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Harry Reid wins!

Huge win: Multiple news orgs are calling the Nevada Senate race for Harry Reid over Sharron Angle.

On a very difficult night for Democrats, this is a major victory. The Nevada race represented perhaps the starkest showdown in the national battle between the Tea Party insurgency and the Obama/Dem vision, with Angle unabashedly arguing for dramatically scaled back or even non-existent government against Reid, the leading enabler of the Obama agenda.

Outside groups led by Karl Rove and others pumped a boatload of money from undisclosed donors into the race. All to no avail.

Reid was written off for dead for months by Beltway commentators. But Reid's team refused to accept this, going to work very early on to select the challenger they wanted to face by launching a brutally hard hitting campaign against Sue "chickens for checkups" Lowden in order to ensure that she lost to Sharron Angle in the GOP primary. And former Reid staffers rallied around.

Once Angle got in, this became in one sense the most important race in the country for what it said about the state of the electorate and what sort of views are now considered acceptable in a candidate for higher office. On a very dark night for Dems, this is a glimmer of light -- a very clear rebuke to the ascendent Tea Party right.

By Greg Sargent  | November 3, 2010; 1:11 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, Senate Dems, Senate Republicans  
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Next: The smoke clears from the wreckage

Comments


What a tangle the results of tonight bring

- Obama can not rail and run against a "Republican Congress" because the democrats hold the Senate.

- However, the democrats are still led by Harry Reid which really is not good fro the democrats

- The democrats in the Senate will now need at least 7 Republican votes for closure - that is going to be difficult,

- I doubt that Obama and Reid are going to try to get rid of the filibuster now that the prospects of the democrats for 2012 look so grim

- Those 7 Republicans are going to be difficult to get with the Tea Party influence in the Republican caucus.


So, Obama is going to have a difficult time if his strategy is to sit back, wait for the Republicans to pass a bill, and Obama vetos it.


Instead, there will have to be negotiations in the Congress to get anything done. The Republicans are not going to agree to anything unless Obama is part of the deal.

So that dynamic really eliminate the veto as an obstruction. The veto threat can be used by Obama in the negotiations.

But as a high-profile veto action, that really is not available to Obama.


WOW Obama has to now stick to his bipartisanship pledges.


I would highly recommend that Obama put health care on the table NOW - and work out a deal - strip down that bill, make it less expensive, get rid of the subsidies and individual mandates.


Obama would be wise to do all this earlier, not later. The Presidential primaries are coming up fast. The budget fights really should get done this spring.

It would not be a good move to let them drag out over the summer, into the fall, which would be close to the primaries.


.

Posted by: TeaPartyVictoryTonight | November 3, 2010 1:15 AM | Report abuse

"Tea Party insurgency" and "Obama/Dem vision"?

Subtle Greg, very subtle.

Posted by: pj48 | November 3, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations to Greg and all the Journolister! Your super sekret plan worked!

:)

Honestly though. Sanity prevailed in one part of the country at least.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse

This is a really unexpected result. Reid's campaign said they were very comfortable and I guess they knew what they were talking about.

The defeat of Angle (and McDonnell) is a repudiation of the Tea Party story, at least the crazy version these two ladies presented. Hooray for sanity! Nevadans are common sense people.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 1:20 AM | Report abuse

We'll see how close it is tomorrow. Sharron Angle has not conceded. Nov. 22 is the deadline to request a recount.

Posted by: clawrence12 | November 3, 2010 1:24 AM | Report abuse

The TP, and by extension, Sarah Palin, lost the Senate for the GOP with the choice of Angle and McDonnell. Oh well.

Early reports from AK have the write-in's winning. LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 1:25 AM | Report abuse

People do not realize that we simply have a short calendar now.

Yes, there is two years until the Presidential elections -

But the primaries are just over a year away.

That is extremely important

Nancy Pelosi did not pass a budget this year, so the Federal budget is on extension. That is serious. It would make little sense for either side to let the negotiations drag on for the next year - and have a deal wait until the fall.

well

That puts us in the spring for negotiations - the budget at the very least - health care defunding might be on the table.


Obama would be wise to put the health care bill on the table and make some concessions to the Republicans - and get the budget done with that.


Obama is making a major mistake taking off out of the country this week instead of getting into this.


Obama really only has 8 months left to make a good set of negotiations with the Republicand before the calendar slips into the summer - and then the fall - and then we are too close to the primaries.

This is it for Obama - he has the next 8 months to COMPROMISE AND BE BIPARTISAN - because at that point next summer, the clock is out on his one term.


.

Posted by: TeaPartyVictoryTonight | November 3, 2010 1:25 AM | Report abuse

claw: The GOP would have to pay for a recount in NV. You think they want to dump anymore money into that race?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 1:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm still holding out for Hanabusa!

Oh and Greg, Greg, greg...the Tea Party is done. That was a brand. It went viral but, so, you didn't get the memo, the Republicans bought it out. Mergers and acquisitions dude, its a free market.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 1:29 AM | Report abuse

@12Bar: "The defeat of Angle (and McDonnell) is a repudiation of the Tea Party story, at least the crazy version these two ladies presented. Hooray for sanity! Nevadans are common sense people."

Yeah, but if you want to gloat, look to Massachusetts. Not a single Republican won. Which just goes to show the Democratic wisdom re: Scott Brown was correct. Scott Brown won because Martha Coakley was an atrocious (I mean, in her own way, Christine O'Donnell level) candidate. And then Republicans lost both to Barbara Boxer (understandable, given the district) and . . . Jerry Brown? What was that about a wave?

No doubt, a great showing for Republicans. Very strong midterms for the GOP. But Reid's still in the Senate, probably. Coons won. Brown and Boxer win, and not a single Republican victory in Mass. And no word on McClung. If Lisa Murkowski wins, that will be something. But I'm dubious. I still think Miller takes it, and my record tonight as been pretty good.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 1:31 AM | Report abuse

Wonder if Reid the Senate leader will cry too during his speech.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 1:32 AM | Report abuse

I am surprised over the margin of Reid over Angle. The polls were all over the place, one would be +4, then the other. The results are not outside the margin of error, but it is quite a large margin.

It was GOTV activity, and didn't suekzoo say that Harry carried 90% of the Hispanic vote. That helped a lot.

In CA, I will look forward to seeing how the Hispanic vote split, but I'm sure we will see a preponderance that helped the Democrats. I argued this point with some people on this blog who said it would make no difference, but when you live in the West, you know it makes a difference.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 1:33 AM | Report abuse

I think one thing we all saw this year - was the difference between the small states and the big states in these Senate races.

In a small state, it relatively easy to get into a smaller primary field and sway an electorate.

In the larger states, it is more difficult and far more expensive to run these races.

Just a few thought.

