1978 Mid-Terms: Win Some - Lose Some


Continuing a historic look back at various midterm elections, here is a sampling of the midterm election of 1978 from CBS News - November 7-8, 1978.

What's interesting about this particular election is how it's interpreted in retrospect. At the time the Democrats had done very well as the result of high approval ratings of the Carter Presidency and it's indicated in the broadcast of November 8th 1978 and data from the election period substantiates that with a 52% approval rating and 36% disapproval with 12% undecided. However, recent depictions of that election claim it's because Jimmy Carter wasn't that popular and that the Democrats were on the verge of losing to the vast shift to the right America was undergoing that it was a clear defeat for the Democrats. But, by all accounts that appears not to be true. A loss of 15 seats in Congress, but still maintaining a majority, with leadership under "Tip" O'Neil and 277 seats going to the Democrats.

So depending on who you're getting your information from, the 1978 midterms were a screaming defeat, a stunning upset or a mandate to stay the course.

History always runs the risk of being re-written.


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