WASHINGTON - Republicans had a run of bad luck last week that could have repercussions for the GOP come Election Day, The Washington Post said Sunday.
The Post reported that the Republicans' run of bad news began with the loss of the congressional seat held for two decades by former House speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill. Then the GOP lost what were seen as formidable challengers to sitting Democratic senators, and failed to field anyone to oppose the re-election bid of Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark.
Then there was the news that the former treasurer of the National Republican Congressional Committee had allegedly embezzled as much as $1 million from the already cash-strapped organization.
Political observers said when a Democrat won Hastert's former seat it was a sign of worse things to come.
"It's no mystery," said Rep. Thomas M. Davis III, R-Va. "You have a very unhappy electorate, which is no surprise, with oil at $108 a barrel, stocks down a few thousand points, a war in Iraq with no end in sight and a president who is still very, very unpopular. He's just killed the Republican brand."
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