To measure the "mood of the nation" the smaller states are not really as much of an indicator as the larger states. The money is amplified in the smaller states, where it is easier to run commercials.

well

The House moved over 60 seats tonight DESPITE gerrymandering. That is astonishing. If more House seats were competitive, or actually reflective of the mood of the electorate, the swing would have been far greater.

Tomorrow's numbers on the down-ticket races are going to be shocking - that is certain. There were many State Legislative races up.

Obama would be wise to take a strong look at the larger States here. The democratic wins in the smaller states, are just that.

Posted by: TeaPartyVictoryTonight | November 3, 2010 1:34 AM | Report abuse

@kevin,

I'm not taking anything away from the Republican gains this cycle. But Angle and O'Donnell (how quickly I've forgotten her name) represent a particular slice of the Tea Party, different from Rand Paul for example.

Had the Republicans run establishment R's, they might have taken both Delaware and Nevada. Had they run more intelligent, mature and seasoned libertarian types, they might have taken Nevada.

But, you are the MAN, Kevin, for making this blog a pleasurable experience. Right now, I'm so grateful, I'm inclined to agree with almost anything you say. :)

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 1:40 AM | Report abuse

If there's evidence of voter fraud, the GOP will pay for the recount.

Posted by: clawrence12 | November 3, 2010 1:43 AM | Report abuse

The Illinois Governor race is close - at about 7600 votes with 2% still to go

60% of the precincts are in Chicago and the Cook county areas - Quinn areas


Absentee and provisional ballots are all out there - this thing could be a mess.


.

Posted by: TeaPartyVictoryTonight | November 3, 2010 1:44 AM | Report abuse

"Outside groups led by Karl Rove and others pumped a boatload of money from undisclosed donors into the race. All to no avail."

Really? Like I've been suggesting all along, that simply pumping lots of money--disclosed or not--into a campaign does not buy the election? I'm feeling very vindicated tonight, myself. ;)

@mikefromArlington: "Sanity prevailed in one part of the country at least."

Sanity prevailed everywhere, actually. Even though I didn't always agree with the outcome. ;)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 1:45 AM | Report abuse

Alright, I'm out, all. More in the A.M.

Many thanks to you regulars for sticking around on the site through difficult times.

More to come.

Posted by: Greg Sargent | November 3, 2010 1:47 AM | Report abuse

The democratic party is really becoming a regional party -

Just look at the map. It is a New York and California party -

And a few smaller states in the East and far West.


well


That is just what they said about the Republicans last time. But this time I think the democrats are really finished. The Tea Party will win the next set of elections.

Posted by: TeaPartyVictoryTonight | November 3, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

@12Bar: "Had the Republicans run establishment R's, they might have taken both Delaware and Nevada. Had they run more intelligent, mature and seasoned libertarian types, they might have taken Nevada."

Agreed. I called the Tea Party as losing Nevada and Delaware for the Republicans (and possibly Alaska--at this point, Murkowski winning is a loss, even though I'm still thinking Miller will pull it out, but it's close) several weeks ago.

"But, you are the MAN, Kevin, for making this blog a pleasurable experience."

You're welcome. I'm a public servant at heart.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 1:51 AM | Report abuse

@Greg: Good night to ya. See you in the AM. I've been up late working (while watching the blog) and I think I'm about to hit the hay myself. See yall tomorrow.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 1:53 AM | Report abuse

Boxer/Fiorina race may not be over. Keep tuned...

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 1:54 AM | Report abuse

"Many thanks to you regulars for sticking around on the site through difficult times."

Hmmm, I wonder what is he talking about, how few surprises we've had tonight? Dino Rossi hasn't lost yet? What is difficult?

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 1:55 AM | Report abuse

"I'm a public servant at heart."

There is no other kind.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 1:57 AM | Report abuse

Ah, who could forget "chickens for checkups", or "Second Amendment Remedies'.

Piss OFF, Angle. So, are you a traitor to the Constitution?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 3, 2010 1:58 AM | Report abuse

I think he's talking about the troll attack. That's the difficult times.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 1:58 AM | Report abuse

shrink-

as a public servant, I agree...

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 3, 2010 2:02 AM | Report abuse

Joe Miller in Alaska is another Angle/O'Donnell knockoff. It is obvious he's the wrong candidate. The fact that Murkowski can run ahead of him, on a write in, is proof that she would have easily won the election.

Miller was unvetted and that's what did him in, I think. Very similar to O'Donnell.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:02 AM | Report abuse

Oh, I forgot about that.*
That little comments removed number thingy down there. Somebody's Life's Work passed into a software porta potty.**

*not really
**it does not violate the human waste only policy

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 2:05 AM | Report abuse

Difficult times? I'll tell you what has been difficult times

LISTENING TO THE OBAMA PEOPLE FOR THE PAST THREE YEARS

Seriously folks, the most arrogant and blowhartly group - so full of their ridiculous ideas that there was no talking to them.


The mocking and harassment


The childish behavior from the Obama people has been off the charts. The False Charges of Racism have been completely out of bounds. This behavior has not only been extremely immature, but it has been counter-productive to any serious and reasonable discussions.


.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:09 AM | Report abuse

Looks like NY-23 is staying with the Dems. Doug Hoffman ran again on the Conservative Party ticket after losing the GOP primary, and is siphoning off enough votes from the Republican to keep the seat blue.

Some people never learn.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:10 AM | Report abuse


The democratic party is really becoming a regional party -

Just look at the map. It is a New York and California party -

And a few smaller states in the East and far West.


well


That is just what they said about the Republicans last time. But this time I think the democrats are really finished. The Tea Party will win the next set of elections.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:11 AM | Report abuse

12BarBlues: Boxer/Fiorina race may not be over. Keep tuned...

Why do you think this? From what I am hearing, most of the outstanding votes to count are in Boxer territory....

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:13 AM | Report abuse

@sue,

Your info is better than mine. What are you watching? I just have the totals.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:15 AM | Report abuse

For some *cough* troll *cough* folks, this is their first time around the block.

Unless, its performance art...

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 3, 2010 2:15 AM | Report abuse

If the democrats do not get Obama to run, and they run with Obama in 2012, the democratic party will not be able to survive.

There is a "tipping point" at which political parties simply do not have enough money to go on and win races.


The democrats are dangerously close to that "tipping point" Ironic that Al Gore thought the Earth would burn to a crisp with such a comment, and all the time it was really the democratic party about to burn to a crisp.


The only way to save them is to get Obama to resign.

The Republicans may not impeach Obama - instead they are going to INVESTIGATE EVERYTHING - especially those 33 liberal czars and what they have been up to - and I don't think the liberals are going to be happy when they find out exactly what Obama has been up to.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:15 AM | Report abuse

Fiorina just talked to her supporters and did not concede.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:19 AM | Report abuse

Well, if the behavior of ignoring the Conservative viewpoint on this blog is any indication, the democrats have not learned anything - and are sure headed for greater election losses in the future.


