Democrats' Dixie debacles
The Democratic Party seems to be in freefall in the South. (Zell tried to warn them! )
In Georgia, the prospects for Democrats to recapture their former power are bleak, Jim Wooten suggests:
President Bush carried 123 state House districts and [state] 38 Senate districts. State Rep. Jill Chambers of Atlanta is the only Republican who represents a legislative district that John Kerry carried.
As old-line conservative Democrats, such as [former state House Speaker Terry] Coleman or Bill Cummings of Rockmart, retire, their replacements are likely to be Republican. And with the retirement of whites who have represented majority-black districts, such as those in Clayton and the one held by former House Judiciary Committee Chairman Tom Bordeaux of Savannah, who won't seek re-election, successors are likely to be black Democrats.
The next House Democratic caucus will likely be majority black, also a first. Interestingly, too, their numbers in the Legislature are likely to match their numbers in the population.
Democrats cannot retake the House. It would be a great year for them if they hold 78 seats. Nor can they retake the Senate; at best, voting patterns indicate, they could take three seats or at worst, lose one.
After November's election, the realignment will be almost complete.
Go read the whole thing.
In Alabama, meanwhile, former Democratic governor Don Siegelman begins a federal corruption trial May 1, but keeps campaigning to get back his old job:
Former Gov. Don Siegelman is running his race for governor in a way voters have never seen -- trial court by day and campaign by night.Siegelman spent Wednesday through Friday at the federal courthouse in Montgomery for
selection of the jury for his government corruption trial.
Siegelman and the jury return May First for the start of testimony, which attorneys estimate could last four to eight weeks.
Siegelman says every evening you will see us leave this courtroom for a campaign destination point.
He set the pace by having a rally Tuesday night in Birmingham and then driving to Montgomery for the beginning of jury selection Wednesday morning.
Campaign spokesman Chip Hill says Siegelman will make speeches in the evening, hit late-night and early-morning shift changes at plants, and drop by 24-hour department stores when he's not in court each day from nine to five.
Siegelman's criminal case is also affecting Lt. Gov. Lucy Baxley -- his main opponent in the Democratic primary on June Sixth.
Baxley is busy making appearances across the state, but she says she hasn't had much media coverage because reporters have been focused either on Siegelman's legal problems or Republican Gov. Bob Riley's actions with the Legislature and other state business.
"Whatever time was available to cover the governor's race has been filled by the governor and former governor," Baxley says.
Because of the lack of media coverage, Baxley says, "people are saying they are not hearing anything from the Baxley campaign."
Go read the whole thing.
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