I just love all of the surfing analogies to the recently concluded totally awesome 2014 mid-term elections.
Some quick observations.
Our Dear Leader, President Obama, is a kinda sore loser, isn't he?
Republicans were supposed to lose governorships. Yes, they lost one (Pennsylvania), but gained in Arkansas, Illinois, Maryland and Taxachusetts, er Massachusetts. And the GOP even kept the Maine's governor's office after an all out assault by the Democrat party to take it away.
The GOP not only recaptured the senate but did so with ease. The final total should be a 54-46 GOP majority in the senate.
And it appears that the GOP will have no less than 245 seats in the house with some outstanding races not called yet.
And the GOP now controls this much of the United States, in particular in congress.
Yes, it is a damn red map, isn't it?
But let's start at this map.
As Michael Barone notes in this analysis of the 2014 election, yes it does look very red. But the splotches of blue are some of the highest-populated areas of the United States. So while the map does look favorable for the GOP, there is still work to be done to make any inroads into many of these urban Democrat strongholds. These strongholds can still in a great year give the Democrats the White House. But for the foreseeable future, congress is more than likely be in the hands of the Republicans.
My message is that the GOP can not and should not rest on it's laurels. The party needs to go anywhere and everywhere to win elections. No city, county, sheriffs office, state, or nation should be written off.
So how about that senate?
Your humble blogger seems to have gotten the winners right on election night. I was off on the numbers, but the results seemed to be correct. Out of the five big races I commented on, the only one that did not pan out was the race in New Hampshire between current Democrat incumbent, Jeanne Shaheen, and former Massachusetts senator, Scott Brown. Sen. Shaheen won exactly by the margin I thought Mr. Brown would win by. But I noted that a drawback would be the accusation of carpetbagging could hurt Mr. Brown. And I think that it did.
One thing that was learned is that the polls were kinda sorta off. Many of the races won by Republicans were by larger margins than the polls were indicating right up to election day. Interestingly, it appears that Democrats were polled on average more than Republicans. But here is the thing. Polls are but a snapshot in time. There is something called election day. THAT is the only poll that counts. Really, it is.
How is it that Republicans have gained governorships in a year that they were supposed to lose? And as I noted above, in some damn unexpected states.
No one, and I mean no one, saw Larry Hogan as a serious candidate against the sitting Lt. governor, Anthony G. Brown. But things started shifting dramatically towards the end of the campaign. But almost all believed that Mr. Brown would still win and handily because after all, Maryland is a solid Blue Democrat stronghold. Not only did Mr. Hogan win, but rather handily. The result was 51% to 47% in favor of Mr. Hogan. And in a state like Maryland, this is a landslide.
And how about Massachusetts?
Once again, the state attorney general, Democrat Martha Croakley, er Coakley, proved that she is so bad a candidate, she lost state office again to a Republican and this time for governor and Charlie Baker defeated the hapless Croakley, 49% to 47%. Mrs. Croakley also lost to former Sen. Scott Brown in the special election to replace the late Sen. Edward "Teddy" Kennedy in 2010. As for me, I want her to move to California and run for any statewide office as a Democrat. It's the way we can win something in 2018.
The two above elections are what happens in a year in which there is a big wave and some candidates that would never win pull off good upsets.
And there are the wins to complete a through take over of a state and that is what happened in Arkansas.
The governor's office is now that of former Republican congressman, Asa Hutchinson as he defeated former Democrat congressman, Mike Ross, by the handy margin of 55% to 42%. Republican Tim Griffin was elected Lt. Governor. Another Republican, Leslie Rutledge, is now the state attorney general. The GOP controls the state senate, 24-11 and the sea change was in the house of representatives where the minority GOP gained 13 seats and are now in the majority, 64-36. The congressional delegation and two senators are Republicans. And Arkansas is now the last state in the old Confederacy to be in the Republican column. There are no Democrat governors in the old Confederacy. Only Bill Nelson in Florida and until the December runoff, Mary Landrieu, are Democrat senators in the old Confederate South. The Democrats basically are down to representing racial minority districts in state houses and in congress.
To be fair the Democrats took away the governor's office in Pennsylvania in one of the few highlights of the election night. But the GOP increased their margins in the state legislature.
And the Big Red Wave did ripple here in California as the GOP gained two, maybe three, congressional seats and have denied the Democrats super majorities in both houses of the legislature meaning they will not be able to raise taxes without GOP votes. And a couple of state office races were close giving hope that the GOP could be competitive in the 2018 elections.
So, how did our Dear Leader, President Obama, the titular leader of the Democrat party, take the election results?
Well, lets just say not all that well.
The day after the thrashing that his party took, losing the senate, ground in the house of representatives and even governorships and state legislatures, the Dear Leader, President Obama, said the following:
“To everyone who voted, I want you to know that I hear you. To the two-thirds of voters who chose not to participate in the process yesterday, I hear you, too.”
No, sorry, you can't give the back hand and claim that people too bothered to vote count the same. In fact, those people may have not voted for the Democrats had they taken the time and effort. But give it to the Dear Leader, President Obama. His delusion went even further:
“The American people sent a message, one that they’ve sent for several elections now.“They expect the people they elect to work as hard as they do. They expect us to focus on their ambitions and not ours. They want us to get the job done. All of us in both parties have a responsibility to address that sentiment.”
With all due respect to the office sir, no that is not why voters turned to the Republicans. They turned to the Republicans to reign you in. They want to bring you and your party back to the center. They want you to stop with legalizing as many illegal aliens as you can questionably. They don't believe in the climate change propaganda and want policies that will lead to economic growth. Not in a pipe dream of a government-made green economy. They voted for people that said we will work where we can with the president, but to no longer be patsies. And they want at the very least major changes in Obamacare. Most would be willing to scrap the whole monstrosity and start again.
This election was about a stark contrast between the Republican party and the Democrat party. It showed that the GOP at least was listening to the public overall much better than the Democrats. The Democrats thought that they could win supposedly tight races by the spectre of the Republican "War on Women" and that they want to take birth control away and put 'em back in the kitchen and for sure barefoot and pregnant. And if that did not work, stir up Black voters with the spectre of Ferguson and a national effort by all police forces, at the hands of the Republicans of course, to use Black youth as target practice. And if that did not work, why they would suggest that because many GOP voters were not in favor of same-sex marriage to look out for a GOP win would probably force all sexual alphabet voters back in the closet or some kind of reorientation camp.
The reason for the lack of effort on accomplishment and fanning the fires of fear is because there are no accomplishments. O-Care is a continuous disaster. The economy may be recovering, but at such an anemic rate most Americans do not feel it at all. We look and are absolutely feckless in the face of the rise of the Islamic State and the unrest throughout the Middle East. Our relationship with Red China looks like we are giving up the store at any given opportunity. In other words, to coin a phrase, the American people feel in a malaise.
But the GOP has to deliver. It has to pursue the policies of seeking to streamline the tax code and seek changes that will be accessible to the middle class. It needs to fight the attempts of massive regulation that is keeping the economy from maybe having a stronger recovery. It needs to stop the government from legalizing millions of illegal aliens and must, must support border security first, then reform. It must have the confidence of the American people that it can govern.
But the fact is that the Big Red Wave was just that. And it crashed on the Democrats hopes and dreams. Hopefully it will restore hope in the GOP and the American experience.