Is there any way that you can act like mature adults??


I suppose liberals all around the nation have that problem. If the liberals were unable to speak out against False Charges of Racism over the past three years, there isn't much to their characters to work with.


It is all about character.


Unfortunately, maturity, honesty and good character is too much to ask of liberals.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:20 AM | Report abuse

12BB:

Boxer is giving her acceptance speech right now. She noted that Los Angeles has not reported yet. She's won. It's over.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:21 AM | Report abuse

Unless, its performance art...

(as so often happens)I never thought about that. It is possible.

The MyHairIsOnFire troll could be just one more argument against those 1% for art budgets, or maybe he's a trustafarian.

I knew a DuPont heiress who blew stuff up under water and called it art.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 2:22 AM | Report abuse

Shrink

You don't know what art or brains are

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:25 AM | Report abuse

@sue,

Well, I hope you're right, but the totals have flipped back and forth more than once. I just heard Boxer say that LA and Alameda County are not in the totals and that is Boxer country.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:26 AM | Report abuse

Look at Murkowski in the lead!
The WA Senate looks too close for tonight.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 2:28 AM | Report abuse

shrink-

Homie spends waaay too much time here. So, I figure:
-Waaay motivated TeaPartier? 10% possibility.
-Liberal plant to motivate the troops? 10% posibility.
-Paid by the GOp? 10% possibility.
-Frakking craaayzeee? 70% possibility.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 3, 2010 2:28 AM | Report abuse

The thing with Murkowski...actually "Write In" is that all those votes will not accrue to her. Remember the 'operation chaos' that teabaggers pulled a couple weeks back? They got 90-some people to register as write-in candidates on the AK ballot in order to promote confusion and frustration, and help Miller.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:32 AM | Report abuse

Looks like Colorado and Alaska will go Republican - so that gives the Republicans 48 seats in the Senate

The democrats have 49 plus the 2 Independents

So, Washington State is still in the air.


The thing is Manchin and Webb are in Conservative States and both of them have tough races in 2012 - they will not be able to cast liberal votes.


That would put the Republicans at 50 votes - and the Republicans will surely be in a stronger position than that.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:34 AM | Report abuse

Frakking craaayzeee? 70% possibility.
----------------------------
Much higher possibility. Somewhere in the high 90's.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:35 AM | Report abuse

12BB,

The NYT interactive map shows 23% of the vote in LA and 28% of the vote in Alameda have been reported. The rest are outstanding.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:36 AM | Report abuse

12Bar

You are the one in therapy -

and you are the one stirring up trouble around here - recruiting people here.

And annoying people with your stupid questions which drives everyone nuts with how much you don't understand simple things

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:37 AM | Report abuse

Wow, the left coast of 'merca sure looks blue. Maybe we should succeed, or eatseed or whatever those southerners keep drawling 'boot (or 'baawt). At least the Cali MJ for all law did not pass, you still have to get in front of a "doctor" and pretend you would feel bad if you couldn't get baked. Now that is progress.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 2:38 AM | Report abuse

Whitman conceding. $200m down the tubes. No, it's just a transfer of wealth from the uber wealthy to the CA media.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:39 AM | Report abuse

Back for one minute. Just thought I might mention the local races . . . Bill Haslam took the governorship easily, so that's a gubernatorial flip from Dem to Republican. Haslam looks all right, but with governors, you never do know until they start.

Naturally, I voted against Democrat Steve Cohen in his house race. Naturally, Cohen trounced the competition. The Republican wave is very apparent in Tennessee, looking race by race (lopsided victories in numerous state legislature and local races), but it was not in Cohen's district. He won handily.

City-County consolidation, where the generally much more liberal urban center (Memphis) attempts to take over (and tax) the suburban county went down in flames. Unsurprisingly, city voters approved (although by a narrow margin), but county voters sent it down in flames, 85% to 15%. Generally, I'm pleased with the local results.

On the whole, I'm very pleased with the outcome. O'Donnell would have been worse than a loss in a Delaware, and Angle wouldn't be much better. We've got a pretty good president in Obama (of course, I thought the same about Clinton and Bush, so take that as you will), and we've got a lot of strong opposition coming into the house. In any case, I think the battles and competition is a good thing. It should be hard for bills to become law. It should be hard(er) to spend tax payer money. It should be difficult to pass significant new legislation and regulation. And a divided government helps make sure that it is.

Okay, now, I'm serious. This time for sure. Night!

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 2:41 AM | Report abuse

Brains and crazy

You want to talk about brains and crazy

NOT one person with brains and who was sane would attempt health care legislation right before an election which determines re-districting.


Obama just sunk the democratic party for the next 10 years. It is unbelievable how incredibly stupid that move was.


The fundraising losses which will stem from that re-districting.

The democrats tonight just became a permanent regional party - and the democrats just may not survive the next 10 years.


With liberalism completely rejected, what do the democrats have left? Their wins tonight were basically in place in which they were able to throw huge amounts of money in.

That concentration of cash is not going to be possible next time.


Obama has hurt the democratic party to an incredible degree - it is simply amazing how stupid it was.


.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:42 AM | Report abuse

Goodness! They just said on MSNBC that there are 160 "write-in" candidates in AK.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 2:43 AM | Report abuse

@sue,

Thanks for that. That is a much better site. Looks like Santa Clara Cty isn't in either and that another Democratic stronghold.

Yeah, I think Boxer's got this one.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:44 AM | Report abuse

Kevin, sleep well, don't worry, Hanabusa will take Hawaii 1.

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 2:45 AM | Report abuse

Outside of New York and California, the democratic wins tonight were really in smaller states.

This is a real blow-out.


Maybe the democrats will hold onto the Governorship in Illinois - but the democrats have really been blown out of office in a major way.


With Harry Reid and Obama still in office, don't expect those two to figure out what to do from here.


Harry Reid and Obama GOT THE DEMOCRATS INTO THIS DITCH, and they sure are not going to get the democrats out. And that is the problem, the Republicans are refreshed - and the democrats are STUCK with Harry Reid

And Obama.


Nancy Pelosi was probably the best of the three.


Take a look at the House - maybe 150 of the democratic wins tonight were really "safe" seats. The democrats hardly won any "non-safe" seats. This is unbelievable.

.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:48 AM | Report abuse

@ Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:37 AM |


12Bar "stirring up trouble aroud here-recruiting people here"

Uh, care to elaborate *exactly what* you are talking about here, Tea?

And, my *name* IS, and has been for the latst 15 months at Plum Line: "Chuck (Voellinger)In Denton.

What's *your* name?

