How will the Democrats smooth-talk this one away? I don't think they will be able to do it. I think this crisis and the president's lackluster response to it is the rebirth of the old-fashioned suburban Republican. Chris Christie won the governorship in New Jersey because he spent time speaking to the actual problems in the state. Property taxes were pricing people out of the state. He pledged to contain government, and was embraced by voters. I think this is the beginning of something important. Republicans should revive themselves in the Suburbs like they did in the 1970's and 1980's. As far as I know, Christie is a pro-life governor in New Jersey as well, which puts him a few steps ahead of even Whitman and Kean the last two GOP governors in that state. Voters are beginning to see what happens when you let the liberals have unfettered control of your state.
At the national level, the Republicans can make an issue of the Bush tax cuts expiring. The Democrats called them tax cuts for the rich. However, a lot of small businesses got a lot of help from the Bush tax policy. When those incentives are gone, coupled with a massive and punitive health care policy, they will be even less likely to suppport a recovery. When people are losing jobs and living hand to mouth (via handouts from the government), I think the real Americans will stand up. Republicans will be able to go into those suburbs in the north and ask the real question: Are you tired of propping up the failed policies that raise your taxes, and redistribute wealth to people who do not work for it? That will cause them to return to the GOP. They want sanity and we can now give it to them.
Remember America: You may not have liked everything about George W. Bush's administration, but you at least you had a job!