Midterms Metaphor Madness

A primer on the cycle's language of disaster

This week’s elections have headline writers reaching for just the right metaphors to characterize the coming Republican gain. For inspiration, they’ve drawn on the weather, war, and, dramatically, if unsurprisingly, the end of days. Sadly, no one is yet to scream, “Iceberg, right ahead!”

Here’s a look at this year’s electoral lexicon.

Apocalypse: A Democratic one could be wishful thinking from the Journal.

Armageddon: Perhaps unsurprisingly, the term of choice for the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody.

Bloodbath: Fox is baying for one.

Flood: Nope, the GOP won’t be flooding congress, but races have been flooded with cash, and right now, Alaska is being flooded with write-in votes.

Hurricane: MSNBC sees the winds coming in its final polling.

Landslide: Expect to hear more from this natural disaster in coming days, but some are getting in early.

Massacre: News Max expects one for Blue Dog Dems; Politico asks what happens if there is one; and at the Atlantic Wire, Elspeth Reeve says Gallup just predicted one.

Rout: Politico can see the mobs coming.

Tornado: Metro.co.uk reports the president is facing a twister of the Republican variety.

Tsunami: CBS asks if Obama
can stop one
, the American Thinker is predicting one, while the Journal isn’t so sure. Jason Tolbert settles on the anglicized “tidal wave.”

Has America ever needed a media watchdog more than now? Help us by joining CJR today.

Joel Meares is a former CJR assistant editor.