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | November 3, 2010 2:49 AM | Report abuse

When the democratic have to rely on one of their candidates tacking one of Obama's signature issues onto a pole, and firing off several rifle rounds into the Cap and Trade bill - just to retain control of the Senate - something is wrong.


Clearly, the policies are wrong

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:51 AM | Report abuse

If Murkowski pulls off this, this is a tremendous insult to Mrs. Palin. And it proves that someone can go against Sarah Barracuda and get away with it.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 2:57 AM | Report abuse

The democrats holding onto the Senate is really distracting to the actual scope of the Republican victories tonight.


The democrats really have bene wiped out

Take a look at the maps. The State Legislatures have to be much worse for teh democrats

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 2:58 AM | Report abuse

Chuck, it's name is SYBIL! :o)

12BB: Yeah, a Murkowski win is a "refudiation" of Palin on her home turf.

Night all...gotta work in the morning!

Posted by: suekzoo1 | November 3, 2010 3:00 AM | Report abuse

Well that went a lot better than it could have.

I'd trade Harry Reid for a bunch of others, but that's that.

Florida, well, you people deserve your fate. So long suckers, get with Haley Barbour and burn some crosses.

Fly over country doesn't matter, never has, unless the Republicans want to do another 'all volunteer' war. Sheesh, even the Chinese figured out you don't invade other countries any more, you just buy them.

hasta luego

Posted by: shrink2 | November 3, 2010 3:03 AM | Report abuse

If one looks at the map of the House, it really is astonishing how the democrats are holding onto these tiny gerrymandered districts - taking up little territory around the nation.

With re-districting, the democrats are sure to lose a whole another set of seats in the House in 2012.

Tonights results are a horrible disaster - and they are sure to lead to further losses for the democrats.


The worst part is the democrats have to go through the next election with Obama and Harry Reid.

Shocking.

Posted by: TeaPartyTonight | November 3, 2010 3:04 AM | Report abuse

Night to everyone too. Good night for the R's, not great for the Tea candidates, hard for the Democrats but could have been worse, good night for Plumline.

Thanks, all, for the commentary.

Posted by: 12BarBlues | November 3, 2010 3:04 AM | Report abuse

Not a single significant surprise to me that I've seen so far except perhaps Alaska.

Most gratifying: seeing Grayson, that vile scum and hero of the left, crushed, as I predicted many months ago, while liberals here at PL hooted in derision and guaranteed Grayson's reelection.

People doubted Kasich in Ohio, but I told people all along he was a lock. Even yesterday Republicans were worried at the exit polling, but I said Kasich would win comfortably.

A working majority of Californians clearly are insane. Good luck in your coming bankruptcy and collapse, and the rest of the country does not thank you for returning one of the two stupidest Senators to office.

As I said early last night, with good candidates in Del and NV, the GOP would have taken the Senate. The wild excesses of the Obama-Pelosi-Reid Dems are, ironically, what probably saved them from losing the Senate, by driving so many Tea Partiers into the GOP primaries.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 6:01 AM | Report abuse

Reid's victory was due to his getting every last union member in Las Vegas to the voting booth rather than any "statement" about the Tea Party. Pure big-city machine politics at it's "best", no more.

Posted by: TobyTucker | November 3, 2010 6:03 AM | Report abuse

It's pretty pathetic that you guys must look to the re-elections of a shape-shifting weasel like Reid as a "huge win" and a "glimmer of light".

Reid won because he is Nevada's porkmeister-in-chief. He claimed he could get more govenment goodies delivered to Nevadans than Angle. The greedy beggars went for it. Reid is part of the problem, not the solution.

You people just don't get it at all.

Posted by: battleground51 | November 3, 2010 6:14 AM | Report abuse

Toby and battleground nailed it re: Reid. Pork and machine politics. They herded all the union folks out of the casinos to the polls after promising pork and scaring them about life without Harry. And he still got a run from a terrible GOP candidate.

Reid and Manchin are the two "big" Dem saves. That says a lot.

As do the crushing losses of liberal heros Meek and Grayson in FL. Plumers were gushing about what great candidates they were just a few months ago.

GOP: southern rump party no more!

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 6:26 AM | Report abuse

Honestly, Angle probably lost it more than Reid won it. Her campaign has to be one of the worst in history.

Posted by: DDAWD | November 3, 2010 6:28 AM | Report abuse

That's also true. Angle was an incompetent candidate. Dems wouldn't have won any key races without poor GOP candidates and self destruction.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 6:44 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure if I buy that Reid was really able to select his candidate. Perhaps he tried, but it's not like Angle was the only whack-a-doodle candidate the GOP picked. Toomey, McMahon, O'Donnell, Rubio all won their nominations.

One interesting story that will probably go ignored in favor of Tea Party is the fate of the more moderate Republicans like Kirk and Ayotte. I wonder if they will be alienated by the party or recognized for what they are, Republicans in seats that they have no business holding.

Posted by: DDAWD | November 3, 2010 7:02 AM | Report abuse

If Harry Reid's victory was just about getting out the union, how come his son didn't win the governorship?

Can't comment much because I want to protect my eyes from certain posters' smugness. But I have to say, the best moment was Michelle Bachmann being interviewed by Chris Matthews.

I didn't even hear what she was saying. I couldn't get over how she looked. She was dressed, made up, and Botoxed for New Year's Eve. All the commenters I've read who said she looked stoned, it was the Visine sheen.

Posted by: KathleenHusseininMaine | November 3, 2010 7:03 AM | Report abuse

So, if Harry Reid were to not remain as Senate leader, who would have the inside track to replace him? DIck Durbin? Chuck Schumer?

If the Dem Senate losses included a lot of Blue Doggies, the remains of Dem caucus might be receptive to throwing Harry overboard.

Posted by: jzap | November 3, 2010 7:42 AM | Report abuse

Looking forward...

Notwithstanding all the rosy sentiments and promises from Boehner and others, the Republicans will not be able to do much to hike up the employment figures nor repair the economy nor reduce the deficit. The near-certaintay is that they'll proceed in such a manner as to thwart improvement in all of these stated aims.

Why? First, as McConnell stated last week, the primary goal now for Republicans is to bring Obama's presidency down over the next two years. That goal won't be achievable if they help Obama to better conditions, so they won't. Second, they will have no reason (if the goal is electoral victory next cycle) to do anything to deal with the deficit because cuts to entitlements will cost them with voters, because defense is off-limits as a consequence of ideology and the influence of MIC lobbyists, and because continuation of tax cuts to the very wealthiest is now a (or even the) fundamental litmus for the real power centers in the party as well as for those poor dweebs who believe this is a spiffy idea that will help them. Third, the near-total obstructionism of the last two years will continue and expand (hey, it worked electorally, didn't it?) and this will be done in tandem with a constant barrage of propaganda designed to tarnish the President.

