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What We Learned On Election Day

By now, the hype and spin surrounding Tuesday's critical mid-term elections has begun to wind down. Both sides claimed "victory." Democrats failed to satisfactorily explain why "victory" in a set of elections that "weren't important" was worth celebrating, and even casual observers have already figured out that it will be the Democrats who will spend much more time during the next twelve months licking their wounds and trying to figure out what went wrong.

Yet I think we owe Democrats credit where credit is due. During the last eight years they mastered the art of using popular culture to stir up negative sentiment against the sitting president (Bush) and the congressional leadership (Republicans). After winning control of Congress in 2006, they continued their use of populist rhetoric in an attempt to further damage the legacy of the Republican party and to pave the way for a "new leader," full of "hope" who would "change" the status quo, who would transform America into what it always had the potential to become. They promised to "drain the swamp" of Washington, DC corruption. They promised an end to the eeeeeeevil "Republican" policy of deficit spending. And above all, they used their command of populism to impress upon the American people that they were listening to them, and that they would govern from the bottom up.

This past Tuesday proved, with absolute certainty, that Americans have finally figured out that they were scammed -- big time -- by Democrats.

Never in my lifetime have I seen a political party make so many broad promises, and then break so many of them so quickly, and in a manner so chock-full of arrogance and an utter lack of regard for the will of the people.

Draining the swamp? Never has corruption or cronyism been more rampant. Never has political payola and favoritism been more in fashion. Never has a White House been more closely tied with questionable and extremely powerful political and labor organizing groups and lobbyists. And well-known corruptocrats continue to hold positions of power.

Openness, transparency? You've got to be kidding. Midnight authorship of legislation behind closed doors, with the press and Republicans locked out, has been the norm for this Congress. President Obama has more unelected "czars" than imperialist Russia. And declaring war against Fox News, concerned senior citizens at town hall meetings, and the Chamber of Commerce doesn't exactly make the Democrats look like they have nothing to hide.

Fiscal responsibility? Now you've really got to be kidding. Billions of dollars in bailout money and sweetheart deals for banks, while the rest of the economy is still faltering. $787 billion in "stimulus" debt that utterly failed to live up to its predicted effects. A $1.8 trillion budget deficit that can rightfully be described as the largest single annual deficit in the history of civilization. The Fed with an out of control printing press. Foreign nations, particularly China, buying up enough debt to eventually control our economy.

And I haven't even touched on the looming nanny state foreshadowed by the takeovers of the automobile and banking industries, the threats of a government health care takeover, and the odious "Cap And Trade" scheme.

None of these things paint a picture of "hope and change" that would appeal to a broad base of sensible Americans.

The moral here? If you are going to promise to listen to the people and govern from the bottom up, you can't cover your ears, declare a "mandate," and cram your agenda down the throats of the American people.

Democrats haven't learned that lesson. Hopefully the Republicans will.


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Comments (20)

This past Tuesday proved... (Below threshold)
wolfwalker:

This past Tuesday proved, with absolute certainty, that [some] Americans have finally figured out that they were scammed -- big time -- by Democrats.

Fixed that for you. You shouldn't read any less into this election than it really meant, but you shouldn't read any more into it either. All it really means is that enough voters to make a difference figured out that the Dems' promises were a pile of equine-processed hay.

Virginia? Pah. A traditionally Republican state elected a Republican governor. So what?

New Jersey? Means a bit more. But I think it was more an anti-incumbent and anti-corruption vote than it was anti-liberal or anti-Democrat. Similar things have happened before in traditionally-Republican states and districts where the current officeholder was hopelessly corrupt.

However, in both cases it was a relatively small percentage of voters who really "swung." I'll believe that this is a sign of a sustained swing against the Democrats if next year's elections produce similar results, consistently, across the country.

I blame Bush.... (Below threshold)
Victory is Mao's:

I blame Bush.

A few? I thought 53% was a ... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

A few? I thought 53% was a "huge mandate from the people" which indicated that "a huge majorority of right-thinking Americans" really wanted to get even for years of racist, union-busting, greedy, out-of-control rich people out to destroy Gaia for profit.

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.

Turns out that Obama knows a lot more about casting blame and stirring up the petty jealousies of the left than he knows about fixing actual problems in the three dimensional world. And a heck of a lot more about feeding the endless chattering of the hard left than he knows about actual governing.

History will not be kind to Mr. Obama. Nor should it.

Well the Democrats have pai... (Below threshold)
JustRuss IT1(SW) USN [reitred]:

Well the Democrats have painted themselves into a corner on this one. They say the results had nothing at all to do with the President which leaves only that enough people were fed up with Dem corruption and spending to switch their votes.

But they also try to say that the Republican party has to move to include "moderates" if they expect to start winning again. Question: Why would you ever listen to your enemy when they tell you how to win? They are obviously scared of the conservative movement and the tea parties.

If we wish to define a "moderate" Republican I say what we really need is Conservative Libertarians running as Republicans. Socially Conservative but willing to ignore social issues in favor of Fiscal Conservatism. I do not necessarily agree with the "libertarian"(small L) idea of completely ignoring social isues. But I do agree that you can be a Social Con without harping on the issues and making it a major part of your campain and governing mantra.

What the Dems want us to believe, is that what the Republican party needs is moderate democrats running as Repubs not conservative democrats who are willing to overlook things like abortion and medicare in favor of fixing the budget, cutting programs and reducing the deficit.

Forgive me for being a bit scatterbrained, I haven't finished my coffee. But in the end I think people voted both Against the dems AND for conservatism at the very least in the fiscal arena. They don't necessarily agree with social cons but they know that it is much more important to fix our spending addiction than to forward social issues at this point.

