It’s all about the POTUS
Reid Wilson sums up the Democrats’ problem for this election season:
[…] West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin (D) faces a more difficult race for the state’s open Senate seat than he once contemplated. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee purchased television time on Manchin’s behalf, even though most surveys peg his approval rating north of 60 percent. But Manchin finds himself running neck and neck with businessman John Raese, who took just 34 percent of the vote when he ran for the seat in 2006.
Manchin’s problems are manifest in one individual: President Obama. Obama took just 43 percent of the vote in West Virginia in 2008, and his popularity has only slid further. Republicans are using the same playbook against Manchin as they are against other Democrats, labeling him an Obama rubber stamp.
In a coal state that fears cap-and-trade legislation as a threat to an already teetering economy, that label is deadly. Manchin, who won re-election in 2008 with more than 70 percent of the vote, suddenly finds himself in serious jeopardy as Republicans build rhetorical bridges between him and the national Democratic Party. If those associations can hurt the popular Manchin, they can hurt lesser-known House members running their first re-election campaigns.
In 2008, every politician in the Democratic party, up and down every ticket were elbowing each other to jump on Obama’s Hope and Change Express.
For the 2010 midterms anyway, that train has derailed.