The next two years, like the last two years, will not be a period of governance but of prevented-governance. Solidification of Republican power is the over-arching goal and EVERYTHING said and done will fall out from this. K-Street style operations are already being organized. Rove/Gillespie have made it known that the corporate money bonanza arising from Citizens United will now continue non-stop over the next two years to create a constant propaganda blast out into the nation. The key narratives that this propaganda will carry are:

a) the President is stopping necessary governance to improve conditions because he's cold and an elitist and doesn't understand nor care and because it was his liberal policies which created the mess. That both claims are 180 degrees away from the truth does not, of course, matter.

b) unless he is removed from office, either in two years or sooner (impeachment cries will now come loud and far more pervasive) the nation will face doom and moral degeneration.

c) America is a center-right nation (as inarguably evidenced by this election but, somehow, not the prior one) and any continuance of liberalism or any ideology which isn't modern conservative ideology is un-American and illegitimate and deserves 2nd Ammendment remedies though we hope it doesn't have to come to that.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 3, 2010 7:48 AM | Report abuse

"If Harry Reid's victory was just about getting out the union, how come his son didn't win the governorship?"

Who said it was "just" that? Pork promises/threats, incompetent opponent. Those helped.

"I didn't even hear what she was saying. I couldn't get over how she looked. She was dressed, made up, and Botoxed for New Year's Eve. All the commenters I've read who said she looked stoned, it was the Visine sheen."

You're not aware, I suppose, that elections tend to leave candidates exhausted. But I do enjoy that not long ago Dems were crowing about Bachmann's impending defeat -- for no obvious reason be their own hubris and delusional state. Heck, even the Minnesota legislature reportedly flipped to R.

Face it. This is a massive electoral repudiation of liberalism, across all but a few left-wing enclaves. You are the rump party in a nation where a majority rejects your radical ideology.

That doesn't make your radical ideology any more right or wrong. It just shows that you've been delusional, as some of us have been trying to tell you.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Btw, Kasich prevailed in Ohio despite an onslaught of the most sleazy and viciously dishonest ads by Dems and anonymously funded outside groups anyone has ever seen.

Such a disgusting party.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

LOL. As predicted, FDL is back to bashing Obama. Some even hoping Palin runs and wins in 2012 to bring the whole thing down and start over. Others hoping Grayson or Feingold will challenge Obama in 2012.

What a predictable group of twits over there.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

"despite an onslaught of the most sleazy and viciously dishonest ads by Dems and anonymously funded outside groups anyone has ever seen.

Such a disgusting party."

Republicans don't have a leg to stand on when it comes to clean and honest campaigning. Just watching some of those sleazy Republican primary's reminded me what a sorry sack they are.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 8:23 AM | Report abuse

This will be my final week as a regular poster here so might as well let it hang.

Greg's post last night giving kudos to the Republicans for their victory is, in my opinion, greatly misplaced.

Modern conservatism as manifested in the Republican party has almost nothing to do with governance at all. It's goal is achieving and maintaining power through whatever effective means are at hand and then, once power is attained, it's goal is to prevent any significant or real legislation which will redistribute power and wealth from those who hold it through domination of the civic structures of the nation.

What this party/movement does "well" is now almost entirely related to the above. Propaganda, obstruction, institutionalization of friendly power centers, electioneering, organizing hyped-up and wild eyed activists, creating and fostering a fearful, discordant and controllable citizenry, media manipulation etc are their achievements. These are the things they do very well and it is because of them that last night happened. And all of this is almost entirely cynical in intention.

There's nothing laudatory here beyond the amoral winner/loser framing.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 3, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

But Bernie, the modern faux conservative Republican party is great for ratings!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Bernie:

"The next two years, like the last two years, will not be a period of governance but of prevented-governance."

There is a difference, apparently lost on Bernie, between preventing governance and preventing the implementation of particular policies.

Laws are still being enforced. The courts are still in operation. Social Security checks are still getting paid. But because "fundamental transformation" of the nation has been (somewhat) thwarted, Bernie claims that governance has been prevented. And he has the unmitigated gall to talk about right-wing propaganda!

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 3, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Good news about this is over half of those blue dogs everyone hated are gone!

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

qb

You make it really difficult for a person to congratulate the R's for winning so many seats back in the House. Anyway congrats. There were some hard fought races across the country and many close calls but whatever strategy, money, and influences were utilized paid off for the Republicans.

I think you over emphasize the fact that what you see is a repudiation of liberalism. As a country we bounce back and forth, but your interpretation is based on your opinion of liberalism not some national wave of opinion. The fact that far right conservatives were able to convince some right leaning independents that Obama/Pelosi/Reid et al are socialists and dangerous to the country does not make it true.

What we have here is a repudiation of the economic situation, a Congress unable to right the ship, and an electorate flipping back and forth looking for answers.

And BTW, when I look out at the political landscape across the nation, there's nowhere I'd rather be than CA. We've been in holes before, the dot.com bubble, Enron and now the mortgage crisis, but we always climb our way back to the top of the heap, and we'll do it again while maintaining our priorities of education and the environment, just to name a couple.

If there are Republicans out there who can bring jobs back, more power to them, but if all we're going to get is more gridlock, more tax cuts, bogus investigations and a postponement of economic growth, the electorate will flip again so fast your head will spin.

IMO, if we'd taken all the money spent and wasted on the mid-term elections and used it on infrastructure, start-ups, research and education instead, then we'd have some people really excited about the future for a change.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

Mike Pence doesn't really say anything but meaningless platitudes ever. Republican House members get paid to sit around and do nothing along with their staffs. What a waste of money.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | November 3, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

"Greg's post last night giving kudos to the Republicans for their victory is, in my opinion, greatly misplaced."

Bernie, Greg can speak for himself but I read his post as strictly limited to admiration for the GOP's political tactics. Bottom line: the GOP's obstruction worked because the Democrats were unable to make the GOP pay a price for that obstructionism. Why? Because the Democrats are so fractured that they cannot present a coherent and cohesive message. Worse, the Dems cannot employ a defensible theory of governance. Worst of all, the Dems; dysfunction renders them ineffective as stewards of government. Bottom line: the Dems showed themselves as feckless, weak and readily intimidated by the GOP bullies. That's why they got clobbered (beyond the naturally severe impact of the down economy).

So what is the Dems' problem? See next comment.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

Blue Dogs. Republicrats. Conservadems. They are the obvious manifestation of the Dems' problem but they aren't really the problem. The problems are much more fundamental: lack of party discipline and, more fundamentally, lack of commitment to a core philosophy of liberalism. Republicans are Conservative; everyone knows that. Dems are what exactly? Non-Reblublicans? Maybe that's enough to slip the Dems into power when the GOP self-destructs but it is not enough for competent governance or effective political leadership.

