Longtime readers will remember how much time we spent discussing the transformation of Southern politics in 2010 and 2011.
OD spent an incredible amount of time arguing that racial attitudes were hardening in the Deep South and that this was reflected in the reconstruction of the “Solid South.”
In 2011, Republicans took the Mississippi House and the Virginia Senate, thus capturing control of both houses of the state legislature.
Arkansas is the next domino to fall:
But the state has never been part of his re-election strategy. So the question is, what kind of damage could Obama’s performance in November do to Democrats statewide?
Arkansas is the last Southern state remaining where Democrats have held onto their traditional majorities in the Legislature. But Republicans are now within striking distance there as well — thanks, in part, to Obama.
“Republicans won a whole bunch of legislative seats they had never competed in before” in 2010, says Roby Brock, editor of TalkBusiness.net, which conducted the recent 4th District poll. “A lot of that was an anti-Obama vote they took out on people who were on the ballot as a whole.”
With Obama on the ballot himself this fall, will Arkansans be satisfied voting against him, or will they take their feelings out on Democrats in general?
Because of state law requiring redrawn state Senate districts after each U.S. census, Arkansas voters will select the entire state Legislature on Nov. 6 — all 100 House seats and all 35 Senate seats.
Note: Republicans now control the state legislatures in the rest of the 11 ex-Confederate states.