas seat is being vacated by Sam Brownback (R) who is odds-on favorite to be its next governor. A Republican is all but certain to replace him. The 2 candidates, Reps. Jerry Moran and Todd Tiahrt, are both solidly pro-life.
New Hampshire, which recently has trended Democrat, now finds reportedly pro-life Attorney General Kelly Ayotte (R) leading in its Senate race. Ohio has always been and will remain an important swing state. Republican George Voinovich is retiring, with pro-life Rob Portman (R) leading as his replacement. In Kentucky, Jim Bunning (R) was very weak and has decided not to seek reelection. This has increased the chances for a Republican replacement.
From here it looks as if we are going to see a Republican wave this fall. If in fact this continues to develop, it may well convince more pro-abortion Democrat incumbents that they should retire. More of their open seats would mean added opportunities at filling them with pro-life Republicans. According to Fred Barnes, Republicans to date have been very successful in lining up what he calls “top-tier” candidates in literally every district that might conceivably elect a Republican. Among these, of special interest, is pro-abortion Rahm Emanuel’s seat in Chicago. He is currently the President’s chief of staff.
Turning to governors, the Republicans have a clear shot in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and may well be competitive in Ohio, California, Michigan and Illinois.
The fact that this is an off-year election in which voters tend to be more senior, more Caucasian and more conservative is statistically in the Republican’s favor.
Enthusiasm is a factor. The cloud of pessimism that permeated Republican hopes a year ago has lifted, and if trends continue, we may very well see more enthusiasm and excitement on the Republican side which, of course, would bring out more of its voters. This will likely be the result, as a 10% unemployment rate shows no sign of abating in the near future.
Whatever direction Mr. Obama’s health care initiative takes, it looks from here, as far as the election is concerned, that it is a lose-lose situation. It seems obvious that the main Democrat counterattack will be to continue to tie the present troubles to former President George W. Bush. There is a saying in the South, however, that that dog won’t hunt. After a full two years, the problems such as they are, or will be, are squarely on Mr. Obama’s shoulders and not Mr. Bush’s.