Democrats capture another House seat, Republicans worry

May 14, 2008

rtr1yqkf.jpgWASHINGTON – Democrats captured another Republican seat in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday night during a special election in Mississippi, the third such victory this election cycle.

Yet another loss will likely strike fear in the hearts of many Republicans who are worried that it could have even bigger ramifications this November as they try to claw their way back to a majority.

In the race to represent northern Mississippi, Republican Greg Davis lost to Travis Childers despite a last-minute effort by Vice President Dick Cheney to woo voters at a campaign fundraiser for Davis on Monday. Childers will have to run again in November, this time for a full two-year term.

He will fill a seat vacated by Rep. Roger Wicker who was appointed to fill Sen. Trent Lott’s seat and expands the Democratic House majority to 236-199.

“His victory has sent a thunderbolt across America tonight,” said Rep. Chris Van Hollen, a Maryland Democrat who is chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Van Hollen also tried to broaden the meaning of the victory, arguing it was not only a setback for House Republicans but also “the Bush administration’s misguided policies and John McCain’s campaign for a third Bush term,” referring to the presumed Republican presidential nominee.

And a top House Republican appeared similarly grim in his assessment of the loss.

“The results … should serve as a wake-up call to Republican candidates nationwide,” said House Republican Leader John Boehner, an Ohio Republican. “As I’ve said before, this is a change election, and if we want Americans to vote for us we have to convince them that we can fix Washington.”

Earlier this year, Democrats won the Illinois seat held by the previous Republican House Speaker, Dennis Hastert, and captured the Louisiana seat held by departing Republican Richard Baker.

Are voters sending Republicans a message or are these isolated victories for Democrats?

Click here for more Reuters 2008 campaign coverage.

– Photo credit: Reuters/Jim Young (Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi takes the podium for the first time in January in her new position)


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

The Republican/Conservative Party has lost its way. The Neo cons have perverted Constitutional Government, and the political compass of the Declaration of Independence, and embraced the Socialist Democratic Liberal Party. NeoCons now embrace, in a conservative manner – but of course, Big Government, european alliance, european Central Bank and Central Economic Planning, as the “Conservative” platform! At least the socialist democrat liberals openly have no shame, but the neo con conservative republicans lie and have no shame. Its time to cast the Republican Party upon the dung heap of history together with the Whig Party they replaced. Its time for a New Conservative Party that shall return American to Jeffersonian/Calhoun democracy.

Posted by moshe | Report as abusive

I think in the end it again comes down to you reap what you sow. Fearful leader AND his party have a legacy of Death, Debt and Deceit. People are not all stupid

Posted by billtmore | Report as abusive

“Its time for a New Conservative Party that shall return American to Jeffersonian/Calhoun democracy.”

Yes, all 12% of you.

President George Bush is The Conservative Candidate. He did everything the ideologues at Heritage, AEI and the WSJ editorial page told him to.

The problem is that the ideas that have guided the right-wing conservatives are empirically terrible, and the current state of our country is proof.

The conservatives reply: “Conservatism cannot fail! It can only be failed!”

And the rest of the populace lets out a long sigh…

Posted by jvill | Report as abusive

That is GREAT NEWS! Let’s take all of them down!
They have led the country where it is now – with a greatly indebted to China,war weary, so divided, and witnessing another great depression.
The only party which can bring back American to the top the GREAT DEMOCRATIC PARTY.
Its time we voted the rest of those neocons out. Democrats everywhere keep up the grass roots work – its working!
Thank you all Democrats in Louisiana, Illinois and Mississippi for the GREAT JOB!

Posted by Julius | Report as abusive

I have to say, thank goodness for liberal thinking. It’s going to turn this country around. All the Rep. Conservatives are doing is sitting around on their butts waiting for the stock market to go back up. Then what? McCain God rest him if he wins the general election will be the modernized Herbert Hoover. Let’s get with the PROGRAM here. I mean everyone is just sitting around on their asses waiting for something to change, WE NEED ANOTHER FDR. There hasn’t been a republican that did a damn thing since Reagan.
It’s time for some change people, conservatives out, liberals in-even if that means Obama or Clinton. I’m ok as long as it means no more Bushes in the Whitehouse.

I mean, the Conservatives kept us in nam since oh yeah 1936, and did we ever leave? no. We’ve been in Iraq since the early 80s. They just got pissed at our imperialistic archaic goals. Go figure. America needs to go back to democracy..



forget politics whatever happened to government?!

Posted by Sarah | Report as abusive