Susan J. Demas: Why Republicans have lost their moderates, but Democrats haven't

Long before the Tea Party existed, I had a ringside seat into the GOP's right-wing lurch.

It was the sweltering summer of 2006, and a sleepy Michigan congressional district was a test case for the conservative Republican cause.

The MI-7 was a solidly Republican swath of south-central Michigan, including industrial Jackson, three socially conservative border counties and moderate Lansing and Ann Arbor suburbs.

It was represented by freshman Joe Schwarz (R-Battle Creek), who had an absurdly impressive resumé: Harvard-trained surgeon, Vietnam veteran and CIA spy (he taught Indonesian President Suharto English, for God's sake).

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Susan J. Demas: Angry undecided voters, not mythical moderates, will decide 2014 election

Undecided voters are mad as hell, and they're not going to take it anymore.

A variation of that line was, of course, immortalized by a rumpled newsman played by William Holden in the 1976 classic satire of American media, "Network."

Now as we're less than two weeks away from the 2014 election, anxiety reigns, and swing voters are frustrated. They've been vexed by Obamacare, then ISIS, and now Ebola.

This is bad news for Democrats, as the party that holds the White House usually gets thumped in the sixth year of a president's term. It's certainly looking like the Republicans will take the U.S. Senate.

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