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December 01, 2008


I offer two simple points as a rejoinder to your commentary:

1. Actually, Tim Walz’s 2006 victory was NOT a surprise, at least to this smart blogger. I projected his victory (as well as Pawlenty’s) on my blog from all those many, many miles away from the 1st CD back in 2006: http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cspg/smartpolitics/2006/11/minnesota_poll_roundup_and_sma.php

2. Secondly, when you flip my language to list all of the DFL victories state- and district-wide since 2006, you are suggesting it is comparable in newsworthiness in kind, and thus omitting the most obvious point (and subheading to my “Minnesota Is Not Massachusetts” blog entry): the national (regional and local) Democratic wave in 2006 and 2008.

This wave propelled a Democratic president into office, 12+ Democratic pick-ups in the U.S. Senate, 50+ Democratic pick-ups in the U.S. House, and several Democratic takeovers of state legislative chambers nationwide. The Democratic wave was also felt regionally with 4 pick-ups in the U.S. House (2 in Iowa, 1 in Wisconsin, and the none-too-surprising Walz victory in Minnesota) and Democratic takeovers of the Iowa House, Wisconsin Senate, Wisconsin Assembly, and Minnesota House.

With that political backdrop, and the 21 seats gained by the DFL during the Minnesota House the last two election cycles, it should not be surprising the DFL held its cumulative 9 Congressional seats in 2006 and 2008 (and picked up 1 in '06), nor that it retained its U.S. Senate seat in 2006. What is noteworthy, and should be frustrating to DFLers, is that the DFL did not accomplish more, given the political climate nationally and in Minnesota.

The reason I was silent about Walz’s 2008 win is the same reason I was silent about Keith Ellison’s win (and Collin Peterson’s, and James Oberstar’s, and Betty McCollum’s) – who would have thought there would be a different outcome in any of those races?

Ollie Ox replies: Never have so many pixels perished in order clue livestock to the simple points that illustrate an author's brilliance, the brightest star to grace a manger since Bethlehem.

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