Now the inevitable battle for the soul of the Democratic Party has begun. Evan Bayh, one of the cancerous Republicrats who undermined Liberalism at every opportunity, is already urging the Dems to become Republicans. He wants the Dems to cut taxes and slash entitlement spending. Bayh is urging the Dems to move further Right, to embrace Clintonian Triangulation and reject Liberalism. IOW, Dems should concede that the Cons are correct about the fundamental issues of governance. The Dems, Bayh says, must become GOP-lite.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/03/opinion/03bayh.html?ref=opinion

I predict that if the Dems follow Bayh's advice there will be a schism in the Democratic Party before 2012.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:02 AM | Report abuse

I just shake my head when I read these continued comments that interpret Republican victories as a confirmation of a shift in our country towards conservatives and a repudiation of democrats. Meanwhile democratic victories are the result of union thuggary, voter fraud and other malfeasance. If you truly and honestly believe that, actual election results don't matter.

I'm going to echo the comments of Imsinca. Congratulations to the Republicans and thank you to the voters who voted against Angle and McDonnell among other. Now let's get to work on getting people back to work. If there was any lesson from last night, it's that the economy is what people care about.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | November 3, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

"I think you over emphasize the fact that what you see is a repudiation of liberalism. "

No kidding. How can Liberalism be repudiated when it was never adopted? My view is that the problem is precisely the opposite: that the Obama Dems barely employed and never defended Liberalism. The Dems were seen as providing ineffective leadership because they did provide ineffective leadership. Why? Two reasons: 1) the party dysfunction and complete lack of discipline; and 2) failure to adopt and defend Liberalism as an animating philosophy.

Half the House Republicrats are gone now and the only new Republicrat Senator is Manchin. This provides the Dems with an opportunity to remake the party under the banner of Liberalism. Government is how civilized people come together to solve their common problems. It is a simple and powerful message. I truly hope Obama and the Dem Leadership see that and act accordingly.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne

Amanda Terkel has an interesting post up regarding Blue Dogs, they lost half of their numbers last night.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In fact, some progressives blamed the Blue Dogs for losses on Tuesday across the ideological spectrum within the Democratic Party.

"From our perspective, our members did all that they could do and really left everything on the field," said Levana Layendecker, communications director of the progressive grassroots organization Democracy for America. "Of course we are disappointed with the results tonight, but not surprised. Unfortunately, progressive champions became collateral damage tonight in a toxic environment created by Blue Dogs who refused to stand up for real change."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/11/03/blue-dog-coalition-gop-wave-elections_n_778087.html

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

"progressive champions became collateral damage tonight in a toxic environment created by Blue Dogs who refused to stand up for real change"

Bulls-eye!

Thanks, Ims. No baseball and no impending election. Seems like a great time for reading a novel!

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:20 AM | Report abuse

wbgonne

You got it, that's the plan for my weekend. Also, beginning my Christmas baking and sewing. It's supposed to be 100 degrees here today so I'll probably get back in the pool as well.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 9:24 AM | Report abuse

All, how goes it?

Fresh thread, dive in:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/11/the_smoke_clears_from_the_wrec.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | November 3, 2010 9:27 AM | Report abuse

Lucky you, Imsinca. It feels like snow here in Boston. On the bright side, the Dems swept everything in MA. Now we have to run a true Liberal -- Capuano? -- and get Centerfold Brown out of Ted Kennedy's seat in 2012.

The party never ends!

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

We all know about the BIG, good news of election 2010. Now for the really bad news, in order of their badness:

Barack Obama is still CiC

Harry "The Weasel" Reid is still Senate majority leader.

Nancy Pelosi, the wicked witch of the West, still exists.

Barney Frank (gag) won again.

Chuckie Schumer won.

Boxer won.

Sharron Angle lost.

Maybe next time.

Posted by: battleground51 | November 3, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Not sure what sort of books you guys are looking for Imsinca and wbgonne, but I recommend, The Big Short and the Family if you are still in the political mood or The Corrections if you are looking for a novel. I am not too far into The Corrections, but Franzen is a great writer.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | November 3, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

@bg - yes, I understand the thrust of Greg's post and he and I would disagree on little in terms of political philosophy.

Liberalism in America (more than elsewhere) is in decline and is weak for a number of reasons but key among them is that there has been a purposeful and concerted effort over four decades to bring exactly this consequence about. The Koch brothers are merely one recognizable modern aspect of this, FOX another and Citizens United one more. Whether liberal/progressive parties can rouse themselves now to compete is not at all clear. This election ought to make that - after the Bush period and all that came with it - very clear.

But for sure it will never happen without a deep and profound acknowledgement of the morally repugnant nature of modern American conservatism.

Posted by: bernielatham | November 3, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

@lmsinca: "There were some hard fought races across the country and many close calls but whatever strategy, money, and influences were utilized paid off for the Republicans."

I think most of the credit for the Republican victories goes to the Democrats. Sure, we had a few candidates (O'Donnell, Angle) working hard to get Democrats elected. But how many Democrats were out there trying to motivate and inspire Republicans to show up to the polls and vote? And not just the candidates, but the grass roots. I could almost hear some very special people calling me an idiot, naive, and a fraud while I pulled the lever. The Republicans should really be paying those guys.

"The fact that far right conservatives were able to convince some right leaning independents that Obama/Pelosi/Reid et al are socialists and dangerous to the country "

I didn't think either thing, and have never been convinced of either thing, but I'd still vote against 'em. You don't have to be a socialist to be a lesser option than your opponent. Although in Reid's case, it certainly would have helped.

"and an electorate flipping back and forth looking for answers"

Although not in certain areas. Mass. stayed Democratic across the board. California replaced a liberal Republican governor with a more liberal Democrat governor, and sent stalwarts like Boxer back. Barney Frank won. And so on. Most of the flipping back and forth seems to be at the edges (admittedly, there are a lot of edges), with only a few stalwarts actually getting the boot.

A real, national repudiation of liberalism would have involved either Boxer or Frank losing, more local gerrymandered candidates (like my own rep, Steve Cohen) losing (Cohen won in a landslide), and the more conservative Miller, in red state Alaska, would not be looking at being beat by Murkowski. The results don't suggest a repudiation of liberalism, or an embrace of Republicans, but a punishment of many Democrats, most of whom didn't have the brand recognition of a Frank or a Boxer. Off the top of my head, other than Feingold, what big name Democrat lost?

This was the result I would have predicted. I kind of liked the idea of a Republican tsunami, but realistically, that never seemed likely to me. History said Republicans would take the house, and could (but probably would not) flip the senate, and that's pretty much exactly what happened.

But the Republicans have a good chance of taking the Senate in 2012 or 2014, depending on Obama's coat tails (probably not significant in 2012, presuming he is re-elected, which, unless there is a primary challenger, I do). That's a function of who has the most seats to defend in those elections.

