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Southern Exposure: Dixie goes all Republican
The Weekly Standard ^ | The August 20, 2012 Issue | Fred Barnes

Posted on 08/11/2012 11:28:26 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

In 2010, the Alabama legislature went Republican for the first time in 136 years. In 2011, Republicans won the Mississippi statehouse and Louisiana’s legislature—for both, a first since Reconstruction. That leaves Arkansas as the Holdout State.

But Arkansas is wobbling. If its legislature falls to Republicans this year—the odds are 50-50 or better—all 11 states of the old Confederacy will be in GOP hands. And the political current that is transforming the South from a Democratic bastion into the bedrock of Republican strength nationally will be nearly complete.

In Arkansas, the ever-so-slow Republican trend accelerated in 2010. Republicans not only increased their state legislative seats by 50 percent, they also won two open U.S. House seats previously held by Democrats. This November, the one Democratic seat left (of the state’s four) is all but certain to be captured by Republican Tom Cotton, an Iraq war veteran.

And in 2014, Democratic senator Mark Pryor is sure to face a stiff Republican challenge. Thus, it was no coincidence that Pryor was the lone Senate Democrat to vote with Republicans in July to extend all the Bush tax cuts. He also voted twice with Democrats to limit the tax cuts to individuals earning less than $200,000 annually.

Beyond Arkansas, there’s more trouble for Democrats. Republicans, aided by adroit redistricting, are favored to oust the only white Democratic House member, John Barrow of Georgia, in the Deep South.

And in North Carolina, Democrats could lose as many as four House seats. Artful reapportionment by the newly elected Republican legislature (after 116 years of Democratic control) forced two Democratic House members to retire and left two others in Republican-tilting districts.

The rise of Republicans marks the end of white Democrats as the leading political force in the South. This is historic. For 125 years, white Democrats controlled statehouses across most of the region. In Washington, their role was pivotal because they chaired the most important Senate and House committees for decades. Nationally, since many of them were conservatives, they diluted the influence of the Democratic party’s dominant liberal wing.

Republicans made significant gains in the 1980 and 1994 landslides. But 2010 was different. Two things happened: State elections were nationalized, and white moderates joined conservatives in overwhelmingly voting for Republican House candidates. Exit polls showed a mere 17 percent of Southern whites identified as Democrats, 33 percent as Republicans. Whites voted 3-1 for Republicans.

No longer could white Democrats, whether conservatives or moderates, win elections by disassociating themselves from the national party. “The image of the state party became the image of the national party,” says Merle Black of Emory University. Black and his brother Earl are the leading historians of modern Southern politics.

“The Obama-Pelosi Democratic party just does not sell with many white Southerners,” Black says. In the Deep South, “the Democratic party has been reduced to African Americans, plus white liberals. That’s not close to a majority.”

Four of the six most conservative Democrats in the House lost in 2010. They had voted against Obamacare and the cap and trade energy bill. That didn’t save them.

In central Georgia, Democrat Jim Marshall, a four-term House member, was hawkish on defense. He was backed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He outspent his Republican opponent, Austin Scott. But Scott won, 53 percent to 47 percent.

In Alabama, Bobby Bright, elected in 2008, had bucked his party’s leadership more than any other House Democrat. He, too, outspent his Republican opponent, Martha Roby, a 34-year-old Montgomery city council member. Bright had been a popular mayor of Montgomery, but he lost, 51 percent to 49 percent.

That one-term Democrat Travis Childers lost to Alan Nunnelee in Republican-leaning northern Mississippi was not a surprise. But the defeat of Democrat Gene Taylor, a 21-year incumbent, was. His seat had been considered one of the safest in the country. He lost to Republican Steven Palazzo, 52 percent to 47 percent.

John Barrow, however, survived the Republican wave in 2010. He easily won reelection, 57 percent to 43 percent, even after statehouse Republicans had taken Athens, his hometown, out of the district, forcing him to move to Savannah.

Republicans took another bite out of Barrow’s district, based on the 2010 census, by removing Savannah, forcing him to move again, to Augusta. In 2008, Barack Obama won 55 percent of the vote in the old district. In the new one, he would have gotten 45 percent. According to the Cook Political Report, the district changed from slightly Democratic (“D+1”) to strongly Republican (“R+10”).

Barrow is a shrewd candidate. In 2011, rather than vote for Nancy Pelosi as House minority leader, he voted for John Lewis, the African-American Democrat from Atlanta. (The district is one-third black.) But Republicans are determined to defeat him, and he’s likely to be outspent.

Arkansas still has a Democratic governor, Mike Beebe, but he’s term-limited (leaving in 2014) and unable to stem the Republican tide as Bill Clinton did. “As recently as three or four years ago, Arkansas wholly separated in-state politics from national politics,” Arkansas Democrat-Gazette columnist John Brummett wrote in July. “It found a way to reject national Democratic party liberalism while not assigning its local Democratic politicians any complicity.”

