This is a rush transcript from "The Journal Editorial Report," September 18, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
PAUL GIGOT, FOX HOST: This week on the "Journal Editorial Report," a stunning upset in Delaware has some Democrats celebrating. But is that voter uprising headed straight for them?
And it's Democrat versus Democrat on Capitol Hill as more of the rank-and-file break with party leaders over plans to raise taxes on upper incomes.
Plus, Chris Christie's pension fight. The unions are howling after New Jersey's governor unveils his plans to save a system that is only $46 billion in the red.
Welcome to the "Journal Editorial Report." I'm Paul Gigot.
Tea Party Candidate Christine O'Donnell's stunning victory Tuesday over long-time Republican Congressman Mike Castle has many on the left celebrating and crowing about a Republican civil war. Well, Democrats may keep that Senate seat as a result, but is the wave of voter anger that swept Castle out now headed right toward them?
Joining the panel this week, Wall Street Journal columnist and deputy editor, Dan Henninger; Washington columnist, Kim Strassel; and senior economics writer Steve Moore.
So, Kim, this week, I got an e-mail from John Kerry, one of the mass Democratic e-mails, basically doing cartwheels — almost doing cartwheels on my computer screen, celebrating the result in Delaware. Should they be that happy?
KIM STRASSEL, WASHINGTON COLUMNIST: I don't think they should because this was the last primary and, right now, all the Republicans that might get swept out have been swept out, and the only people left to be swept out are Democrats this fall. And a lot of the things that were driving the anger in Delaware that led to Mike Castle's loss there had to do with the things that Democrats have got problems on too. I mean, he had a record. Castle had a record. People felt he wasn't good enough on fiscal responsibility. He voted for cap-and-trade. These are the hallmarks of the Democratic Party. And these voters are now coming to get them.
GIGOT: Steve, but does Christine O'Donnell have a chance to keep that seat or to take over that seat for the Republicans because it would be a net pickup?
STEVE MOORE, SENIOR ECONOMICS WRITER: Well, she — yes, she does have a chance, Paul. But certainly, Mike Castle would have had a better chance of winning. I'm actually kind of happy with the outcome. I think that if Mike Castle had been in the Senate as a Republican, he would have cut deals with — with Barack Obama on things like, you know, cap-and-trade legislation, tax increases, on union issues. And so, I have a sense that the Republican voters want people who really believe in the core Reagan issues. And that's one of the reasons you've seen the upsets, Paul, in states like Alaska, Delaware, Kentucky, and Nevada. I think the whole electorate has shifted to the right. And I agree with your premise that now you're going to see this hurricane that's hit the Republican, I think it's headed right smack towards Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats.
GIGOT: Yes, but OK, if it's a difference this seat, Delaware seat is a difference between only 49 Republicans in the Senate and 50 Republicans or 51 in the Senate where you have the ability to organize the Senate. Was it worth the trade?
DAN HENNINGER, COLUMNIST & DEPUTY EDITOR: Yes, I think ultimately it was worth the trade. I agree with Steve that the electorate looks like it's moving to the right. And the O'Donnell victory is more a reflection of the anger of the electorate than of Christine O'Donnell.
But I'd like to make a point about this, Paul. The John Kerry e-mail that you got. I read some of the commentary on the primaries and some of the liberal pundits, The New York Times editorial page, they're happy. They're saying this proves that the Republican Party is drifting over towards what Ed Rendell, the governor of Pennsylvania, called the crazies.
GIGOT: The nuts.
HENNINGER: The nuts. You know what? I'm beginning to think there is a risk here. In American politics, you can be marginalized by the mainstream media. If the candidates do not — or the Tea Partiers themselves do not start talking about what they actually stand for, Independents will get nervous. The Tea Partier's complaints are primarily economic.
GIGOT: They're fiscal.
HENNINGER: It's about spending. They're —
GIGOT: Sure. It's about spending. It's about the growth of government.