Well. We shall see, shan't we?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

"Liberalism in America (more than elsewhere) is in decline and is weak for a number of reasons but key among them is that there has been a purposeful and concerted effort over four decades to bring exactly this consequence about. The Koch brothers are merely one recognizable modern aspect of this, FOX another and Citizens United one more."

Agree completely, Bernie. Have you read Invisible Hands by NYU Prof. Kim Philips-Fein? If not, you should. It lays out the Right Wing Propaganda efforts that started the day the New Deal was enacted but really took off in the 1970s. Unfortunately, Invisible Hands ends with Reagan. I'm still looking for a book that picks up the sordid tale from there to now. If you have any recommendations please pass them on.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

ashotinthedark

I'm finishing wbgonne's book, The Bitter End, which hit the bookshelves about a month ago. You can purchase it through Lulu. I have The Big Short on my Amazon wish list and will look into The Corrections as well, thanks. I'm always looking for great reading material, especially as winter approaches.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Scott,

That was particularly well said of Bernie's refrain. It's literally inconceivable to liberals that anyone could genuinely be opposed to the advance of liberal policies, which they equate to "governance."

lms,

I will try to respond on the next thread. I'm a bit jammed with work, though. I am not without understanding of some of what you are saying, but I think it's a bit much, after all the damnation and demonization of the GOP, two years of pronouncements of its well-deserved death, crowing that the the future is all Obama, Grayson, Meek, Pelosi, etc., to imagine we wouldn't take some satisfaction in seeing the arrogance of it all crushed in a tidal wave of rejection.

I am not under any illusions at all about the future; but it's easy to see that most of the left who are represented here will never be wrested from their state of delusion that they represent a majority.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

All, fresh thread:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/11/the_smoke_clears_from_the_wrec.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | November 3, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Election 2010 is strong evidence, if not proof, that the Obamanation is a flash-in-the-pan phenomena. Somehow, left-wingers got one past the filter in 2008. 2010 seems to be a correction of that error.

The Democrat party is making the Republican party stronger with every election cycle that the Democrats win. This is absolutely true.

In 2008, the loopy liberals were dancing on the imagined grave of the Republican party. They said it had been reduced to a second rate, regional, old, white mans party. What a shipload of fools those liberals are. That is what the Republican party WAS about 60 years ago.

The Democrats changed that starting in the 1960s. When the left-wingnuts took control of the Democrat party, it set in motion forces that made the Republican party a national powerhouse.

The Obamanation may have completed the process of making the Republican party Americas dominant party for generations to come the way Roosevelt made the Democrat party dominant after WWII.

2012 will tell the rest of the story.

Posted by: battleground51 | November 3, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

ashotinthedark:

I have Franzen's book on my shelf.

The Bitter End is at lulu.com. Here's the blurb:

"The Bitter End is a novel of political intrigue set in the Irish working-class enclave of South Boston. A breezy read, stocked with vivid characters and snappy dialogue and flush with local color, The Bitter End indelibly captures a world that is passing, but not going easily."

Thanks, Ims.

Later, All.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

P.S., Greg. I don't see a fresh thread on the Plumline page.

Posted by: wbgonne | November 3, 2010 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Kevin

"I didn't think either thing, and have never been convinced of either thing, but I'd still vote against 'em."

I think it's clear from the comments you've made over the last several months that what you're saying about yourself is true. There are however voters out there who are susceptible to the constant barrage of fear based politics.

I see it in the Seniors I work with and we've even seen it in some of our less politically active and informed friends. Your response, or qb's for sure, might be that both sides do it, but really the right is much more effective at it.

While you and I may not be of the opinion that last night was a rejection of liberalism, it is certainly the meme traveling through the media and the blogosphere this morning. And as such, I reject it.

qb

I'll watch for your more elaborate response later. I had one other thought from your comments this morning as well. I found it interesting that you blamed Democrats for forcing Republicans to endorse far right or unelectable candidates such as O'Donnell and Angle.

Palin had no trouble endorsing them and even threw in Tancredo for good measure the night before the election. There were apparently a number of voters out there who found these three and in addition Joe Miller, as viable candidates. It's a stretch to blame the left for those mistakes.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

lms,

"I think you over emphasize the fact that what you see is a repudiation of liberalism. As a country we bounce back and forth, but your interpretation is based on your opinion of liberalism not some national wave of opinion."

Of course the battle is always in the middle. After 2008, what did your side claim? That conservatism and the GOP were dead and would only get deader, because this was supposedly a left-leaning country moving farther left.

This was a massive change of control in the House. The Senate would likely have changed hands -- from a supermajority, no less -- but for several exceptionally poor candidates in key states. And even then it took Manchin running against his own party and President to hold on. Across the country, the GOP won massively in state offices and legislatures. Maine, Minnesota, and NC all have GOP legislatures now.

And of course the economy is driving things. But it is driving things against the Dems because after 4 years of Pelosi and 2 of Obama and rampant Dems, the publis sees their rule as a disaster, when the country was promised miracles once the government was cleansed of the wicked and corrupt GOP and the enlightened Dems assumed control. Polls show that the public is against the Obama agenda and think the Dems are too liberal. None of that is my opinion.

"The fact that far right conservatives were able to convince some right leaning independents that Obama/Pelosi/Reid et al are socialists and dangerous to the country does not make it true."

Obama/Pelosi/Reid persuaded enough of the public that they are a danger to the country. Unlike Kevin, I think the majority is absolutely correct. Your side claimed the GOP is the danger. That's how it goes.

"What we have here is a repudiation of the economic situation, a Congress unable to right the ship, and an electorate flipping back and forth looking for answers."

No doubt that's partly true. But see above. Your party has controlled Congress for 4 years and had total control for 2. It is appropriately being blamed for the failures of its liberal policies.

"And BTW, when I look out at the political landscape across the nation, there's nowhere I'd rather be than CA."

It has a lot of attractions and advantages, and for that very reason makes a wonderful case study for liberalism. After several decades of far-left rule, it's a governmental and financial disaster, and liberals think the answer is still more taxes, regulation, and government.

"If there are Republicans out there who can bring jobs back, more power to them, but if all we're going to get is more gridlock, more tax cuts, bogus investigations and a postponement of economic growth, the electorate will flip again so fast your head will spin."

Partly true, of course. Victories aren't permanent. It's only your side that thought so. But gridlock would be better than more Obamaism. And I think the public is likely to agree in two years, if that's what we see.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

@bernie: "Liberalism in America (more than elsewhere) is in decline and is weak for a number of reasons but key among them is that there has been a purposeful and concerted effort over four decades to bring exactly this consequence about."

And thank goodness for that!