It was Obama, Brummett told me, “who tipped Arkansas to nationalized elections.” How? “By beating Hillary and paying no attention to Arkansas and not mobilizing our black vote and seeming a remote liberal.” Now there’s no turning back.

For the 2012 election, Bill Clinton will address the Democratic National Convention next month. However, “Arkansas voters are perfectly capable of listening to Clinton extol Obama and then continuing to fear and despise Obama,” Brummett says. And continuing to remake Arkansas as the last Southern state to turn Republican.

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Front Page News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 2012; christianvote; democrats; dixie; elections; gop; realignment; republicans; southerndems
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To: mozarky2

Was he writing for them or was he the janitor?

21 posted on 08/11/2012 2:42:29 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass.)
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22 posted on 08/11/2012 3:04:59 PM PDT by RedMDer (
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To: manc
mine is fying outsdie and on my vehicles and if those fro the north don’t like it then they can piss off

The "new" (he's only been here a dozen years, the rest of us have been here 25 years or more) neighbor across the street is from Nashua, NH. His car has one of those idiotic "Coexist" bumper stickers and he already has his Obama/2012 sticker displayed in its rear window. He's a stereotypical Yankee liberal in all aspects. He hates Texas and the South and is here only because his job in Boston transferred most of its workforce here to North Texas.

In contrast, my next door neighbor is a proud unreconstructed Confederate (originally from Georgia) and a Tea Party supporter, as am I. To get the goat of that leftist, ultra-PC Yankee, we always make a point to plant little Rebel flags by our sidewalks on Martin Marxist Luther King Jr's birthday. That really gets him fuming and we enjoy seeing him become totally unhinged. And you ought to see (and hear) what we do on Earth Day to annoy him!

23 posted on 08/11/2012 4:04:31 PM PDT by re_nortex (DP...that's what I like about Texas.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I can’t resist this:

His name was John, a traditional Cracker; he was from
Apopka, Florida….. And he needed a loan, So… He walked into a bank in New York City and asked for the loan Officer.

He told the loan officer that he was going to Paris for an International redneck festival for two weeks and needed to borrow $5,000 and that he was not a depositor of the bank. The bank officer told him that the bank would need some form of security for the loan, so the Redneck handed over the keys to a new Ferrari. The car was parked on the street in front of the bank.

The Redneck produced the title and everything checked out. The loan officer agreed to hold the car as collateral for the loan and apologized for having to charge 12% interest.

Later, the bank’s president and its officers all enjoyed a good laugh at the Redneck from the South for using a $250,000 Ferrari as collateral for a $5,000 loan. An employee of the bank then drove the Ferrari into the bank’s private underground garage and parked it.

Two weeks later, the Redneck returned, repaid the $5,000 and the interest of $23.07.

The loan officer said, “Sir, we are very happy to have had your business, and this transaction has worked out very nicely, but we are a little puzzled. While you were away, we checked you out on Dunn & Bradstreet and found that you are a Distinguished Alumni from Ole Miss University, a highly sophisticated investor and Multi-Millionaire with real estate and financial interests all over the world. Your investments include a large number of wind turbines around Sweetwater, Texas. What puzzles us is, why would you bother to borrow $5,000?”

The good ‘ole boy replied, “Where else in New York City can I park my car for two weeks for only $23.07 and expect it to be there when I return?”

His name was John…. He is a “cracker”

Keep an eye on us southern boys! Just because we talk funny does not mean we are stupid.

Some have probably heard this using a blonde...still funny.

24 posted on 08/11/2012 4:08:28 PM PDT by Puckster
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To: Joe Boucher

“Virginia took a hell of a beating last time that happened.”

You need to consider that Joshua Chamblain left Maine over 100 years ago and he ain’t coming back.

The Northeast can only live on past achievements for so long.

If I had to bet on another north v south engagement, my best guess is that the Kennedys in Hyannis would crap in their pants.

Cheers, FRiend

25 posted on 08/11/2012 5:17:51 PM PDT by sergeantdave
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To: re_nortex

I have kids which have gone around the neighborhood putting little flags onto poles etc.

Never understood as to why people move to an area and then complain about the area they moved to and then wanting it to look like the hell hole they left.

I have a beautiful front garden and there flies the confederate flag.
I have decent looking vehicles and the flag flies on them.

Thankfully I live in one of the most republican counties in the state of FL.

The other week I was looking around on the internet and saw a real estate site for my town.
I saw that the estate agent wrote that this county was one of the most Dem counties in FL.

I called him up and pretended to be from eleswhere and was looking for a home no more than half a million.

