Tomorrow, Democrats officially kick off their convention in Charlotte, NC. On Thursday, President Obama will ascend the stage at Bank of America stadium and try to rekindle the enthusiasm and fervor that greeted his acceptance speech in Denver in 2008. Then, Democrat officials worried about having to turn people away from the speech. Today, they worry about simply filling the seats. And no wonder; the Democrat party has shrunk dramatically during Obama’s term in office.
Obama’s policies haven’t helped many Americans. But, they have been an absolute bonanza to one particular group of job-seekers: Republican candidates. Not since Ronald Reagan has any President done more to build up a thriving and energetic GOP.
Let’s review the carnage inflicted on the Democrat party since Obama took office.
- In Jan. 2009, there were 56 Democrats in the U.S. Senate. (With Democrat caucusing Independents and a party switch, this figure hit 60 early in Obama’s term) Today, there are 51 with the very real prospect of fewer come November.
- In the House, Democrats controlled the chamber with 257 seats. Today they have just over 190.
- In the states, Democrats controlled both chambers of the legislature in 27 states. The GOP controlled just 14. (The rest were split-control, with each party controlling one chamber.) Today, the situation is completely reversed, with GOP controlling 27 states to the Democrats 15. There are more GOP state legislators today than at any time since 1928.
- Democrats controlled the Governor’s mansion in 29 states. Today, they hold the Governor’s office in only 20 states, and will likely lose more this November.
But, it isn’t just Democrat office-holders who are gone. Rank-and-file Democrats have disappeared since Obama took office. When Obama won the Presidency, 41% of voters identified themselves as Democrats. Today, just 33% of voters identify as Democrats. Moreover, the number who identify as Republican is at an all time high of 37.6%.
Last month, the liberal group Third Way looked at party registrations in eight battleground states. In just those eight states, Democrats lost 800,000 voters from their rolls since Obama took office. Democrat voter registrations in those eight states are down more than five percentage points.
Virtually every poll looking at the Presidential race is assuming a partisan turnout very similar to 2008. That isn’t going to happen. Too many Americans have simply left the Democrat party.