@qb: "It's literally inconceivable to liberals that anyone could genuinely be opposed to the advance of liberal policies"

It does seem so. The only explanation for liberalism waning, at all, is a orchestrated propaganda campaign, bags of anonymous, tainted money, brainwashing at what not. A malevolent conspiracy going on since the days of FDR! It can't possibly be that, depending on when you ask, between 40% and 55% of folks just don't think liberal policies are all that great.

When presented with two competing viewpoints (one, rationally argued liberalism; the other, right wing propaganda and manipulation), it seems odd that the person who sympathizes with the liberal position is simply responding rationally and logically and morally, while the person who sympathizes with the conservative or rightwing position is being brainwashed, manipulated, or duped.

There is not only a self-congratulatory and narcissistic element to the narrative (while liberals nobly fight for good, and are smart enough to see through right wing manipulations, conservatives and those who vote for them are either evil, greedy or dupes, easily misled), there's also an impenetrable circularity to it.

Conservatism/Republicans are inherently suspect and acting from ignoble motivations, ergo any behavior, anything at all, must be understood through that lens first. And, when you see how a particular advertising campaign is false or a platform is deceptive and misleading, that reinforces the understood primary principle: conservatives are bad. Liberals, on the other hand, are clearly good and have everybody's best interest in mind, in the most rational, scientific and moral way possible. Thus, even if they approach a campaign in *exact same way*, or spin or frame an issue using the exact same style of talking points or framing device, it's actually necessary and right (or, at worst, nobly yet naively mistaken, because it's ineffective against the blind anger, prejudice, and bigotry they face from their evil opposition).

Thus why liberals and conservatives doing the exact same sorts of things, when pointed out, is called a "false equivalence". Because, to most liberals, it is a false equivalence: conservatives are taking anonymous money, prevaricating, spinning, doctoring the historical record, or sleeping around because they are liars, frauds, hypocrites and grifters. A liberal doing the exact same things, more or less, is doing them for noble reasons, in order to bring equality and social justice to the country, or is just exhibiting his humanity, and his own fallibility, for which he should be sympathized with, not attacked!

Etc. On to the next thread.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | November 3, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

(cont'd for lms)

"IMO, if we'd taken all the money spent and wasted on the mid-term elections and used it on infrastructure, start-ups, research and education instead, then we'd have some people really excited about the future for a change."

I'm not sure who "we" is in there, but government "stimulus" has not produced much growth. In any event, the same could probably be said for the money spent in 2008, including the 800 million Obama himself spent to buy the election.

Back to the general idea of a repudiation or rejection, I think this is about as much of a repudiation of a party's policies and ideology and behavior as comes along very often, and about as national as it gets. The two opposing bases never move, and I originally said there are exceptions -- enclaves where liberalism currently appears impregnable, like Cal and Mass.

But it doesn't bother me at all that liberals don't acknowledge any of this. I'm not looking for admissions of error. In fact, i rather hope Dems stick their guns and double down. I rather hope they follow Obama's lead and chalk it up to the public's being irrational from fear and anger . . . and prejudice and selfishness and meanness and cowardice, and all the other things he spent the past two years accusing us of being. Frankly, I think that is what Obama will do, because I don't think it is in him to change.

I think he and the left generally, including the media, see it just as in 1994, when Peter Jennings announced that America had thrown a temper tantrum.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

lms,

One last personal note. I know you usually find my tone too strong or forceful. I'm just not capable of the warmth and fuzziness of a Kevin. But keep in mind that, as today, I'm often turning attention from heated combat like writing a brief (in a brass-knuckle case in your fair state, as it happens) to comment. That plus having endured months of Dem triumphalism here makes it hard to turn off the argument mechanism.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Kevin:

"Thus why liberals and conservatives doing the exact same sorts of things, when pointed out, is called a "false equivalence". "

Well said.

Posted by: ScottC3 | November 3, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,

I quite agree with your last comment. Liberals' self-imputed motives justify all; the motives they impute to conservatives damn all.

I don't quite agree with some of your other takes on the election, though. I would never, ever value divided government over solid, principled conservative government (a thing we've never, ever enjoyed). I can't believe you think Obama is a good Pres. (Really???!) We need rollback, particularly after several years of liberal advance, not just status quo. But I'll settle for no further harm before 2012.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

qb

That's a lot to respond to. First of all, I understand your tone and have learned to live with it. You are combative by profession and assertive by nature, nothing wrong with that except that you're correct, some of your arguments consequently fall on my deaf ears. We are at opposite ends of the political spectrum and there's nothing wrong with that either. To our credit we have never completely given up on each other although we've come close a few times. LOL

Listen, if I thought the free market as it exists now actually worked as an unfettered market place and wasn't skewed to favor the profits of ownership at the expense of workers and the common good of the country, I'd probably be a fiscal conservative myself. I am a fiscal conservative when it comes to our personal and business accounts but also believe I have a personal and financial responsibility to others.

Unfortunately, our little National experiment in de-regulation, off shoring jobs and creative financing hasn't worked. The ultimate result shows in the disparity of income and concentration of wealth in the hands of a few. It shows in the fact that thousands of Americans are being thrown out of their homes, losing jobs, filing for bankruptcy and paying next to nothing in taxes because they make next to nothing.

Our country, ie government, has been taken over by corporations and as a progressive that's the one thing I am fighting against more than anything else. The little tiny inroads made by Obama/Pelosi/Reid barely constitute a dent in the status quo, so to say they have been rejected as liberalism run amok is ludicrous.

And if Meg Whitman had actually taken her $140m she spent trying to win a Governorship and used it as seed money for a new business or two (that's what she's supposed to have a talent for) and put Californians back to work, she wouldn't have had to buy a Governorship. The people would have given it to her.

Posted by: lmsinca | November 3, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

lms,

Interesting idea for Whitman. I suppose it could have been said about any number of other candidates who bought or tried to buy elections. Corzine, Kohl, Kerry . . .

But I doubt very much anything Whitman could have done would have mattered in California. This election seems to prove that it is as lost a cause as is possible (for Republicans). I predict that within 5-10 years something will have to give, because it won't survive more of the same.

"The little tiny inroads made by Obama/Pelosi/Reid barely constitute a dent in the status quo, so to say they have been rejected as liberalism run amok is ludicrous."

Whether they are tiny inroads in a corporatist wasteland or broad paths of destruction through a paradise of freedom, the electorate seems to have reacted negatively. I thought that's what the real question was.

Obama drew a hard contrast. He used very divisive and strong rhetoric against the GOP not only leading up to the election but for most of the past two years. I don't think it is credible for him or his supporters to claim now that the election results have nothing to do with what they did and the choice he repeatedly told the public it needed to make. And that is largely what he is saying even today.

Posted by: quarterback1 | November 3, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Office Management Software

http://officemanagementsoftware.org

Posted by: OfficeManagementSoftware | November 3, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

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