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The joys of a two-party state

Here in Cow Hampshire, we have a pretty healthy two-party system. True, the Republicans have largely dominated, but we just tossed one of them out for a Democrat for governor. We've also had other Democrats in the House, the governor's office, and in the state legislature. It's good; it keeps both parties on their toes and relatively honest.

One of the things that keeps it easy is the graphic example of a one-party state just to our south.

The Republicans in Massachusetts must occasionally feel like the Jews in Iraq -- an incredibly small minority surrounded by hostility, but with a sheer stubborn bent that insists that where they are is their home. But it's never easy.

Yes, Massachusetts has had a string of Republican governors, but that's largely attributable to 1) the voters realizing that giving the Democrats all the power would be tantamount to suicide; B) the Democratic machine feeling the need to keep some token Republicans around that they can plausibly blame for problems and rail against; and III) the sheer crappy quality of the Democratic candidates for governor.

But when you look beyond the corner office, though, you see just how bad things are in Massachusetts. In 2002, the Republicans didn't even bother to run someone against John Kerry. This year, four of Massachusetts' ten Representatives (all Democrats, BTW) ran unchallenged, and a fifth was up against an independent. That's right -- the Republicans couldn't find candidates for the United States House of Representatives in exactly HALF the seats.

The legislature -- where the real power resides -- is even more telling. Before yesterday, the Democrats had (I am not making these numbers up) 33 out of 40 State Senate seats, and 138 of 160 seats in the State House. Governor Romney's vetos were overridden with barely a yawn. This time Romney went all out for Republican candidates, hoping to pick up at least enough Republicans to sustain an occasional veto.

Instead, the Democrats look like they gained yet another Senate seat, and two more House seats.

This does not bode well for those of us in New Hampshire. Every year we notice more and more refugees from Massachusetts streaming north. That wouldn't be so bad, but so many of them immediately start wanting to recreate the conditions they just fled. They forget just why they came here, and just how bad things were down there.

So learn from Massachusetts' bad example. Don't give too much power to a single party. Keep a healthy opposition around to keep them on their toes. For when one party grows fat and lazy and complacent, you end up with things like Michael Dukakis. And John Forbes Kerry.

And Edward Moore Kennedy.

J.


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Comments (10)

Is Teddy's middle name real... (Below threshold)
LisaKay:

Is Teddy's middle name really Moore? Go figger.

Here in Mn we refer to him as Jabba the Hut.

LisaKay, Old Joe Kennedy mu... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

LisaKay, Old Joe Kennedy must've been at the end of his rope for naming all his kids. "Edward Moore" was the name of the family chauffeur when Jabba first blighted this earth.

Yeah, that's right. The Senior Senator from Massachusetts was named after THE HELP.

J.

Moving from Iowa to New Eng... (Below threshold)
sanka:

Moving from Iowa to New England it a much larger move than you think. Everyone expects you to abandon your belief system, thats all I remember from y 3 years there, which never works lol.

Also with Bush at 269 votes why will no one call it? At 269 Bush wins it in the House? Am I high? Whats going on here, dragging it out forever?

This might shock you... but... (Below threshold)
ken:

This might shock you... but the the border to MA is red while it's the granola eaters near VT that is blue (http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2004/pages/results/states/NH/P/00/).

Don't worry about this future refugee... I have no plans to vote like a liberal when I get up there.

Ken, I looked carefully at ... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Ken, I looked carefully at that map. Quite possibly more significant than the bordering states would be New Hampshire's institutions of higher education.

The three bluest counties are Strafford (home of the University of New Hampshire), Cheshire (home of Keene State College), and the county of my first 22 years of life, Grafton (home of ivy-league Dartmouth and Plymouth State University). I suspect that might have more of an influence than the proximity of Vermont, which has roughly half the population of New Hampshire.

J.

Which part of the Constitut... (Below threshold)
BR:

Which part of the Constitution mentions the existence of any parties? Aren't parties just a mimicking of how it was in England before America's independence? The Tories, etc. Aren't their purpose just to consolidate financial power to a group's or groups' election campaigns? Wouldn't it work to have no parties at all? Let each candidate say what he stands for, and that's that.

Maybe we should bring back ... (Below threshold)
John S.:

Maybe we should bring back the NH National Guard from Iraq and let it defend NH’s southern border. Old Gov. Mel Thompson was ridiculed for suggesting in the early 1970s that the NH National Guard be assigned its own nuclear arsenal. Maybe he was on to something. Actually a simple state law banning any type of tenure for college professors would solve our “Democrat problem.”

Another way to solve the "D... (Below threshold)
BR:

Another way to solve the "Democrat problem" nationwide: if we had no (political) parties, the moonbats would lose their entire raison d'etre! Maybe their sex life would improve too!

No, now I'm getting silly. Off to bed and see you all later.

- Ok - Three hours of sleep... (Below threshold)

- Ok - Three hours of sleep and walking around with a snake in my hand looking for a stick to kill...

- I see the Democraps have decided to keep their perfect record of turning every opportunity to show some class into an abject failure.....

Oh, Hunter, you crack me up... (Below threshold)
BR:

Oh, Hunter, you crack me up! Good night! Now I'm going for my 3 hours of sleep. Actually, I may never sleep again! It feels quite good.




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