Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Obama's Coattails Benefit Democrats in U.S. Senate

Congressional Quarterly identifies 24 "battleground states" in the U.S. Senate this year. Six currently held by Democrats and 18 currently held by Republicans.

The Presidential primaries have sucked so much air out of news coverage, no one is talking about the second most important political battle. At stake is whether Democrats can gain a working majority in the Senate, or whether Republicans will still have the power to play obstructionists to a Democratic president.

What really interests me is that Barack Obama has faired much better than Hillary Clinton in the 17 battleground states that have had primaries so far. Obama has won 11 of those contests, and his combined margin of victory/loss in all 17 states is + 13 percent.

Moreover, if you look at how Democrats are casting their votes in the 11 true primary states, Obama beat Clinton by more than 532,000 votes.

In those same states, there have been 1.5 million more ballots cast for Obama than McCain.

If super-delegates are trying to figure out what's best for them, what's best for the party, what's best for the causes that they believe in -- no matter what state they live in -- they need to think about what candidate is going to help them overcome the GOP filibuster in the Senate. Because if Republicans still have the filibuster in the Senate, John McCain might as well be President.

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