Things looked rosy for the Democrats in January—but amid economic concerns and trouble for party governors, 2010 could be tougher than expected, Politico reports. Midterm elections typically favor the opposition, and “we don’t have the burden of Iraq as we did in 2006 and don’t have the economy on the Republicans’ watch as we had in 2008,” notes a GOP pollster.
Republicans are on top in gubernatorial races in New Jersey and Virginia, polls suggest. Democratic governors in Wisconsin and Massachusetts have approval ratings below 40%. Meanwhile, Republicans have convinced popular candidates to enter races across the country, signaling growing confidence. Still, plenty could yet sway voters, a Democratic consultant cautions: “The question is, six months to a year from now, do they feel that the economy has turned the corner?”