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The Defending Majority

The GOP House campaign committee hastily called an off-camera briefing for reporters yesterday, most likely because of the new Gallup survey showing some of the best polling news the party has seen for some time, and committee chair Tom Reynolds guaranteed to reporters that Republicans will hold onto control of the House. "We will be in the majority the next Congress. You can count on that." 

The forthcoming New York Times magazine, meanwhile, profiles Republican National Committee chair Ken Mehlman and examines how, these days, "the lofty ideals and bold ambitions of Mehlman and [Karl] Rove" to grow the Republican party among new voting blocs "often seem in direct conflict with the short-term survival instincts of Republicans who want nothing more than to get past the next election.  House Republicans sabotaged Bush's immigration plan, ignoring Mehlman's warnings about the damage that an enforcement-only immigration bill could do to the party's long-term growth among Hispanic voters...  He spent much of July trying to manage the fallout among black leaders after House conservatives delayed a routine extension of the Voting Rights Act."  And Jewish activists are "fearful that the White House's Iraq policy had empowered Iran."  The profile also sets up the RNC's "72-hour" get-out-the-vote machine as the "fire wall" against serious losses.