More on Strategy (Again)

Today at Tapped, Yglesias looks at the Dem’s odds and suggests:

Thanks to gerrymandering, the Senate's natural malapportionment, and various forms of incumbent advantage it will be -- as the article acknowledges -- extremely difficult for the Democrats to recapture either house of Congress, even given a very favorable public-opinion terrain. Democrats could easily capture 54 percent of the vote and still leave the GOP with a majority of seats.

If, under the circumstances, Democrats make gains but the GOP retains control, the real moral of that story will be that the Republican stranglehold on power is essentially impregnable.
I’m not convinced that if the Dems fail to secure a majority in 2004, it is most indicative of an impregnable GOP stranglehold on power. Such an assertion is predicated on the notion that Congressional districts are invulnerable to encroachment from an opposition party, and it seems to me that Paul Hackett’s near miss in a resolutely red district proves that’s not necessarily the case. Many districts, even gerrymandered, are won within close margins.

Sirota also takes issue with Yglesias (emphasis mine):

I believe Democrats losing in 2006 would be less of a commentary on the GOP's power, and more of a referendum on how Democrats' unwillingness to take concrete, sometimes controversial positions on the major issues of the day has relegated the party to permanent minority status.

Right now is when the party has to choose whether its seriously interested in seizing power, or whether it is too comfortable in the minority to actually take risks.
That’s an interesting thought, no? If the Dems have decided it’s better to lose a little than lose big, and fear that staking out bold alternative positions might result in the latter, then they have little hope of winning. A willingness to lose at all in the current political climate guarantees nothing less than the certainly of loss.

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