Where’s the Wave?

Much has been made of the pending anti-incumbent wave coming to a ballot box near you.  However, to date, there is has been far more of a small splash than there has been a wave.

As CNN notes:

Despite all the calls for new blood in Washington and for Americans to dismiss “career politicians,” thus far primary voters mostly have chosen established party insiders over farmers, businessmen and candidates from outside the political realm.

And far more incumbents have survived than have been toppled.

“The idea that there’s this huge anti-incumbent wave in the election is considerably exaggerated,” said Emory University political science professor Alan Abramowitz.

Indeed, to buttress a point I have made before:

Abramowitz believes all four of the incumbents ousted so far are special cases, with two party switchers (Sen. Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania, Rep. Parker Griffith in Alabama), one facing corruption charges (Rep. Alan Mollohan in West Virginia) and one losing at a closed-vote party convention (Sen. Bob Bennett in Utah).

Now, granted, we are still early in the game insofar as there a lot of primaries left and the real test will be in November.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2010, US Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter