Monday, September 27, 2010

Democrats Face Skeptics in Rural Areas

From The Wall Street Journal:

WILLISTON, N.D.—Cliff Wehrman has a new Dodge pickup and the remnants of a tan from a Mexican beach vacation.
Associated Press
A student pours red Kool-Aid, left, into a pipe in a poster of Democratic Rep. Earl Pomeroy this month at North Dakota State University in Fargo. The Kool-Aid represents the increase in government debt due to policies allegedly supported by Mr. Pomeroy.
Sluggish economy? Not around here.
In the windswept northwestern corner of North Dakota, an oil boom has pushed the local economy into overdrive. People are pouring in for jobs, with home builders pulling double shifts.
Fat wallets should bode well for incumbents. But Mr. Wehrman, who supported Democratic Rep. Earl Pomeroy in 2008, says he wants the lawmaker gone.
"I'm disgusted with the entire party," said Mr. Wehrman, a 58-year-old local who helps oil companies lease property for drilling. He is unhappy about government bailouts and the stimulus, saying, "Who do they think is going to pay for all this?"
His anger against incumbent Democrats echoes across the rural Midwest. According to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll last month 55% of Midwesterners disapprove of the job President Barack Obama is doing, six percentage points higher than the rest of the U.S. And 66% of rural Americans believe the country is on the wrong track, five points more than U.S. voters as a whole.
Democratic House incumbents in several sparsely populated Midwestern districts are fighting those headwinds. Among them: Stephanie Herseth Sandlin in South Dakota; Joe Donnelly and Baron Hill in Indiana (emphasis mine); Debbie Halvorson in Illinois; Leonard Boswell in Iowa; John Boccieri in Ohio and Ike Skelton in Missouri.
Read it all and see if your Democrat friends agree.-SP

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