The agent gets all chatty on the phone until I say “it looks like an nice area and hopefully I can get south to get away from all these liberals”

The agent then quickly says “well this county is very Democratic and maybe you might want to think again’

I replied “funny you say that because ocording to the census and other sites St Johns county goes nearly 70% at the elections and they do not have any Dems in office”

The agent was duh duh duh still trying to get around the facts and cling to his lie.

Seems like so many on the left they lie and cheat and sounds this guy is trying to recruit his liberal pals to this area

26 posted on 08/11/2012 5:26:34 PM PDT by manc (Marriage =1 man + 1 woman,when they say marriage equality then they should support polygamy)
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To: spawn44
This ain't your daddy's democrat party.

That is indeed true but one wonders if a lot of the oldtimers realize it. I know a guy (my gunsmith) whose father still thinks that things are the same and that the Democrat Party is what it always was. And he resists being educated on the matter.

27 posted on 08/11/2012 5:30:33 PM PDT by OldPossum
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To: Jim Robinson
The South shall rise again!

It won't have to, if we take the much more wholesome step of amputating New England and New York City. They started all the trouble in the first place.

28 posted on 08/11/2012 5:34:08 PM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: manc
Had one poster last night tell me VA and FL are not southern...

In the FWIW's department, when I was growing up and attending school in Alabama we never thought of Florida as a southern state. We thought it was what it was: a gathering spot for Yankee retirees. Hasn't changed, either.

Given the increased numbers of Northerners who are moving into northern Virginia (I understand that Fairfax County--adjacent to Washington--has over a million residents now), Virginia is becoming less and less of a Southern state.

29 posted on 08/11/2012 5:40:01 PM PDT by OldPossum
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To: OldPossum

ah see, northern FL is still the old south.

30 posted on 08/11/2012 5:49:48 PM PDT by manc (Marriage =1 man + 1 woman,when they say marriage equality then they should support polygamy)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Republicans freed the slaves from Democrats in the South.

Perhaps in this generation they can free people of all races from dependence upon the federal government shaped (mostly) by Democrats.

31 posted on 08/11/2012 6:15:41 PM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: re_nortex

And if The Great Republic of Texas was returned to it’s original boundary as the Texians saw it, New Mexico and Colorado would be a non-issue.

Long live the Free State of Texas.

32 posted on 08/11/2012 6:45:23 PM PDT by eartick (Been to the line in the sand and liked it)
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To: manc

Yep. The only state where the farther north you go, the farther south you get.

33 posted on 08/11/2012 6:50:48 PM PDT by Eagle Bomba
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To: 2ndDivisionVet


34 posted on 08/11/2012 6:53:10 PM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose of a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
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To: SoFloFreeper; hosepipe; wardaddy
Other "Republicans": Martin Marxist Luther King, Junior uttered these words about the greatest President of the last 100 years, Ronald Wilson Reagan:

"When a Hollywood performer, lacking distinction even as an actor, can become a leading war hawk candidate for the presidency, only the irrationalities induced by war psychosis can explain such a turn of events."

No sale. MLK may have had an (R) next to his name but he was no Conservative by any stretch of its definition.

35 posted on 08/11/2012 6:57:24 PM PDT by re_nortex (DP...that's what I like about Texas.)
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To: All

It’s obvious these politicians will do anything to get re-elected. They’ll turn on a dime and give you nine cents change. They don’t give a damn about this country. They only want to cash in.

Ross Perot, love him or hate him, once said the goal is
“To have a government where the elected, appointed, and career officials come to serve and not to cash in.” We’ve yet to find them.

36 posted on 08/11/2012 6:57:56 PM PDT by Terry Mross (To my kin & former friends: Don't contact me if you still love obama- We got nothing to talk about)
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To: re_nortex

Hopefully the democrats will not Marxist Luther King-ize Zero...
then to Biden-ize the Presidency..

37 posted on 08/11/2012 7:06:24 PM PDT by hosepipe (This propaganda has been edited to include some fully orbed hyperbole..)
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To: Eagle Bomba

we have a saying here in north FL.

The north is the south and south is the north.

From Flagler county upwards is the old south, I live in St Augustine St Johns cunty which is all republican in leadership, no Dems and always goes nearly 70% republican

38 posted on 08/11/2012 7:28:12 PM PDT by manc (Marriage =1 man + 1 woman,when they say marriage equality then they should support polygamy)
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To: ilovesarah2012

Nice thought. I’m ready.

39 posted on 08/11/2012 7:29:51 PM PDT by ImpBill ("America, where are you now?" - Little "r" republican!)
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To: re_nortex

Hell Yea.

MLK...thanks anyhow

amazing how some freepers and Beck lap it up though

some here even applaud X

40 posted on 08/11/2012 7:49:54 PM PDT by wardaddy (this white hair don't cover up my redneck......)
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