To quote South Park "They took ar Jeeeebs!"

OH:Also after look... (Below threshold)
JustRuss IT1(SW) USN [reitred]:

OH:

Also after looking into Owens in NY23 I am still convinced that he is at the very least a bluedog if not even more "moderate" and that he is by far a better choice than Scuzzy ever was. Owens is still better for this country as a Democrat that Scuzzy was as a Republican.

Once again reaffirming my Independant Status. If I lived in NY I would have voted Dem rather than vote for Scuzzy, I would have voted for Hoffman as a protest against both parties but I am happy with the current pick.

If only we could get more Dems like this in congress.

The election of "O" was the... (Below threshold)
recovering liberal democrat:

The election of "O" was the big crescendo of the radical far left from the 60's. When the over throw of the government that started on America's college campuses stalled, a lot of them stayed in school and became teachers and lawyers but, they clung to their politics. They were too radical even for most of us liberals back then and now too radical most of America. They rode into positions of power behind the euphoria of "O" and thought their day had come. They knew he was one of them but, America was not able to see that clearly because of the outright conspiracy of the press and those close to him. "O" hid behind fluffy platitudes and made most America think he was one of them. Those of us that looked at his back ground and his associations knew he was far from moderate about anything. We had heard it and seen it before. He just had a fresh face and energy. Yesterday the radical liberal left found out forty odd years later, they were wrong again.

The only thing these electi... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

The only thing these elections and the 2008 elections mean is that in hard economic times people vote their pocketbook first. Voter's blame the party in power when the economy slows and the more it slows the greater the hit the party in power takes. Interestingly, most voters consider the party in power to be the party that holds the white house, not the party that controls congress. Even if Republicans take control of the house in 2010 and make gains in the senate, voters will still blame or credit Democrats for how the economy looks going into the 2012 elections.

The lesson for Democrats is that they had better get started fixing the economy, and passing bills that increase the deficit is a sure way to get thrown out of office.

"If only we could get more ... (Below threshold)
gary gulrud:

"If only we could get more Dems like this in congress."

Agreed. McArdle is pushing the pap that Hoffman lost because Northern repubs don't take kindly to Southerners dominating the party with social issues. She noted Repub affliation there is quasi-genetic like Roman Catholicism.

Hoffman lost by less than the total DNF Scuzfrau raked. The undecideds broke 3:1 for Owens.

Rather begs the question these voters were informed, eh? Where did those unhappy with the NRCC paternalism run?

"Pay no attention to the ma... (Below threshold)
914:

"Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

Or for that matter, the One in front of the teleprompter.

This past Tuesday proved... (Below threshold)
John:

This past Tuesday proved, with absolute certainty, that Americans have finally figured out that they were scammed -- big time -- by Democrats.

Interesting take. But a look at the historical record shows otherwise.

In all eight gubernatorial elections since Ronald Reagan's first term, Virginia has given the party of the incumbent President a loss. In New Jersey, the President's party has lost six gubernatorial elections in a row

http://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2009/Senate/Maps/Nov04-s.html

In case you didn't get it, that's 100% of the time for VA and 75% of the time for NJ over the last 30 years. Regardless of party. That includes 2 terms of Reagan and 3 terms of Bushes.

Your analysis does not mean what you think it means. In fact, it means nothing.

That's a first...... (Below threshold)
Steve Green:

That's a first...

For #10: Of course it has a... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

For #10: Of course it has absolutely nothing to do with Corzine. Nothing....

Right?

Of course it does. Being a ... (Below threshold)
John:

Of course it does. Being a scumbag certainly doesn't help an already-established anti-incumbent bias.

What an odd, pointless comment for you to make.

Im bias against all scum ba... (Below threshold)
914:

Im bias against all scum bags.

I had said here a year ago ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

I had said here a year ago that there is no way Obama or any other person could live up to the persona his handlers and the press made him out to be. The PR blitz was extensive and way over the top with none of it based on reality. Liberals bought what they were selling and fortunately independents only rented the idea. They have awakened. Obama is oposite everything he said he would be. Close
Gitmo. No. Stop earmarks? No. Control spending? No. Transparentcy? No. No hiring of lobbyists? No. There is not one thing Obama has lived up to. He didn't even attempt it. He actually thought the citizenry is stupid.

I did know this day would come but I have to say I am surprised it happened this soon. ww

John,correlation d... (Below threshold)
jeff:

John,

correlation does not equal causation ...

voters in both NJ and VA told us why they voted the way they voted and NONE of them ... NONE of them said it was because there was a Dem in the White House ...

The real problem doesn't re... (Below threshold)
Thor-Zone:

The real problem doesn't rest with Democrate or Republicians. These days they are pretty hard to tell apart from each other.

ALL the politicians, Republicans and Democrats alike want power, larger government and more control over your life.

The sooner Americans understand this, the sooner we can take our country back.

This past Tuesday proved... (Below threshold)
Ryan:

This past Tuesday proved, with absolute certainty, that Americans have finally figured out that they were scammed -- big time -- by Democrats

Wtf, really!? Is this what you guys really cling to? We just increased our house majority to 86 seats by winning a seat that Republicans had held since the 1800s. Nice victory GOP. Lol you guys haven't learned a damn thing, and I love it.

Ryan,Really, since t... (Below threshold)

Ryan,
Really, since the 1800s. Why don't you go look
up who held that seat from 1989 to 1993.
Wikipedia is your friend.

"What an odd, pointless ... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

"What an odd, pointless comment for you to make."

And your comment was nothing more than an interesting observation. It doesn't prove a thing.




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