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Author: Tony Phyrillas
Date:  January 12, 2010

Topic category:  Government/Politics

Republicans can deliver real hope and change in 2010

Taking back control of Congress can reverse the damage Obama and the Democrats have done to this country.

Pollster Scott Rasmussen asks Americans each month to give their opinion on whether the United States is headed in the right direction or the wrong track. His polls were widely reported by the mainstream news media during George W. Bush's last year in office, but the right direction/wrong track numbers get little coverage now that the media's hand-picked candidate occupies the White House.

Nearly 80 percent of Americans told Rasmussen just before the November 2008 election that the country was on the wrong track. That explains why Barack Obama was elected president and Democrats picked up seats in Congress.

Bush has been out of office for 11 months as promises of "hope" and "change" swept the land, but most Americans now believe Barack Obama and Congressional Democrats are taking the country in the wrong direction.

A majority of voters — 62 percent — believe the nation is heading down the wrong track, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey.

Just 32 percent of U.S. voters say the country is heading in the right direction. That's a small gain after two months of decline that culminated in a finding of 29 percent, the lowest number Rasmussen reported since February 2009.

The percentage of voters who feel the country is heading in the right direction remained in the range of 31 percent to 35 percent from July to early November. From late November until the end of 2009, confidence in the country's current course steadily declined, Rasmussen says.

It's no surprise that Democrats suffered embarassing defeats in the New Jersey and Virginia governor races last November. Obama campaigned heavily for the Democrats in both states, but Republicans won decisive victories in what many saw as an early referendum on Obama's agenda of record deficit spending, higher taxes and a government takeover of health care.

Only the most partisan of Democrats can feel good about the midterm Congressional elections. Most pollsters and pundits predict heavy losses for Democrats in both the House and Senate.

You not only have the normal disappointment with a presidential administration, but the Democrats' heavy-handed tactics in ramming through the unpopular health care reform bills will cost Democrats seats in Congress.

There have already been two attacks on U.S. soil by Islamic terrorists during Obama's first year in office — the shootings at Fort Hood in early November and the attempted downing of a Detroit-bound passenger airliner on Christmas Day.

Concerns that Obama is soft on terrorism are starting to resonate with many Americans, even ones who voted for Obama.

With Obama's job approval numbers below 50 percent and poll numbers for Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid consistently below 30 percent, it's no longer a question of whether Democrats will lose seats, it's now a matter of whether Democrats will lose control of Congress.

Most political observers predict Republican gains of 20 to 30 seats in the House, where Democrats have a 262-178 majority and a handful of seats in the Senate, where Democrats have a 60-40 majority.

Some pundits are predicting a historic comeback for the Republican Party. The astute Dick Morris, who helped Bill Clinton win two terms as president, believes Republicans will take back the majority in both the House and Senate.

While publicly downplaying potential losses in Congress, the Obama administration has seen the writing on the wall. Pushing a far-left agenda and breaking numerous campaign promises has alienated independent voters and some Democrats. That's why Obama's job approval numbers have declined rapidly since he took office. Obama's personal popularity remains high, but most Americans do not support his radical policies.

The reason Obama is rushing legislation through Congress and making back-room deals that will cost taxpayers billions of dollars is because he knows his time is running out.

The health care reform bills, negotiated in secret without any Republican input, barely passed the House and only won Senate approval after key Senators were bribed by Majority Leader Reid at the prompting of the Obama White House.

And don't forget that the defection of Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter to the Democratic Party is the only reason health care passed in the Senate. Specter is probably in his last year in the Senate, facing a tough primary challenger (Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak) in May and an even tougher Republican opponent (former Congressman Pat Toomey) in November.

Without the 60-vote majority in the Senate, Democrats are done and Obama will end up a lame duck in his last two years in office.

Tony Phyrillas
http://tonyphyrillas.blogspot.com (Columnist)

Biography - Tony Phyrillas

Tony Phyrillas is a leading conservative political columnist and blogger based in Pennsylvania. He is a veteran journalist with 25 years experience as a reporter, editor and columnist for several newspapers. Phyrillas received recognition for column writing in 2010 from the Associated Press Managing Editors, in 2007 from Suburban Newspapers of America and in 2006 from the Society of Professional Journalists, Keystone Chapter. A graduate of Penn State University, Phyrillas is the city editor and political columnist for The Mercury, a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning daily newspaper in Pottstown, Pa. In addition to The Mercury website (www.pottsmerc.com), his columns are featured on more than a dozen political websites and blogs. Phyrillas is a frequent guest (and occasional host) on talk radio and has been a panelist on the "Journalists Roundtable" public affairs TV program on the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN). Phyrillas was named one of the '10 Leading Greek-American Bloggers in the World' in 2007 by Odyssey: The World of Greece magazine. BlogNetNews.com ranked Phyrillas the Most Influential Political Blogger in Pennsylvania for three consecutive years (2007-2010). You can follow Phyrillas on Twitter @TonyPhyrillas

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