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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

GET READY FOR THE 2014 MID-TERM ELECTIONS

BRYCE ON POLITICS

- Next week, there are many decisions to be made. Will you participate?

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Here it finally comes, with less than a week to go. I am, of course, talking about the American Mid-Term elections on November 4th. The question is; will you be an active voter or sit on the sidelines? The Mid-Terms usually draw fewer voters than presidential election years. Republicans normally rally during these elections, which is why Democrats are nervous about the 2014 election outcome.

Back in June, I wrote a column entitled, "How Obama is undermining Democrats," whereby I discussed how the president's decisions regarding his bungling of foreign affairs ("leading from behind"), the terrorist exchange, and his War on Energy, was making it difficult for his party to maintain control of the Senate. Now, four months later, with his shaky policies regarding ISIS, Ebola, and immigration, President Obama continues to lose the trust not only of the American people but his own party as well. Polls show his approval ratings continue to decline.

Just about every poll gives an edge to the Republicans to reclaim the Senate, but it certainly is not a slam dunk. According to RealClearPolitics (RCP), an independent news organization which maintains an up-to-date pulse of elections, projections show 46 Senate seats controlled by Democrats, and 45 for the GOP, leaving 9 seats as toss-ups. These nine seats represent the shift of power. Of these, the GOP will likely win in Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, and Louisiana (5 seats). The others are too close to call, but the Republicans currently have an edge in Iowa, Kansas, and North Carolina (3 seats). As long as the GOP candidates do not make a misstep, and the president continues to lose the trust of the people, there should be no reason why the Republicans cannot take the Senate.
The Republicans will also maintain control over the House of Representatives. Currently there are 188 seats controlled by the Democrats and 230 by the GOP, leaving 17 toss-up seats. Even if the Democrats were to win all 17 seats, which is unlikely, they still wouldn't have enough seats to reclaim the House.

What does all of this mean to our federal government? A transition in the Senate to the Republicans would obviously mean a change in power. Senate Majority leader Harry Reid would no longer be controlling the agenda. Over the last two years, the Republican controlled House produced over 300 pieces of legislation for review by the Senate, some partisan, some non-partisan. Nonetheless, Sen. Reid blocked the legislation from being read and acted on, thereby essentially killing it. By removing the Reid logjam, much more legislation will be acted upon in the Senate and go to the president for his signature.

In terms of gubernatorial races, the Democrats have 15 states, the Republicans have 21, leaving 14 toss-up states. Of these, Arizona, Georgia, and Michigan will likely go Republican, Rhode Island will go Democratic, and the rest are virtual dead heats. In the end, Republicans will likely have more states than the Democrats.

Some will say, "So, it sounds like the decisions have already been made for us; why should we bother to vote?" First, we have to remember the data expressed here is based on polls only. They may be accurate, then again the polls have been known to be wrong before. Second, it is your duty as an American citizen to vote. It is the one act we are allowed to influence the direction of our government. If you cannot put forth the effort to perform this simple act, you do not have the right to criticize the government.

Then again, there are people who are not qualified to vote; who have no idea how the government is organized or works, what the issues are, or know the people running. These are the people the media pounces on with their advertising and spin. So, let me amend my argument; If you are cognizant of how government works, and you know what the issues are and who the people are, then, Yes, there is no excuse for you not to vote. Everyone else should just stay home.

Keep the Faith!

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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim's columns, see:   timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2014 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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