NOTE: This column, which draws heavily on a piece posted last week, is published here to serve as the electronic version of today’s AJC column and to allow newspaper readers to comment if the wish.
The 2010 midterms were a disaster for Democrats almost everywhere, but the carnage was particularly high here in the South.
Take Georgia. Every Democrat running statewide lost by double digits, and Republicans won historic margins in both the state House and Senate. The humiliation got even worse after the election, when nine legislators elected as Democrats — including the Democratic House caucus chair — switched parties.
The performance was so dismal that Mark Schmitt, executive editor of the liberal American Prospect magazine in Washington, believes the Democrats should write off the South as a lost cause.
“It’s not a tough call,” Schmitt wrote last week. “… The divorce is final. And largely for the good, as congressional Democrats will no longer have to twist their policies