The Democrats are getting ready to chew off their own arms.
In the next two weeks, Democratic leaders will review new polls and other data that show whether vulnerable incumbents have a path to victory. If not, the party is poised to redirect money to concentrate on trying to protect up to two dozen lawmakers who appear to be in the strongest position to fend off their challengers.
Oh, how Dawinian are the compassionate ones. They empathise, it turns out, with just one thing - Power!
A national campaign trumpeting Democratic accomplishments on health care, education and Wall Street regulation has given way to a race-by-race defensive strategy. Democratic incumbents are moving to aggressively define their Republican opponents and individualize races in an effort to inoculate themselves from the national mood.
If you're not looking like a winner to the ruthless ones, do you think it's going to do you any good that the reason you're in this situation is because you supported leadership to vote for things like ObamaCare?
While Democrats have all but given up hope that the political or economic climate will improve substantially before the election, they are not conceding control of the House. Several party leaders and strategists privately acknowledge that about 20 seats are already probably lost, but they believe they can build a fire wall around seats in the Northeast and in other pockets across the country where Republicans have nominated untested candidates.
Hope and Change has evolved quickly into kill or be killed.
To hold the line against Republicans, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, issued an urgent plea for members in safe districts to help their endangered colleagues by contributing money. She called out to Democrats who were delinquent on paying their party dues and instructed members with no re-election worries to tap into a combined $218 million from their campaign accounts to help save their majority.
"We need to know your commitment," Pelosi wrote to lawmakers last week in a private letter, demanding that they call her within 72 hours to explain how they plan to help.
There's alot of unemployment out there, and Pelosi is not eager to start collecting her 99 weeks.